The first few weeks of this year were dedicated to changing banks from big to credit union, redoing my bookkeeping system, updating my business license and other really boring behind-the-scenes things. I spent a lot of time on the phone, waiting for a representative, getting disconnected and all the usual things that happen when dealing with big companies. Still, I felt super productive and like I was getting myself squared away for the new year. I felt that working on these things would get me in a good headspace for starting the year, but when I got back to doing studio work, it felt like I was forcing myself. I made some stuff and never share it and started feeling like it was pointless.
The country feels crazy right now as many of us are fighting for sanity, rights and democracy. On January 21, 2017 I was one of the over 25,000 who marched in San Jose, CA for the Women's March. It was so inspiring and motivating to do so, seeing friends and family, all sexes, ages, races and ethnicities there. What a relief to see people in San Jose, across the country and world stand united against what is happening in the White House right now. Now that January is almost over, I have this renewed sense of creativity and feel like anything goes.
Some big, dumb reminders I've had lately:
- Make more art! Make lots of it.
- Make better art. Take your time. Focus. Turn off phone.
- Books are just as important to art making as any other inspiration (nature, museums, music, etc.)
- I am currently reading Wildwood by Colin Meloy and illustrated by Carson Ellis. I really love it so far! It's bringing up all kinds of nostalgia for books I loved as a kid. They really have a magical voice together. I just finished The Name of the Wind, a fantasy novel by Patrick Rothfuss. It was amazing. These fantasy tales are really getting me through the glumness of this time.
- I subscribe to Meighan O'Toole's newsletter, which I highly recommend. She sends out some tech news, but mixes in a lot of great and relevant stuff. She recently shared The Year in Illustration from the New York Times, which I thought was pretty cool.
- While reading this interview with Jean Jullien I was reminded of how when you just keep working you evolve in ways you can't even imagine. He was working as a graphic designer and started doing brush pen illustrations to get away from the computer. He also reminded me of how those you admire influence your work. AND he reminded me about experimenting and not just repeating yourself. Whew, it's a good interview.
- Here's a read on the Empire Seven Studios art gallery in San Jose and their unknown future.
- This interview with Inka Essenhigh is really great if you have time to listen/watch.
- This video on Georgia O'Keeffe is super interesting. It was surprising to find out that her time at Lake George was her most prolific time of art making. If you don't know, Lake George was her husband's family vacation home and is often mentioned as a place that O'Keeffe wanted to leave or did not care for. We associate her far more with the work from New Mexico.