Reflect, a year in review

Black Tupelo, 2018

Black Tupelo, 2018


I’ve liked the yearly word mantra approach instead of resolutions, for 2018 mine was SETTLE. After three years of moving four times, five different jobs and shifting our lives I was ready to sink my feet in and be in one place physically and beyond. The word settle became my grounding rhythm.

In 2018 I claimed the title of “artist.” My art studio was entirely built out, and I covered the floors in paint. It was my first full year of flipping between freelance and my art practice. I found my flow in the studio but with life as well. I no longer used google maps to find my way around town, I learned the names of my yoga teachers, and our house felt like home. With these grounding elements, I was able to stretch my art practice and focus on accomplishing some goals. I had my first big solo show in Portland and various group showings as well. My artwork got published in Maker's Magazine, and I had two artist features that allowed me to open up and talk about my practice. I met and began to build an artist community for myself. These steps, little and big have created a solid foundation for me and my work. I produced over 40 pieces of art. Stretched and started a lot more.

Light, dark. Good, bad. Nothing is black or white. We exist in the greyscale. 2018 also brought a lot of lows. I was rejected (well, waitlisted on one) from every residency I applied to and several shows as well. My mental and emotional health crashed in the spring. All the significant shifts finally caught up to me, and my depression was in full force. I was sorting out health issues alongside this (man, it's all connected) but rounded a corner by May.

All the way through, I've felt good about my work and my practice. I've seen it evolve and improve and I am looking forward to building upon this momentum. I enter 2019 feeling mentally and physically sound. I've started to write various proposals and let's just say the ideas are brewing. I am excited for this year and what changes it may bring.

This year I will lean on the word ACCEPTANCE. I appreciate the nuance of the dictionary meaning and psychological meanings (self-acceptance especially). I hope that becoming more in tune with this word I can set more boundaries for myself and put my energy into things I can control and not ones I cannot. There will be a lot of letting go and coming to terms.

2019, here we go.