I’ll keep this very brief. (For now.)
2020 was hell. (The Match.com add with Satan falling in love with 2020 as his perfect match was too spot on.)
I won’t go into the COVID-19 issues. Most of us had them and they are far more serious than my creative losses. I could handle the health losses. I was fortunate. I had insurance, I had a secure income source and home. But what nearly broke me was the creative losses.
First, I lost access to the studio and kilns necessary to create ceramics — for the third time. I then decided I would accept this creative limitation and re-focus on 2D work. Going into the basement to review the work in my old portfolio I discovered that the 42+ inches of Winter Storm snow (requiring 3 days of shoveling to release the cars and walkways) had backed up about 1.5 inches of standing dirty water. Once I bailed out, mopped, and disinfected the basement, I discovered a) my water-resistant portfolio had been left standing on the basement floor by someone and b) it wasn’t very water-resistant. All of the 2D work I’d kept from my pre-ceramic days was ruined. Not only had the paper wicked up the water but it was already starting to mold as well as fall apart.
Okay, after some initial anger and grieving I decided I would accept the loss and take it for a sign that I should focus on developing new 2D skills and work. Meanwhile, I would go and finish my Fibonacci Sweater. I had miscalculated on the neck and was off on the final pattern count, so I took it back, re-knit the last 6 inches, knitted the should seams together and proudly laid it out to admire my work.
Only to see a large moth hole in the first transition of the pattern about 3 inches from the bottom. It was such a non-threatening problem. Such a small problem in the larger scheme of things. Such a first world problem. But it nearly broke me.
Fortunately, I am resilient and have always worked from the philosophy: If you aren’t happy with the way things are, change something.
I did an assessment and decided:
- I am damn lucky. I have the education, skills, and tools to make changes. I have the resources to seek out solutions.
- Art that requires large, heavy equipment and/or location permanence isn’t in my future, so I need to embrace a portable art form.
- I no longer want to do tech work or teach tech (even assuming someone would hire me at my age). I want to focus on spending the rest of my life on what I love and what gives me a sense of joy and meaning.
- This means developing my art and sharing my journey, as well as what I’ve found helpful in building resilience and personal growth, with others.
So here we are. I am going to post what I am learning, doing, and discover — including things I discover that I think will help you in your personal journey to success. I hope you join me.