I am partnering with @woollybananas to create an Operation Sock Monkey handbook!

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My personal mission is to awaken creative expression through local and global art initiatives. 

One initiative partners me with Operation Sock Monkey to create a life skills and entrepreneurship handbook. Our goal is to implement local pilot projects in the Fall and to bring the work to New York City and San Francisco youth programs in Spring 2015 and then to South Africa September 2015.

Stay tuned for phase 1 fundraising! 

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Presale on my ETSY site: embroidered drawing- Dead Bird Series 2 of 4- Heron

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20140626-090950-32990099.jpgOriginal art by Katarina Thorsen

New series: Dead Birds

Drawing 2 of 4: Heron

China marker study of dead heron (found in Stanley Park, Vancouver), color added by senior residents at Rideau Manor, Burnaby (during interactive art afternoon) then embroidered on card stock.
18×24″ on newsprint in china marker
Currently being embroidered

Free shipping in Canada and USA.

Now available for presale on my ETSY site:

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YOUR PURCHASE SUPPORTS SOCK MONKEY THERAPY WITH AT-RISK YOUTH and life skills entrepreneurship development.

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Presale on my ETSY site: embroidered drawing- Dead Bird Series 1 of 4

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Now available for pre-sale on ETSY:

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Original art by Katarina Thorsen
New series. Drawing 1 of 4
China marker studies of dead birds, then embroidered on card stock.
18×24″ on newsprint in china marker
Currently being embroidered

$195.00 USD

Free shipping in Canada and USA.

YOUR PURCHASE SUPPORTS SOCK MONKEY THERAPY WITH AT-RISK YOUTH and life skills entrepreneurship development.

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For I dance
And drink & sing:
Till some blind hand
Shall brush my wing.

If thought is life
And strength & breath:
And the want
Of thought is death…

― William Blake, Songs of Innocence and of Experience

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Dead birds are a recurring image in my graphic novel:

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This adorable sock monkey was made by “Morgan” and proceeds go towards lifeskills development.

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This adorable sock monkey was made by “Morgan” and is approximately 16″ tall.

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You can purchase it on Poststreet’s ETSY shop!

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FREE SHIPPING IN CANADA and USA!

As part of my ACT LOCALLY, DEVELOP GLOBALLY sock monkey therapy, I am making available a selection of sock monkeys (made by youth and community members) to support my new SOCK MONKEY LIFE SKILLS AND ENTREPRENEURSHIP PROGRAM DEVELOPMENT!

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POST STREET sock creations are individually made and hand-sewn.

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ALL ORDERS COME WITH AN ORIGINAL DRAWING BY KATARINA THORSEN!

For more info go to: http://katthorsen.com/donate-bypoststreet-art-house-curriculum-development-series-1-phase-1/

- Katarina Thorsen

CRAFT BLOG http://poststreet.wordpress.com/
YOUTH ARTISAN BLOG http://klasssockmonkey.wordpress.com/
ART BLOG http://katthorsen.com

Multum in Parvo: a lot of dog in a small space! 24 hour SOCK PUG SALE!

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UNTIL MIDNIGHT MAY 28!  PURCHASE ON ETSY!

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The proceeds of any sock pug sales goes toward the development of my Sock Monkey Life Skills Entrepreneurship Program Development Phase 1!

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ORDER YOUR SOCK PUG AT:

To purchase for pickup (no shipping), go to:

PAYPAL SOCK PUG

Sock monkeys from @woollybananas at work with @GlobalSorority @passionteams and @g4gcharity in Cape Town

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 I am truly in awe of and inspired by the powerful work being done globally by my friends at

The Passion Foundation

Global Sorority

Girls 4 Girls

And I am delighted to see our Operation Sock Monkey sock monkeys at work on the ground in Cape Town!

Photos courtesy of Global Sorority and Passion Foundation:

"Today the young women joined the @globalsorority community. As a sign of sisterhood they gave each other a bracelet with an intent of good will that they voiced to the woman as they placed the bracelet on." - Loretta Cella

“Today the young women joined the @globalsorority community. As a sign of sisterhood they gave each other a bracelet with an intent of good will that they voiced to the woman as they placed the bracelet on.” – Loretta Cella

"The young women loving their sock monkeys!! " - Loretta Cella

“The young women loving their sock monkeys!! ” – Loretta Cella

"These girls loved their sock monkeys!!! The squeals and excited was amazing!" - Loretta Cella

“These girls loved their sock monkeys!!! The squeals and excited was amazing!” – Loretta Cella

"@vrybalka leading warm up this morning for @globalsorority #southafrica" - Loretta Cella

“@vrybalka leading warm up this morning for @globalsorority #southafrica” – Loretta Cella

"Young women of @globalsorority #southafrica working on their communication skills" - Loretta Cella

“Young women of @globalsorority #southafrica working on their communication skills” – Loretta Cella

"Sock monkey love #southafrica " - Loretta Cella

“Sock monkey love #southafrica ” – Loretta Cella

"Another awesome positive me #southafrica #leadershipdevelopment" - Loretta Cella

“Another awesome positive me #southafrica #leadershipdevelopment” – Loretta Cella

"Module 5: Cooperation #leadershipdevelopment #women" - Loretta Cella

“Module 5: Cooperation #leadershipdevelopment #women” – Loretta Cella

"Amazing courage shown today as the group writes down all their limitations and works to create change in their emotional and mental beings" - Loretta Cella

“Amazing courage shown today as the group writes down all their limitations and works to create change in their emotional and mental beings” – Loretta Cella

"Positive me drawing from one of the girls" - Loretta Cella

“Positive me drawing from one of the girls” – Loretta Cella

"A jump for joy after releasing their limitations and creating a new way of seeing themselves in this world" - Loretta Cella

“A jump for joy after releasing their limitations and creating a new way of seeing themselves in this world” – Loretta Cella

 

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Frida Kahlo themed window display @GranvilleOptic May 3-31! Proceeds benefits life skills program development!

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Thank you Granville Optical for this wonderful opportunity!

The proceeds of any monkey sales goes toward the development of my Sock Monkey Life Skills Entrepreneurship Program Development Phase 1!

Here are a few highlights from the installation! Huge thank you to Merv Glip for collaborating- especially making all the beautiful paper roses and the paper maiché anatomical hearts! And thank you, Reid Boultbee for making all this happen!

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PROCEEDS BENEFITS

Curriculum Development Series 1:

The @BY POSTSTREET

Sock Monkey

Life Skills and Entrepreneurship Program

for youth groups, schools and community organizations

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All proceeds from purchases oat Granville Optical May 3-31, 2014 are directed towards program development.  

THANK YOU!

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PROJECT DEVELOPMENT: teaching life skills and entrepreneurship through sock monkey making. #craftivism

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THE @BYPOSTSTREET ART HOUSE

GLOBAL: Creative Director, Anna Thorsen

LOCAL: Art Director, Kat Thorsen (Vancouver BC)

MISSION: To awaken creative expression

VISION: To develop global art initiatives

Art Events, Street Art, Apparel, Curriculum Development, Workshops, Workbooks, Speaker Series, Craftivism, Illustration, Portraiture, Documentaries, Graphic Novels

PRESENTS

Curriculum Development Series 1:

The @BY POSTSTREET

Sock Monkey

Life Skills and Entrepreneurship Program

for youth groups, schools and community organizations

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Phase 1:

Pilot Project Phase 1: May to June 2014

Introductory Message from Katarina Thorsen

In my role as art director at @bypoststreet, and as therapeutic art facilitator in the Lower Mainland, I am fulfilling my passion to awaken creative expression in everyone around me.  I do this through visual art, art facilitation, art events, street art, blogging, journaling and craftivism.  Especially sock monkeys.

Sock monkeys are a significant part of my work.  Perhaps my life’s work!

I have been delivering sock monkey therapy and workshops for years and there is nothing quite as magical as witnessing the smiles on participants as they awaken to the healing power of the sock monkey.   I use sock monkeys as part of my therapeutic art classes for at-risk youth and in my general art classes for all ages.  The process is quite miraculous.  The simple process of making a loveable creature allows for a moment of safety and caring.  The socialization and resulting dialogue is part of the magic.  Each stitch in a sock monkey contains thoughts, laughter, tears, dreams, horror, joy, secrets, trust etc.  The natural instinct for many is to want to make more and to share them.

There are so many stories:

H. using a sock monkey to comfort her as she testified in court against an abusive boyfriend.  T. making a sock monkey for his sick friend to take to treatment.  M., struggling with mental health issues, making sock monkeys with worn socks and dental floss and couch stuffing, bringing them to me to send to Africa.  C. using sock monkey making in her work with people living with Alzheimer’s.  A. making a sock monkey for her hero, after his mom passed away.  L. using sock monkeys to process trauma to face her abuser and to create dialogue and raise esteem in her peers.  H. interpreting her favorite artist’s work through sock monkeys then connecting with the artist through her micro-industry online sales and social media.  The entire school (Keith Lynn Alternative Secondary, North Vancouver) infused with sock monkey fever as we made 200 for Operation Sock Monkey.

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Lindsey Hodgson and her Operation Sock Monkey team working GLOBALLY,  delivering 1000’s of sock monkeys to children in South Africa, Nepal, India, Haiti, Northern Canada and more.  Passion Foundation bringing sock monkeys as comfort for young victims at a rape relief crisis center in Cape Town.  Families using sock monkeys to help comfort their terminally ill children and themselves.  The use of sock monkeys in attachment therapy with Clowns Without Borders.  Women in Woza Moya making an income through sock monkey making.

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Photo by Woza Moya Project

Little Maxx annually bringing smiles to children in a hospital in Philadelphia as he gathers sock monkey donations.

Photo courtesy of Operation Sock Monkey

Photo courtesy of Operation Sock Monkey

And the amount of people simply sewing a monkey to help them through emotional crises…

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It’s endless.  The feedback I get could fill a book and maybe it should.  It’s hard to imagine the actual number of people  who utilize the power of sock monkey  to make the world a better place.  And I am honored to be a small, albeit extremely passionate and vocal, member of that tribe.

I still make them on my own.  All the time.  I make them as my art.  They help me calm down.

Photo by Darcy Glip

Photo by Darcy Glip

I make them as a volunteer operative of Operation Sock Monkey.  I am passionate about spreading the word.  I get countless requests to teach sock monkey making.  But there is only one me, so my brother, filmmaker Fred Thorsen, created this wonderful video for me (originally offered as a class for Six Degrees of Creativity):

How To Make A Sock Monkey (HD) from Fredrik Thorsen on Vimeo.

But there is a whole new level of sock monkey therapy that I want to explore. 

• What

I want to develop a life skills/entrepreneurship curriculum/workbook/workshop to increase the extraordinary powerful impact of sock monkey making– a replicable model that allows youth groups, schools, community organizations and Operation Sock Monkey to use sock monkey therapy to create healing opportunities and to teach business skills, business planning and mind-mapping, essential life skills and the power of entrepreneurship through a  project-based learning model.    I want to develop a powerful, easy to use tool to deliver the life skills, to awaken creativity, to increase the production of sock monkeys for income and for charity.  The pilot project will involve seven local young women (graduates of my various youth-at-risk art programming) to test the curriculum and to help facilitate local workshops.

• Why now?

This is a critical time to begin the project as Christmas craft fairs are taking applications now for their 2014 tables, as schools are planning their 2014-2015 scheduling, as my team is ready to go, and as I have opened my life to this moment to dedicate my time to it.

I want to pay the fee to become a licensed Right Brain Business Plan facilitator to increase the power of the curriculum and to be able to expand the @bypoststreet curriculum event further.

I want the curriculum to be translatable and easy to deliver– locally and globally.

I am so tired of seeing cutbacks in programming, seeing schools and community programs have very little funding for workshop facilitators, yet desperate to bring them in.  I want to create an easy means for these organizations to utilize the curriculum I have created on their own.  I don’t want them to struggle financially to be able to deliver this powerful tool.  And I don’t want to have to struggle financially anymore due to programming cutbacks!

As I wrote already, there is only one me, so I want to spread the curriculum by “training the trainers.”

I have dedicated my life to awakening creative expression in others, and now is the time for me to increase the scope of that teaching, to utilize all my knowledge and to build a new career for myself where I actually make a living through sustainable curriculum development around creative expression (from sock monkeys, to visual art, art events, journaling, business development,  etc.).

I am the one to do this.  I got this.  You know I do!

Teaching my nephew Henrik how to sew.  Photo by Darcy Glip.

Teaching my nephew Henrik how to sew. Photo by Darcy Glip.

• How?

I NEED YOUR HELP.

I am looking to raise immediate funds to begin this critical phase to be able to focus on it fully in May and June.  If you have been touched by the work that I do, and would like to see this project come to fruition, please donate.

CURRENTLY FUNDRAISING FOR PHASE 1:

a. Develop the curriculum covering:

Creative Expression, Therapeutic Groups, Art Techniques, Project-based Learning, Employment Skills, Life Skills, Entrepreneurship, Mindmapping, Business Plans, Community Outreach, Operation Sock Monkey, Social Media

b. Right Brain Business Plan Facilitator License- for @bypoststreet Art Director, Katarina Thorsen

c. Develop Pitch and Power Point Presentation

d. Christmas Craft Show application fees

e. Initial Team Development

f. Community Partnerships and Grant Applications

IMMEDIATE and URGENT GOAL: $980

DONATE:

paypal

All donors will be acknowledged on website and in workbook.

Donations of $55 or more will receive a handmade sock monkey with “YES” on it’s belly!

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NEXT STEPS:

Phase 2:

July-October 2014

• Implement Pilot Project with group of seven local young women.

• Provide honorariums to pilot project team.

• Test curriculum, document and evaluate.

• Develop community partnerships (including- Operation Sock MonkeyPassion FoundationGlobal SororityGirls4GirlsMountainside Secondary SchoolByrne Creek Secondary SchoolNorth Shore Neighborhood HouseSquamish NationHawthorne Care Centre)

• Grant applications.

Loretta Cella, Passion Foundation, with sock monkeys headed to South Africa as part of Loretta's work at Patch Centre.

Loretta Cella, Passion Foundation, with sock monkeys headed to South Africa as part of Loretta’s work at Patch Centre.

Phase 3:

October 2014- January 2015

• Create a sustainable model and workbook.

• Create website.

• “Train the trainers” workshop series.

• School and community workshops, craft shows and online sales.

• Community outreach.

• Evaluate.

Phase 4:

Early 2015

• Workshop and speakers series.

• Community collaboration.

• Global outreach- initial cities New York (Harlem Children’s Zone) and San Francisco (The Centre for Young Women’s Development).

• Evaluate sustainable model.

Phase 5:

Fall 2015

• Expand curriculum series to include visual art, street art initiatives, interactive art projects,  journaling, intergenerational projects, and project based learning.

• Expand global outreach to South Africa (Woza Moya).

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Operation Sock Monkey Day for Passion Foundation and the Patch Centre, South Africa

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A beautiful week prepping monkeys culminated in an Operation Sock Monkey workshop today to create 46 sock monkeys (30 of which are ready for the April 24 trip!) as part of a Passion Foundation (Loretta Cella) and Global Sorority (Tia Kelly) project to provide leadership training to young girls and bring comfort to victims at the Patch Centre, South Africa.

Thank you’s to the sock monkey makers who helped me this week:
Darcy G.
Lindsey H.
Loretta C.
Laura M.
Fran W.
Fred T.
Cher H.
Jasper L.
Ashleigh M.
Julian B.
Anna T.
John D.

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