Kids are sick, big push for the opening has passed, it is 100 degrees and I am down.
It was expected. Even though I thought maybe this time I would avoid it, I always have post event funk to manage. Fellow DANK artist, Kathy Frey, and I are going to talk it out on her posdcast. If it is cool, I'll share it with you when it's done.
I'm trying to sit with it rather an exhaust myself pushing against it or wrestle it down with new rules for myself.
Available now on Etsy
The opening party of DANK was a stunning success.
If you missed it, there will be more gallery hours manned by the DANK artists during Nevada City Hot Summer Nights July 16, 23, 30 6:00-9:30.
We will also be open Saturday mornings during the Nevada City Farmer's Market 9:00-1:00.
Lastly, closing night reception August 1 during Nevada City Art Walk 5:00-9:00.
This one is in the backroom. Let me know if you'd like to come by and check it out and I'll meet you in town any time that works.
Of course, I'm always happy to sell it online too!
20" x 20"
Acrylic, Ink, Oil, Graphite on Canvas
If you missed Art Walk, check out The Outside Inn's Blog, Innside Nevada City for some great shots of a great night.
Listen here: Download Dank_kvmr
DANK Inaugural July 11 - August 3, 2014
Artists’ Receptions : Friday July 11 Friday August 1 5 - 9 pm
300 Spring Street Nevada City, CA 95959
For gallery hours and more information please contact :
530 470 8503 or visit us on Facebook
I am off to Monterey this morning with Layla. We are leaving a day early to meet her 2/3 grade class at the aquarium where we will spend the night, but first a stay in a nice hotel. It is about a 4 hour drive and for a minute I thought "I've never driven that far alone before,".
However I'm not alone. I have Layla with me, my daughter and friend. Before you go saying "You need to be a mom and not a friend." I get that. I really do but I think I've leveled up in this mom gig, past the point of joyful chore. I want to enjoy some of benefits of living with a formed and interesting person.
Yesterday watching her perform the lead in her class play, with absolutely no help from me, it dawned on me that all that early mom stuff is starting to pay off. She is responsible, she doesn't lie, her teacher commented, "she's amazing, she's so mature!" So I'm going to enjoy this child I helped to raise and hit the road.
I say "helped" because her will and focus is so shockingly strong, I'm often only a referee of social norms. She is good company and I'm looking forward to watching the sunset over the sea during a different kind of girls' night.
Good time to take a break on my water series for The DANK Inaugural and visit the ocean. Works in progress.
I had an unexpected trip yesterday. Greg texted, "pick up Sabrina from my office" while I was working out. Apparently she flipped out about her shoes when it was time to go on a field trip to the Folsom Zoo. But as is often the case with kids, the thing it's really about isn't what it's about. Driving over, grubby with sweat, I remembered how insistent she was that I NOT drive on this filed trip. Of course when I asked if she wanted me to take her, she felt better and wanted to go. Stinky, tired, no lunch packed and lacking water or change of clothes, it felt like the exact right thing to do. I said goodbye to the studio day I was planning.
I'm not looking for mom of the year compliments here, just sharing and enjoying a moment of clarity. I worry about boundaries with my kids. I think most people walk that tightrope between spoiling them with confidence boosters and letting them learn to make their way on their own. Sabrina tried really hard to go on this trip alone. I'll pretend it was about the shoes and hope she gives it another shot.
It's another lesson learned for myself about progress. I spend quite a bit of my mental energy on a story about being a newbie artist that constantly works and gets little traction. I struggle to be a good mom, decent person and dedicated art citizen responding to challenges as they pop up but rarely chart my progress. Driving past Folsom Prison and considering time served, it dawned on me; I've been doing this for 10 years. I sold this painting in 2004 to a couple that had pears on their wedding invitation. I remember being thrilled as it was one of my first ebay sales that made it to double digits. I can't remember the price (maybe $20?) but I remember the feeling. Hearing about how thrilled she was to find pears, how surprised her husband was, how it will hang in their new home. I wonder about that painting now, and all the paintings I've let go. How each was attached to a goal or a wish, that has actually come true but maybe not the way I expected. The seeds of success are so tiny I often forget they grow and can move the boulders of disappointment.
So I'm back in the studio today and planning a speaking engagement in June and a group show in July. I'm excited to share the details as they come together but I know it will all be about water, flow, time passing, flexibility and strength.
As always, thanks for letting me share.
Tuesday it all felt like too much and unexpected tears were trembling on the cusp of falling at the slightest prompt. I think a lot of people have those days right? Where you didn't even know you were overwhelmed until it is too late and you're crying in a coffee shop because it all seems so stupid and hopeless? If I'm the only one, please don't tell me because I ended up feeling better with the help of some good art friends and I suspect it was cathartic. If a few tears aren't shed, you probably aren't doing it right, right?
So I felt better but weary. Then I remembered, The Jacket.
The Jacket was sent to me by McCall Bennett- Lawrence a woman of magical connection I found on Facebook. Before we were "friends" I noticed her "friends in common" were childhood friends in Cleveland, a former High School boyfriend from Pittsburgh, my college roommate from Maine (I went to school in Baltimore) and LA friends that play music with my husband Greg. I have never not known someone, who knows so many people from every fragmented moment of my life. I'm sure our paths have crossed. I'm sure our experiences would weave together a tapestry that made sense but seeing all those disparate connections on another FB profile was shocking.
So we became digital friends over the years and her good humor, kindness and generous spirit was always welcome in my social media life. One day in a thread mocking J. Crew paint splattered jeans, she suggested I splatter some for her. How fun. Why not?
Guess what, she sent me a jacket to trash.
She also told me to check the pocket. In that pocket was $30.
If thirty "surprise" dollars seems like nothing you, I suspect you don't understand how much art supplies cost or milk for that matter.
I wore the jacket all day yesterday, to the art supply store, to the parent teacher conference, to the local food co-op. I felt wrapped in a cloak of magical thinking, protected from the faulty logic of stress induced worry and what I now realize was a nasty cold coming on.
That is all this art game is, stories and supplies and work...always the work.
I have wanted to try the Golden Open Acrylics for some time. I think I'll like them but even if I don't I know it will be interesting. Surprise money should not go towards tried and true. I'm not sure why but this seemed right.
This and a few bucks for an iced tea is what $30 buys. You know how some paintings just look better? Part of it is the artist but a lot of it is good materials. If it ain't Koons and you're still wondering why the hell it costs so much, this is part of the reason.
I'm going to wear that damn jacket every studio day until it looks sufficently trashed. McCall will get it sent back knowing it was cherished.
No matter what you think you can accomplish, life happens.
I believe all the pep, vim, vigor and life affirming memes in the universe won't get me over the finish line of a worthwhile goal without some drooling and perhaps an ugly cry or two.
So you may not see another blog post until after weigh in next Monday. I'm hanging a show on Thursday at Off Center in Grass Valley. I'll tell you all about it once I get the press release finished. I will also show you some pictures of me there after I get over the fact that my roots make me look like Broomhilda. Hair appointment falls behind painting and then I have to decide what is even going to be hung and how I'm going to sell it. I really want to do another big ebay auction but the moving parts...all the moving parts! I need a minute to put it together in my head like constructing a tiny watch.
Do you see a theme? Overwhelmed perhaps?
Perhaps, but the call from school today asking to pick up a sick Layla put it all in perspective. I can only do what I can do.
You can't "have it all" and anyone that tries to tell me differently better be wearing some protective mouth gear.
Here are two pieces I hope to finish soon with a minimal amount of tears.
See you on the other side and thanks for all the support!
My friend Erin was kind enough to guest blog today. I often rely on her for reality checks in the virtual world. She is either perfectly calm and balanced, ready to talk me off a ledge, or just as freaked out as I am. Either way, it works perfectly. We bounce ideas around but mostly remind each other to seek balance when feeding the gaping maw of the digital content beast.
I thought of her last night as I fell into bed without blogging and felt a little guilty about it. I didn't write a post but I did work my ass off on art stuff. I also created by first 3D barcode cause I'm cool like that. I thought if I called Erin, blogger extrodiare, she would offer me dispensation and tell me not to worry about it.
Today I painted painted painted in the spring sun with a redheaded woodpecker watching over me. Here is a little movie with some sneaks of works in progress.
Erin here, thanks Sheila for inviting me to share my 2 cents on your blog today. I love that you share with your friends (both virtual and in real life) the creative process through your blog. While I'm an active blogger who loves to share her love for our town (InnSide Nevada City) and my creative greeting card agenda (Homemade Cards by Erin), I wasn't sure what I could contribute to Sheila's Thinner Winner Creative Crunch blog agenda. I'm not on a weight loss goal mission and already practice the regular exercise agenda. Our family continues to try to make dietary changes for the better (through less sugar and limited processed foods), I realized that the best piece of advice that I could offer up, was the motto of perspective. I feel that my exercise habits feed my creativity and my creativity is enhanced through eating better, but sometimes it all falls apart. Art and exercise are a part of my mix and need to be, despite what life throws at me.
Yeah, what she said.