Goings on with Vivi Magoo: a 2020 update

Barb SolemGeneral Information, News, VIVI MAGOO NEWSLETTER, Vivi Magoo Presents Art Retreats and Other Inspirations

Greetings from Vivi Magoo!

It’s been a long time since we’ve been together or spoken with each other, and we want to reach out to let you know what’s going on in our world and find out what you’ve been up to. 

We can’t believe we’re already halfway through August, and we wonder where the time has gone. In spite of everything that has happened since March when life came to a grinding halt and time stood still, the last several months have flown by, and rightfully so. We’ve been busy at Vivi Magoo, trying to maintain a semblance of order and continuity for you, our students and instructors. We’ve been keeping our eye on the ball with regards to our in-person events, and at the same time, we’ve been refocusing our attention a bit (we lovingly call it pivoting – our new favorite word for 2020) and expanding into new areas of growth and opportunities for you, our Vivi Magoo family. Smaller, more intimate gatherings and online options are our current focus, and we want to share what we’ve been doing behind-the-scenes to create ways for you to grow as artists and gather as members of our tribe.


While we would love nothing more than to bring you a wonderful and fabulous Desert retreat once again this coming February, in light of the devastating pandemic, we are being very cautious about moving forward with a large event such as that until it is safe to do so. Because of this, we have put The Desert on pause, continue to monitor events related to the healthcare crisis, and just as soon as we are confident the threat has been eliminated, we will jump on plans to bring you the best ever Desert retreat! It will be the biggest and best celebration and reunion, and we cannot wait for that day to arrive. Reuniting is our goal, and when possible, we will make that happen for our community – you have our word on it! 


In early 2020 and before the coronavirus reared its ugly little head, we had decided to expand our model to include a new opportunity to gather and grow, and we decided to call it “Vivi Magoo Metals Week”. Envisioned as a scaled down version of The Desert, we saw an opportunity to bring students and instructors together in a more intimate setting to offer what we do in Tucson, a menu-based schedule of classes where you can select as many or few classes as you’d like. How often will we offer Metals Week? That depends on you! We are prepared to offer multiple opportunities throughout the year. Once a month? Sure. More often than that? We can do that too! Watch as we add more classes throughout the winter and into spring!


Our dream has come true, and we are proud to offer our first ever Metals Week to you, our dear family.  We’re excited to have Studio Luna Verde help us launch this new opportunity next month in Chandler, Arizona. 

Studio Luna Verde
September 15 – 17th
9 am – 4:30 pm daily

Learn more about Metals Week featuring Studio Luna Verde here

Three days of in-person classes with Ace McCasland, we are offering a very limited seating capacity, keeping your safety in mind. Our primary focus is on your health and well-being, and we’ve devised a plan that we think, to the best of our ability,  is going to do exactly that. Next to our physical health, we know our emotional and mental health are very important, and offering smaller more easily managed retreats is our way of keeping our community healthy on all fronts. 

Here’s what we will be doing to help keep everyone safe:

  • Wellness checks and temperature monitoring each morning when students arrive in class
  • We are providing masks
  • and gloves 
  • and hand sanitizer at each bench 
  • and disinfectant spray at each bench
  • Completely outfitted individual workstations for each student so no one has to move around the classroom or share equipment at all
  • Social distancing with benches at least six-feet apart from one another 

With all our thoughtful care and planning that went into this event, and with complete buy-in from everyone attending, we think this is going to be a very meaningful gathering on multiple levels. 

There may be a seat or two left in one or more of her classes, and we expect those to fill soon as the event draws near. If you’re interested in signing up for one of the available seats, let us know, and we’ll help you get registered. 

THE ACADEMY by Vivi Magoo

Our newest addition to Vivi Magoo, The Academy, will offer online classes in a variety of styles – Streaming (real-time), On-demand (prerecorded), and a Hybrid of both. Taught by instructors you know and love, and, in typical Vivi Magoo style, some new and talented upcoming designer-instructors who will dazzle you with their creativity and energize you with their unique style. 

Streaming (real-time) classes 

will allow our students and instructors to connect in real time – not only for the purpose of teaching and learning, but also for the express purpose of connecting and forging friendships and relationships amongst our Vivi Magoo family. 

On-Demand (prerecorded) 

will give you the flexibility of viewing and learning at your own pace and on your own time table. 

As with Streaming (real-time) and Hybrid, our On-Demand (prerecorded) lineup will include a private and protected chat room where you can connect with others in the class, share photos and videos of your accomplishments, pose questions, offer tips and techniques, and socialize with your friends in a private and protected safe space. 


This unique version will combine streaming (real-time) instruction with On-demand (prerecorded) videos and printed handouts. The recorded videos will give you an up close and personal bird’s-eye-view of the process, and you’ll have access to those videos for a period of time after the class ends so you can practice your way into a groove of muscle memory – insuring retention of the skills practiced and learned. 

Launching of The Academy

We’ve just launched our first Hybrid class, and we couldn’t be happier with the results. Only three seats left as we write this, and we expect those will sell out in the next few days. Check it out, and let us know what you think.

Starry Starry Night
April Bower

Learn more about Starry Starry Night featuring April Bower here

  • September 19th
  • 9 am until 10 am
  • Introductions and class overview
  • September 20th
  • 8:45 am until 5 pm
  • Instruction offered by April
  • Demo videos to watch as a group and to have available for repeated viewing 
  • Time to work independently in your own studios 
  • Q-&-A sessions
  • September 25th
  • We’re calling it “Sip and Share”
  • 3 pm until 4 pm (linger longer if you’re having fun!)
  • Bring your favorite beverage, and plan to kick your heels up and relax! 
  • You’ve done it! You’ve completed your first Vivi Magoo online class! Hooray for you!
  • Share your finished (or WIP) projects with each other 
  • Ask questions of April and each other
  • Share thoughts
  • Gather as friends and Vivi Magoo family 
  • Celebrate – reunions with old friends – new friendships forged in class – new skills, tips and techniques learned and practiced, – new projects completed.

We know you will find The Academy meaningful and a wonderful addition to your arsenal of ways to learn and grow – as artists and as friends.


Thanks for letting us bend your ear today. Text or email us, and let us know what you think. As always, we are here to serve you – our Vivi Magoo family; you are our primary focus and concern. 

Until we see each other again, online or in person, stay safe – stay healthy. Know we’re thinking of you and praying for all that is good to happen in your life. 

With love and gratitude,

(602) 509-6030 (cell)
(602) 615-4136 (cell)