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On October 11, 2019 in Estevan - at the perfect little gallery called Art Concepts - one of my life-long dreams become a reality. After so many months of working hard, planning, somewhat stressing - the big night has come and gone. I cannot stop replaying the highlights in my memory... HOW PRECIOUS were the moments when my parents, siblings, and family took it all in. There were lots of tears, hugs and even prayers. I have always dreamed of what it would be like to have a body of work set up in a gallery - and this experience did NOT disappoint. It was surreal. The setting just elevated the work and made each piece shine.
As the night was closing in, I started to have anxiety about my only job left - THE SPEECH. The artist talk. See, I've attended only a handful of art receptions, and I was so inspired at each one - I loved to hear the professionalism and heart come from the artist. As it is with everything in my work... I wanted to deliver my absolute best.
I actually enjoy public speaking - but I knew this time it was going to be different. I've never given a speech that was so personal, so zoomed in on ME. Being a perfectionist, I wanted to plot out and say everything in the most clear and profound way... yet in the moment, I felt like I'd lost all that planned-out control. I was so overwhelmed, even though I had nothing but love and support in the room.
During the day, leading up to the event, I had so many people sending me messages of encouragement. "You have nothing to be nervous about! Your work speaks for itself! Just enjoy the time."
I am so thankful for those little notes. I'm picturing what it would be like running in a marathon - when the runner has a few people on the sidelines near the end to cheer them on. The cheers are short - they are small bursts of words that seem obvious - as though they would say "good job, keep going!" even if you are losing. But they lift your spirit, and then your legs, for those few more needed strides.
It just goes to show the power of our words. (Now that doesn't make a speech sound easier, does it??) But honestly - the power of small encouragements shouldn't be underestimated. Humbly again I say, thank you. Thank you to my readers, my comment-ers, sharers, likers, of course my customers... all of you.
I realized I should just let myself relax. I told myself... "I don't owe anyone anything. I'm just going to enjoy myself." Of course I laid awake in bed afterwards and faulted myself for everything I had meant to say but didn't. I'm a work in progress.
Yes, it was one of those moments that might define a new chapter. But I rest and remind myself that I did not get to this milestone on my own. I will own my mistakes and learn from them... I will own that I worked hard too - but I have chosen not to own the outcomes after that. I believe God has a plan for my life and my work, and so if I just show up with my hands open - I know I've put it all in the best place possible. What a huge burden lifts off of me when I choose to be satisfied with any outcome! And this is one of the best things about art. It feels like it's all about impressing people, but in reality, it's not about them at all.
Now with that little behind-the-scenes... I decided I would share the video taken that night. It might be full of holes and room for improvement in my eyes, but if I'm going to be an artist I should probably get acquainted with letting things show. So there you have it.
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