Wingmaker Arts Collaborative~Karon Luddy

“To live a creative life, we must lose our fear of being wrong.” Joseph Chilton Pearce

Some people we remember the moment we meet because that moment is so pivotal. I met Karon Luddy fifteen years ago when we both attended a poetry reading by Cathy Smith Bowers. The reading was held at a Barnes and Noble in Charlotte, but all three of us have a Lancaster, SC connection- Cathy and Karon are both Lancaster natives and I’m a current resident. There was a handful of people that night, none of us knew each other yet after the reading, several of us formed a poetry critique group, Karon and I among them, that met regularly for several years. Such is the stuff of friendships that  are meant to be. Karon and I cross paths often and I was excited to see her at Wingmaker Arts Collaborative in May.


Karon Luddy

The wall of Karon’s studio is papered with pages from her literary work in progress.

Karon's wall of words

Karon’s wall of words

Karon~ I was working as an Apple Computer Executive when my daughter told me, “You’ve always lived your life as an artist. So why don’t you do it?” I listened. I did The Artist’s Way and that gave me the permission to be an artist.

I’ve been at Wingmaker since the beginning. It’s a creative home. The creative energy comes and stays, it’s accumulative. It’s all positive here, no negatives. There’s a lot of freedom, no ‘have to’s’.

It’s important work we’re doing here, it makes it easier for the art to be birthed. It’s a sacred space and it’s important we give ourselves permission to have this. It’s soulwork. My husband sees me happier, content and lighter!

I come here and it’s Wow! Wow! Wow! Then it’s fear, fear, fear. 🙂

A cross Karon made years ago that's central on her table

A cross Karon made years ago that’s central on her table

My mom recently passed away and I was blessed to have some time with her before. I brought her up here and we had a tea, just the two of us in this beautiful space with all the art. She always lived her life around nature and beauty and I think I get that  from her.

My visual art is usually collage. And I’m currently working on my second novel. It’s wonderful to  have the tables in the classroom space so I can spread out my pages, rearrange them. I have my monthly writing group with just women. In addition to teaching The Artist’s Way, I teach two classes in the American Studies Department at the University of NC-Charlotte – Growing Up Southern and The American South: The Land Where the Blues Began, which is based on Alan Lomax’s award-winning book, The Land Where the Blues Began. Both are writing intensive classes.

I love teaching. It’s my way of paying back. My 6th grade teacher, Perry Gardner lit my spark. I believe my purpose in being here on this Earth is to inspire people to live their unique, creative, beautiful self.

Kim’s note~ Karon was recently awarded First Place in Kakalak 2013 for one of her beautiful collages.

Visit Karon and meet Karlene, the darling protagonist of her first novel, Spelldown.


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5 Responses to Wingmaker Arts Collaborative~Karon Luddy

  1. Karon Luddy says:

    Kim, thanks so much for sharing the story about Wingmaker Arts Collaborative. And for interviewing all of us. You’ve also told a great truth: When we support and collaborate with others —our lives are often enriched.

    • Thank you. Karon it’s been such a treat to share your place and introduce you beautiful women! Have a picture of Spelldown to post as well. And what’s this about your next novel coming out?! Info and I’ll add to your post!!

  2. Claire says:

    … ‘inspire people to live their unique, creative, beautiful self’… OMGosh, I can hear Karon saying those words! That is exactly what she does for others! I’m happy to say that I’ve not been the same since meeting her (at least five/six years ago?) at a Black Mountain writer’s retreat. She was an instructor (with Cathy Smith Bowers) and Karon just gave and gave of herself, encouraged all of us, and more importantly – gave us permission – to be ourselves!
    Kim – thank you for this continuing journey, sharing Wingmaker, and the wing makers who inhabit the place, and for allowing me to ‘feel’ Karon’s spirit enveloping me once again.
    I can actually see Karon and Rebecca – both smiling their beautiful smiles – and feel that special energy that surrounds those women. I always envision them standing within a waterfall of energy – energy that’s just twinkling around them – a very quiet, calm, uplifting, and safe energy, and I’m grateful to them for being so generous of themselves as artists.
    Just like you, Kim. Thank you!

    • And when she says it those blue eyes just light up don’t they! Thanks for the encouragement Claire. I hope the series inspires others to take a trip to Wingmaker and take some classes or at least check out the artists’ work. Amazing what has come out of the Black Mountain Writers’ Retreat … including our friendship!

    • Claire Darling,
      I so miss seeing your beautiful face and hearing your laughter. Thanks for your sweet comments. We sure had ourselves a fabulous time in Black Mountain. Such great memories. Thanks for your lovely comments.

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