I am very happy in the midst of this three-day weekend. The past week was so busy and frustrating at work. I was easily irritated about nearly everything. Almost all of it had to do with communication. Either somebody not communicating or twisting facts or somebody not paying attention. Next week should be better.
I feel good today because I am letting go of the things that I don’t have to do that are annoying, and I am giving my time and energy to the things that bring me joy. I like my paying job a whole lot, but I’m really diggin’ my identity as an artist these days. I feel like I am fulfilled, like I am finally living my life authentically, which includes all the bumps and obstacles of life’s journey. It’s a path that I have chosen, instead of following the different directions in which other people nudged me. Some of those alternate paths taught me things that I needed to know, and when I reached the ends of them, I backtracked to my own path instead of getting out the machete or the bulldozer or simply sitting, stuck, waiting for somebody to open it up. I imagine that there are still many of those sidetracks ahead. I hope so – they make the journey more interesting.
A different path is the Local Food movement. I would compare it to one of those old two-lane highways that often criss-cross the big Interstates. Sandy and I frequently will take these parallel roads when we travel because we love to see the small towns and real countryside more than we care for speed most of the time. In my life, the old highway “food that is good, clean, and fair” will always be present or nearby – not the main highway anymore, but sometimes running concurrently with it. It is a part of my life, but not my major focus now.
I am proud to be a part of the movement, and I am so happy that it has become more mainstream and most of all that young people are moving toward it. Our farmers are aging out, and somebody needs to pick up the reins. Restaurants are now advertising local food and naming their direct sources. It’s becoming good business to bolster the local economy. And there are SO many journalists and bloggers covering Slow Food and local small businesses that I am grateful to be able to step away from writing about it other than how it continues to connect with my personal whole-life journey.
I finished the Blackbird tapestry yesterday! It will be a while before I can post a photo of the entire thing because of its position on the loom. I’m starting a new tapestry based on that stunning sunrise I saw a little over a year ago at Fort Worden State Park in Port Townsend, Washington. This one will glow with silk, many strands of color that I have hand-dyed over the years supplemented with rich hues that I bought. It will be very different from the Blackbird tapestry, which only had two colors.
Susanne and her student came over yesterday, and I lent her my 8-harness Schacht table loom and stand. It feels good to pass on this equipment to a beginning weaver. If she likes it, I’m going to sell it to her cheap on an interest-free payment plan.
I was juried in to Elements Gallery, but they still need local artists to join the co-op to make it work. However, they have sweetened the deal with a more flexible plan. Here is the email that Lorrie sent me to share. If you would like her email address to respond, please leave a comment with your email ONLY in the email field and I will email you with it privately so that your email addresses won’t get on a spambot’s list.
Elements Gallery (North Carolina Pottery and Fine Craft) is going Co-Op. We have done well in the 8 months we were open, building a good reputation and customer base. But, it takes 3 years to establish a business and there is no one of us that can carry it for that long alone. We are looking for local 3 D artists of Hand made art (pottery, metal, wood, fiber, glass, jewelry, etc) The deal basics are that each artist will pay for shelf space and a 10% commission on all art sold and commit to working at the Gallery one day a month. In comparison with many co-ops, this is a great deal. There will be no up front buy in, and the monthly pay in and commission is fairly low. Plus we already have almost a year of business under our belts and have some good momentum going. Customers are very pleased with what they see when they come to our gallery and constantly comment on what a need we fill.
We offer a place for local artists to show and sell their work. As a co-op there are many exciting ideas that we can work on and implement for the local art community. We are offering 3 different space options $25 for one shelf, $50 for 3 shelves and $75 for 5 shelves. Shelf sizes are approximately 3 feet long by a foot deep. Each artist will also have an opportunity to offer workshops, classes and do demos.
I will add that they are looking for a year commitment and three months in advance, then the payment would be monthly. This makes a lot of sense from a stability and budgeting standpoint. And it will be juried by three people to keep the standard high.
Also, I will probably offer some book and fiber art workshops and maybe a small tapestry/weaving group if this thing pans out. I feel very optimistic that it will.
Okay, coffee’s out. Ciao.