I have been a working artist for three years in March: March 31st, to be exact.
That was my last day as a receptionist in Los Angeles.
These three years have been the most incredible, challenging, gratifying, lovely and short years of my whole adult life. Working for yourself pushes every boundary you try to construct, undoes your most concrete plans and sometimes leaves you breathless, without a rock to stand on.
This is exciting; this is life at its least predictable and most raw. I would imagine having a baby or being a field journalist in a war-torn country would be much more intense, but for now, for me, this is the knife edge I choose to balance upon.
Having my work copied has been such a remarkable, infinitely valuable gift - the feeling of safety I had from creating what I found to be completely original pieces was a lullaby I wore like armor... a myth, really: there is no safety in creation.
This realization has made for dark moments, has sent me down rivers of icy fear and left my tooling bench empty for the better part of a month, save custom orders and feeble attempts at 'pushing through', which any artist knows is a fallacy:
you are either filled or empty: very seldom is there a half-way point, and when you incorporate muscling into your creations it has a tendency to crush the very delicate thing you most want to set free:
This brings me to the point of sharing: I have found inspiration in this season of death, meaning I have embraced my winter, held the sense of cold and still that change brings.
My biggest inspiration over the last few weeks has been the bird skull found on Wright's Beach:
I am tooling something using its image.
It is on a canvas that may be finished.
In my dream last night, Anthony told me what kind of bird it was: I woke up without the knowledge, but I remember it was a bird I really loved and Dream Allison was very, very happy to learn its identity.
After three years of tooling things that are alive and vibrant, I am reaching down deep to retrieve a pearl buried in a piece of something once living, now gone.
This is a very new place, a thrilling new adventure.