Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Ali's one word

It is time again to choose my "One Word" for the year. This is my third year (wow!) doing it. If you are not familiar with this year long process, read here. Different than a "resolution", it is a word that guides you for the year.

2007 was the year of "Honor" for me. I needed to honor who I really am, the good parts, the weak parts and most importantly, the creative part. We moved to FL where I made it a priority to have a creative space that honored my creative life which is vital to my happiness. I will doodle on the side of grocery list if that is all I have cos I gotta express my artistic side. Now I have a beautiful studio where people love to come and play. Nothing makes me happier. Joe has found a huge creative streak in himself as well and no longer says he is not creative. How cool is it to watch that in someone you love? Jarrett has discovered that he is really good at decoupage and creating with found objects. My sister, Steff is very creative making beautiful cards and scrapbook pages. I love to have her in my room.

I explored new mediums - painting, colored pencils (thank you, Kal Barteski), altered art (thank you, Angela), art journaling, better photography (thank you, Tara Whitney) and home dec items. I started online classes - hello, community. Love that. And learned SO much yet knew it was the tip of an enormous iceberg. I started this blog, became a blog addict and through the examples of others, started sharing my work. Sharing can be scary.

I remember a pivotal moment - I was at CKU - Orlando talking to an attendee (I was there alone and knew nobody) and mentioned Donna Downey's blog. The woman said that if Donna Downey was not famous, nobody would even look at her stuff because it was crap. Then she walked away. In my head, I was screaming at her back as she walked away - "She is enormously BRAVE to put her art, her soul, on display as encouragement for others who are too afraid to do so. You are wrong. Her art may be in its infancy stage but how exciting to watch her stretch and grow." I knew right then that I did not care what I created and if I liked it or not, I was posting it on my blog in rebellion to attitudes like that. And I did, even when it was crap. It was MY crap and next time, it would be a bit better and then better still and that is how we grow. (So I guess I owe CKU Crap Lady a thanks, huh?)

2008 was "Implement" which was just a fancy way to say DO. Take everything that I learned in 2007 and start doing it. It was time for my lab class. I started listening to the voice in my head that said, I can't do THAT. And then I set out to learn THAT. I can't paint people - faces? No Way! Only artists do that. Thanks to a class with Paulette Insall, I can paint faces. I embraced the word artist - I am an artist. I can't learn PhotoShop - too big, too hard. Hello, my favorite teacher EVER , Jessica Sprague - now I can rock it.

I went to Scrap Etc in Nashville and Creative Escape in Arizona. I took classes with Heidi Swapp, Tim Holtz (incredible) and discovered new teachers that I love (Jenni Bowlin, Kolette Hall, Janet Hopkins and others). I found new product lines that really spoke to me (Teresa Collins, Claudine Hellmuth, Danelle Johnson, and Katie Pertiet). I learned Digital Scrapbooking (Jessica Sprague) and overcame that stunned, overwhelmed fog that was oh, so familiar to me.

And now it is time to choose again. Last night Joe was reading aloud to me from Kelly Rae Roberts' book, Taking Flight about conquering artistic fear. The word came screaming into my head. Dare. I immediately pushed it away. That is not my word. Nope. Dare is a scary word. It is bold and has an agenda. It is not a soft, gentle word. Come on, I dare you. See?

So, Dare has chosen me. I did not chose it. I am going to trust that it is going to take me where I need to go.

Dare seems to have a partner - faith.


Shonna said...

Awesome post Sandi!! I loved reading about your journey! I can't wait to see what new things come from you this upcoming year! I'm sure it will be nothing but great and wonderful creativity!! You go girl!!!

Shellmo said...

I am looking forward to your wonderful & beautiful projects in 2009!