I’m not going to discuss politics or how I feel about the election results this week. A lot of other people are doing that already. What I will say is that this week was an emotional one and I had to find a way to cope with all of it. Aside from hugging Bruno (who’s not a fan of hugs) and eating ice cream (something I already turn to in difficult times) I decided to use the act of creating as therapy.
Happy Mother’s Day. I miss you and I think about you all the time. Especially times like this, when holidays and special occasions come up. I’ll be graduating this month and it won’t be quite the same without out. I started this MFA in September of 2011, not long after you left, and it’s been one heck of a ride.
I was first inspired to write this because I read a similar list by another blogger. The partial list sat in the drafts section of this blog for a while.…
Who are you? Do you know? And are you comfortable with it? This question has been on my mind lately. In part because of a book I’m reading (more on this later) and because during a presentation, a photographer I admire said something along the lines of ‘be who you are and be awesome at it”. It got me thinking if I was really being myself (both online and off) and it triggered a whole plan for this blog.
“In a world of comparison and conformity, make your own statement. Honor your own truth. Have the courage to be yourself; risk speaking your own thoughts and claiming your emotions. Share your vulnerabilities, tears, doubts, and insecurities; let others experience the real you. Have the courage to be yourself and realize that you are a wonderful person.”
— Author Unknown
Several years ago I was forced by circumstances to re-consider what really matters.
And I am grateful.
It’s much too easy to get through the day, the weeks, the years and not even realize where you’ve been. It’s easy to go through the motions and keep moving forward in situations that give us nothing. But when we don’t pay attention, we can miss out on so much. What does it mean to pay attention? It means to be fully aware of where you are and what you are doing and who you are with. Some call it mindfulness or being in the moment. Call it whatever you want as long as you make a conscious effort to do it.
“Success is when you have the courage to fight for your dream, your character, and your integrity with everything you’ve got. It means taking huge risks, over and over, and saying, ‘I gave it my best.'” – Piper Mackay
Everyone’s definition of success is different and ultimately it boils down to what matters to you and what makes you happy. For some success could be owning a fancy car or having a closet filled with designer clothes. For me, success is being able to decide how I spend my time. Last year, when I learned she had cancer, I decided that spending as much time as possible with my dog meant more to me than anything so I left the Bay Area and moved back to San Diego. No amount of material gain was going to be worth more to me than being with her during her last months and if I had the chance to do it over I would do things exactly the same. It takes courage to define success on your own terms but to live life by someone else’s standards will never satisfy you.
Last fall I received an email I thought was spam. Someone contacted me and asked if I would be interested in partnering with Pottery Barn and become one of their artists. I thought it was a joke. Turned out it wasn’t. I kept it secret while we were in negotiations because I actually was afraid it might not happen. But it did. It is an incredible honor that I my work is part of Pottery Barn’s wall art collection. The whole process was really interesting.
As is my tradition (since 2010 :-)) I wanted to take the last photograph of 2012 on December 31st. I went out with the intention of getting local Christmas lights…