Wearing Many Hats...though not all at the same time!

Poor, neglected blog!  Unless you're a friend, or "like" my Kindred Spirit Studios Facebook page, you probably thought I'd fallen off the proverbial face of the Earth.  But no, I've just been crazily, and sometimes unbelievably busy with my various artistic pursuits. I often say that I wear many hats, though not all at the same time...definitely a Glamour "don't"!

Here's my "hat" list:  Mixed Media Artist, Art teacher, Resident Artist working with adults with disabilities, Art Workshop presenter, President of the Carolina Mixed Media Art Guild, Art Consultant to the African American Cultural Festival, mother, wife, sister, friend, citizen of the world!

I can't possibly catch you up on everything, but I'll try to hit the highlights.  So, let's go back, go way on back, go way, oh, way back when....(with apologies to Aretha Franklin for the probable misquote)

Spring:  In addition to my teaching duties (As you may recall, I teach art classes for kids through the Raleigh Parks & Recreation system.  More on that later.), I was also creating work for my outdoor art shows for the year.  In April, I competed in a Facebook contest during the run-up to the Gosport Arts Festival, where I placed second in online "Likes" for my 'Radiant Spiral VI' wall hanging.  As it turned out, my booth was right next to the winner, who turned out to be a lovely person, and fantastic artist, Pamela Dzaet Hill.  Sales at Gosport were disappointing, and I won't do the show again.  I did meet a group of African American women quilters who are based in the Chesapeake, VA area, whose work was inspiring, so I'm glad I went. 

Also during the spring, I began to think about the fact that I do many, varied things in my life as an artist, and changed my Facebook page description from just "Artist" to:  Artist.  Art Instructor.  Art Consultant.  These three descriptors seemed to sum it up nicely.  On the Art Consultant front, in May, I accepted the position of Art Gallery Walk Director for the African American Cultural Festival of Raleigh and Wake County (quite a mouthful, right?!).  AACF is a show I've done twice before, and I was interested in helping it to grow and prosper as a 'go-to' destination for African American art in Raleigh.  And so, from May through the show during Labor Day weekend, I was immersed in recruiting artists and merchandise vendors, reviewing applications, serving on the jury, commissioning the show poster, along with all the other myriad tasks involved in putting together a large outdoor art show.  Luckily, I didn't have to do it alone, and will be forever grateful to Skyler Hawkins and Carly Prentis Jones for their support and assistance. 

Photo credit:  Linda Tucker Photography
June brought my Wellesley College reunion (35th!), and the following weekend, my second appearance at the Columbia Festival of the Arts.  We love this show. This year was a good, though not great sales year.  Whatever happens with sales, we always enjoy being in Columbia, MD, and seeing our creative friends Larry "Poncho" Brown, and Linda Tucker.  Linda is a talented photographer, and I was able to squeeze in a photo session with her for my new publicity shots---see left. 

Summer:  Work heated up (pun intended) on AACF, I was still teaching 5 classes a week, and creating work for the shows left to do.  I also completed another Artist Residency at Wake Enterprises, teaching art classes two mornings a week to adults with disabilities.  We mounted another art exhibit at the end of June, to great acclaim.  I really love working with this population; the rewards are many, not the least of which is knowing I'm bringing enjoyment and the opportunity to be creative to staff and participants alike.  In July, Stan and I took a long weekend to recharge our creative batteries in Asheville, NC, one of our favorite art-filled destinations.   We knew this was to be one of the last weekends we'd have to ourselves, given my schedule.  After that, I convened the AACF jury, continued to teach, and created new mixed media work for my shows in August, September and October.  

August brought the Seawall Art Show, in Portsmouth, VA.  A lovely setting, excellent organization, but another disappointing sales outing (the Portsmouth/Chesapeake area just isn't my audience, I've become convinced).  I was able to reconnect with a dear friend and her new husband from my days in Boston, which made the trip enjoyable, if not lucrative.   

Tired yet?  I sure was, and the biggest event was still to come; AACF the weekend immediately following the Seawall show!  More on that in my next post, which won't take another 7 months...I promise.

Photo credit:  Linda Tucker Photography



Syd said…
Reflecting, are you wondering how, just how in the world you do it? I was!
Michelle said…
Yes, Syd. Lots of lists, a good calendar, and help from supportive teams, including you!