>It’s corny and it’s traditional, but as I look over this year in art and life, I am overwhelmed with blessings:
- A family who is left to fend for themselves (sometimes they don’t think this a bad thing!) for half of the year while I travel from show to show. It’s wonderful to come home, whether the show was a bust, or I earned enough to pay the mortgage for two months. They don’t care. They are happy to see me walk in door.
- A husband who loves every piece of art I produce. I have plenty of critics around me. It’s good to have a fan.
- A daughter who has an artist’s eye and Gandhi’s soul.
- A son who helps me see the world a little slower and a little kinder.
- An extended family who are interested and patient and supportive, even though some don’t really understand what or why I do what I do. It doesn’t matter. They think it’s cool.
- Friends. They are generous and funny, thoughtful and critical, talented and brilliant. And they want to hang with me! They insist on buying my work when I’m happy to give it to them. They live here in St. Louis, and all over North America: Tucson; Palm Springs; London , ON, Lincoln, NE; Montana; Tornoto; Memphis; South Dakota; upstate New York; New York City; Chicago; Madison, WI; Tenneessee; Washington, D.C. All amazing people and all very, very dear.
- A space to work. This is a big deal. The basement is still filled with older work and the dining room table is often covered and piled high… BUT a real studio is a gift. I was fortunate enough to find space last year. That space hasn’t worked lately and a terrific friend, (see above!) has loaned me her studio while she’s in graduate school. This is a little like loaning out a husband for weekly chores (no, not that kind!). A studio space is sacred; to share it is unbelievably generous. Thank you Ilene and Scott (and Noah and Gili, of course!)
- A space to shoot portraits. One minute I’m working as a fine artist and the next as a portrait photographer. Or are they they same thing? Doesn’t matter. The spaces I work in are different. When I went to Dana Colcleasure at Wombats and asked if I could rent some space to shoot portraits, she didn’t even hesitate! She and Kanagroo Kids have been promoting me and welcoming me. Thank you!
- My fellow artists who keep me sane and cared for when I’m on the road, who put me up when I need a place to stay, who offer constructive criticism that helps me improve and grow, and who understand without saying a word.
- The ability to work and make a living as an artist. Wow!
- Collectors and clients. Working an art fair is hard work. Long days, bad food, hotels, travel, setting up, tearing down. Why would anyone do this? The people, of course! My husband will tell you I’m lousy at parties. I hate small talk and trivial chatting. But I love talking to people who have something interesting to say. I get to meet the best people in my booth. I also get to meet some who only want to tell me they don’t like or don’t get my work. I ignore those folks. It makes my day when someone connects with my work and wants to tell me about it. Some people’s whole lives — dreams, disappointments, fears, accomplishments — come spilling out while they stand inside my little white tent/gallery. That’s a lot to be trusted with.
- Gallery directors and owners — the good ones. You know who you are. We are partners in the art world. This year I’m very grateful to Art St. Louis and Imagine on Main in suburban Chicago. But to the gallery who stuck my work in a closet for six months– plllltt!
- The ability to give back.
- Did I mention my family and friends? Happy Thanksgiving!