Level 1 Training: Personal Embodiment

“…….having initially attended for personal growth, the training helped me make a very big, and much desired, change in my profession, and continues to be the source from which I draw the strength to live my life in a heartfelt, meaningful and creative way ” Michelle Vest

In the Level I, Self Portrait & Personal Mythology Training, participants are given the opportunity, and the challenge, to explore their personal material within a disciplined structure using the Tamalpa work.  Working with intermodal art mediums – shifting between movement, somatic practice, drawing, vocalizing, written and spoken dialogues – we work with and reflect on our history, who we are now and the changes that we would like to embody in order to live more artfully in all aspects of our lives.

Using artistic and therapeutic principles, participants uncover and explore a “body mythology” which connects to the compelling events, issues and questions in their lives. We explore each body part, identifying the literal and metaphoric connections between body, life themes and personal stories. In this way the body is explored on the physical, emotional and mental/imaginal levels and is understood as the template for our entire life experience.

Each art medium, as well as each part of the body, acts as a mirror reflecting aspects of self, our relations with others and the world. The training group also acts as a mirror. Through group creativity and learning, we develop the skills and sensitivity, which allows the collective environment to serve its members as a place in which transformational work can take place. The processes that unfold within the group environment reflect the nature of interpersonal relationships, family stories, and community issues. It also motivates its members to cultivate collaboration, collective creativity, skilful communication, and the value of differences and diversity within a supportive setting.

Following an opening weekend of introductions to the practice, each weekend a different body part inspires individual and group themes, art explorations, body awareness exercises, movement studies, partner and group interactions.

During the last couple of weekends of the training a final, life-sized self portrait drawing is created and explored. In culmination, ritual-performances are enacted with the group and teachers witnessing. The self portrait ritual symbolizes the re-integration of all the different parts of self and one’s story with renewed insight, vitality and visions for change.

During final weekend of training we enter into acts of completion and transition to facilitate the shift from studio and training community life to daily life at home.