Out of Nothing…Beauty is born

October 10th, 2015 – 3:04 pm

Sámi are also known as Lapps or Laplanders, from the Swedish word lapp which means patch. It’s a recognition of the clothing Saami wear, garments made of colourful pieces of cloth. Many consider this a derogatory term, a sort of looking down on poverty, but for myself it fits well. We were raised to utilize everything, find beauty in usefulness, and to make things useful, beautiful. Everything I do is made of bits and pieces, even my paintings which are cut apart, then reassembled to form a whole of a different quality.

Sámi bracelets are crafted of bits and pieces of renskinn and antler. Tenn, a kind of pewter made with silver spun around sinew, is used to embroider designs of timeless tradition - duodji. Bits and pieces that would otherwise be thrown away transform through patience into beauty.

This year in the studio there will be duodji, tradional bracelets, but also my own interpretations of old stories embroidered with Tenn into reindeer skin. From bits and pieces offered by earth comes a series of Ullas, mythical entities with ancient wisdom.


October 9th, 2015 – 12:42 pm

Two Weekends : October 17-18 & 24-25


Come & be welcomed


 Painting: Lost in February, 30″ x 44″ framed, watercolour, lacquer on paper, collage elements.

Joshua Tree National Park Art Festival

March 8th, 2015 – 3:54 pm

Join us in a unique location - the 29 Palms Art Gallery

It’s very likely to be an outstanding weekend for flowers!!

Art & Flowers that’s pretty good stuff.





December 7th, 2014 – 11:25 am

Classes & Workshops

The studio will be once again throwing it’s doors open to shared space, classes resume February 2015.
Sacred Stone


This a beginner class, but even those who have been painting for a while will pick up something new. People often share how frustrating they find watercolour. This class presents techniques using a very limited palette of highly compatible pigments to almost guarantee no “mud” results. Some unique methods are presented, including stretching paper, that come from my 40 some year passion with the medium.

Monotype on Gelli

Wow, I discovered gelli pads last year and can only say it’s the most fun I’ve had in a long time!

Monotype is a one-off print. The gelli pad process uses acrylic paint and inexpensive paper to make rich prints. There is nothing like something new to get the creative juices flowing.

Mixed Media

A process which combines a little of this and a little of that. My signature work is technically mixed media; watercolour, lacquers, konaunmo (ground shell) and other things are combined, I cut apart traditionally painted watercolours then play, reassemble… Basically  we do much the same in class and have a lot of fun, it’s a fabulous way to stretch skills.

No experience required for any of the above classes, just come with a desire to have fun. It’s my philosophy that doing is the best way to learn.

Image: Sacred Stone, monotype © Ellen Hill, 2014

A calendar of classes and workshops will be coming soon, along with details for each class including suggested materials list.  In the mean time you can contact me with dates you would like to participate and I’ll do my best to make that happen.


I keep my classes limited to 4-6 people so that everyone gets a lot of one on one. If you have a minimum of 2 people besides yourself you can schedule a class just for yourselves! This works very well for people who drive from a distance.

In general the classes run from 9am-noon or 10am-2pm with a break for lunch. The cost is $45 per person. If there is a material fee it will be quite minimal. It’s all about art!

contact Ellen Hill: ehill@tseka.com

Early Winter

December 6th, 2014 – 3:28 pm
Early winter, the last colours of Autumn fill the eyes and lift the heart, perhaps this is my favorite season.Early Winter

First let me say thanks, with a heart over-flowing with gratitude, to all who have sent prayers and kind thoughts out to my mother and me, while she has been going through treatment for advanced cancer. The news is all good. Everything seems to be going a wee bit slower than anticipated, and we go with the rhythm required, therefore, classes will be resuming in February instead of Mid-January.

Over the next few days, I will be posting descriptors on what will be happening in the studio when the days of lengthening light return.

Open Studio 2014

October 23rd, 2014 – 11:44 pm

Come and be welcomed!


There are new things; monotypes and collage, paintings and Saami jewelry.



Two weekends : October 24 & 25 and November1&2

9am- 5pm

Maps and catalogs are available locally covering all the artists participating.

Sewing Saami Bracelets

October 23rd, 2014 – 9:50 pm

Duodji - the way of Saami. Our tradition. Keeping alive my culture….

Remembering our connections.

A long walk home

October 23rd, 2014 – 9:00 pm
Looking westSometimes there is nothing to do except live in the moment and knit. So it has been the past many months. Knitting in waiting rooms while the woman who helped me pick up slipped stitches as a child received radiation and chemo. Hats and more hats were knit on circular needles, no pattern, just casting on and knitting, letting it all happen as it would.

We are on the other side now. Remarkably it looks like a cure and already strength is finding its way back into my mother’s life.

And for me…I’m in the river again, floating on the wonderful currents of creativity!!

Polestar of Consciousness

January 28th, 2011 – 8:16 pm


The moon aligns with Antares tonight. You will see them in the early morning if you are up while it is still dark and the skies are clear. Antares is a warm coloured star just south of the ecliptic, it rises here around 4am, Venus follows just a little later. All three will be very close together.

Antares is a “birthingstar,” she gives birth to many seed stars as does a star in the belt of Orion. In our old Alfr mythology, Antares is the “polestar of consciousness.” It defines an axis that is galactic, it follows the the ecliptic through earth to Aldebaran. Both stars are guardians or watchers, Aldebaran is watcher of the east, Antares is watcher of the west.

We usually think of a polestar as meaning aligned the a star at the north polar axis of this planet (Polaris currently), but in fact there is another meaning to “polestar.” In old times, on Staffensdag, the second day after winter solstice,  a pole or staff was set into earth in the center of the stone circle and aligned with the north star, notches were cut, runes were carved. The staffen of wisdom was then carried around the countryside. The north pole staffen offered a calendar for daily living, marking seasons, planting, harvesting etc. The staffen aligned to Antares,  described something else, sacred wisdom.

My ancestors left stories asking us to be aware that our thoughts have power,  being in balance they said is what keeps the earth spinning aligned to the axis of consciousness.  Greed can cause a catastrophic shift, and they said, this has happened before.

The axis of Antares/Aldebaran is located ~10 Sagittarius/Gemini (tropical). Here and for the last many centuries is where Venus occults the Sun. This is the axis of the long count. Another way or calendar of keeping time. This is about evolution of Spirit and our souls.

solar eclipse

January 4th, 2011 – 6:00 am
3 January namnsdag: Alfrid, Alfrida, elf advice
4 January namnsdag: Rut, Ritva, slender branch


Ghost Sun

Deep darkness outside

Growing light inside


Many points along the old circle bear names which refer to the Alfr or Elves. The Alfr were an actual tribe of people who are remembered in the sagas. They lived in Alfheim, just east of the Oslo Fjord, in southwest Sweden. By the time of the Vanir,  before the Vikings came, the Elves were diminishing. Still, small enclaves remained and fragments of their culture still exist.

The 3 January namnsdag Alfrid, means elf advice and is associated with the circumpolar star Vega.

On the path of souls, a path of old Norse constellations, there walks a reindeer named Dain. Vega forms its face, some say Vega is Dain’s eye. Dain is an elf name, it means dormant.

Here is the deeper story…

About 12,000 BC Vega was the Pole star aligned with the north axis of Earth. The alignment of the north pole to a particular circumpolar star changes as the earth slowly drifts, the result of a phenomenon known as precession. Currently Polaris is the North star or Pole star. A complete transit of the circle takes about 26,000 years. Vega will again become the Pole star in 14,000 AD. We are half way.

What we see in the sky is a circumpolar map of the precession of the ages.  Two aeons represented by the north pole stars have reached their “opposition” along this small circle traced by the north axis of Earth. Polaris, the current polestar, is in the norse constellation of a reindeer named Dvalin. Dvalin was the mightiest of the dwarves who slept with Freya and initiated our current era.

The age brought by the dwarves is the age of Logos, a time of developing the “masculine” mental component of the whole. It is the complement to the age of Elves (and faeries) which was an age developing the “feminine” senses and light consciousness.

Namnsdag Alfrid points to a star portal, where we can ask for the advice of the Alfr, entities who aligned with light consciousness.

Early this morning there was a new moon, solar eclipse. A new moon, especially the first new moon of the year, is a time to plant the seeds of our intentions for going forward. An eclipse magnifies. With the bright star Vega in attendance, we are offered a moment to receive the advice of the elves. What follows is a “slender branch.” (A shoot of life in mid-winter)

If you are born under this star portal these energies are inherent in your birth-print, as would having other planets and angles at the center degrees of Capricorn (tropical).

During the deepest dark, increasing the light within achieves balance.