January 2021 – reflecting on 2020

Close up of magnet on Shoulder Serpent

How are we already halfway through January? Time has always seemed to flow at it’s own pace but with Covid 19 still looming over us it seems especially random. This time last year I would have still be deciding if I wanted to go full time with my art. I would have (or maybe very shortly after this date last year) signed up for the “Punk Rock Flea Market” – a very unique sort of show that included your normal craft faire stuff with car smashing and live bands. It was an un expectedly good event for me. I believe that same weekend I got accepted into what would be my largest show ever, the state fair up in Puyallup, WA. I felt like I got my sign that said go ahead, be an artist full time. So I quit my day job, excited for my overwhelming line-up of opportunities!

And then the virus struck, with lockdowns happening a mere week after my last day at my old job.

Long story short, nearly all my shows were cancelled and I even cancelled my own wedding too. 2020 was a rough year. But here we are, in a new year and with a vaccine on the way. And for all the disappointment I will say this unintentional sabbatical has had a few upswings. Without the expectation of selling things I allowed myself time to explore techniques or to make large show pieces. The improvement in the quality of my work has been quite drastic. I’ve also grown my social media presence and finally started making some online sales. I have invested heavily in myself and am curious to see what this year (and future years) bring. I will probably always wonder what last year would have been like without the virus. I’ll think wistfully of large events like state fairs, which may take a few years to fully recover from all this. But I am not going to live in the past, or whine (too much) about my lost year because it wasn’t really lost. Today I have an impressive catalogue of 54 items on Etsy. I have a better appreciation for the value of my own work, a few of those large show pieces I made last year actually sold with no shows at all. I feel focused. All this extra time to reflect of whether or not I should be a full time artist have actually strengthened my resolve. I can do this!

Look out 2021, here I come!

Shoulder Serpent

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