The end of 2015 came with a lot of changes for me. Those changes began in August, actually, when my dad was diagnosed with cancer and my year-long job at the Reggio-Emilia inspired preschool, the second preschool I had worked at in as many years, came to an end. I was ready for a break, feeling like I needed time to get my head around news about my dad- and in subsequent months I launched both cloverbrown.com (she had lived at a free Wordpress site for years!) and Post, my first foray into art subscription.
I'm proud of my work from the late summer and fall of 2015, and in the winter I went back east to take care of my family. What was supposed to be a 2 week stay turned into 6 weeks. I came back to Portland on December 31st, of all days, and rang in the new year back with my Portland family- my sister's family- just days before a delightful (and crazy!) snow and ice storm hit the region.
Now I am working, making up for so much time out of traditional work and aiming to build some wealth and skills. I've spent the last 5 months in small circles and working more outside of the house puts me in the flow of new people, opening me up to communities and synchronicity I might have missed in my small world. It has me thinking, though, about how several months like that can go by, big blocks of time.
So what do I want to bring in this year? What's 2016 all about? What can we expect here on this new, and still-as-yet-expanding website?
2016 is ringing in as a year of changes. It's already begun. I promised you more storytelling in 2015 and I believe, as I'm sowing the seeds of movement and financial recovery, that those stories will feel the safety of these abodes I'm constructing for them. Still, I must construct safe spaces around myself. I'm in my 30's and have run out of patience with the Starving Artist model.
I plan on creating more ways of connecting with original work, series editions, art on view, and by subscription. This is fun for me! I am hoping to delve much further into my personal study of totem animals and plant medicine, and to incorporate that spiritual path into my storytelling and work. I am a nature baby and have long felt a close kinship with plants. After learning about my own connections to Shamanism in 2015, I have wanted a deeper connection with medicine work. This may take me outside of the city- I've inexplicably been a city dweller since college!
You can expect an expanded portfolio of work around: fairy tales, the moon, interesting creatures, power animals, sweet messages, mythological creatures, adventurous children, luminaries, flowers, fairies (of course), folk crafting, and magic. i also have plans in the works already to expand my goodies in the shop. It takes time (and a budget!) but I'm looking forward to new precious objects like stickers and bags.
I am exploring further schooling and ways to progress in my art technique. Who wouldn't love that!? I am thrilled each time I'm able to offer you all something here that is a departure from my tried and true watercolor (my first love, after the 2B pencil of course), and feel excited about having a year ahead to find new ways of getting art out there.
This is also going to be a year of volunteering for me, and a year of expanding beyond my 4 small walls. Introverted and reclusive, I have been small and quiet too long. I am committed to joining some artist organizations, showing my face at meetings, and going to Creative Mornings. Yes!
Not everything is perfect. I wish my family were all in perfect health, all close on one coast. I wish I even knew which coast i wanted to live on! I wish I was beginning the year with a more stable foundation. But we have all worked damn hard to get to where we are, and I am putting into practice that lesson of using my days to the fullest. Art, like life, is messy sometimes (and thank goodness I suppose!). Art, I like to remind myself, is nothing without movement. So here we are in 2016, respectful of movement, and the fine art of living.