Today would have been my mom’s 100th birthday, and I’m thinking Spring is right around the corner (though I know the official first day isn’t until March 20th). This time of year in the northwest USA can be kind of depressing: it’s dark, usually raining, and just cold enough to not want to be outside – and it’s been this way since November. I’m ready for Spring and I’m posting in my blog for the first time since December, in its – and my mom’s – honor.
In these last few years, I’ve worked to match my ideas about what it means to Be an Artist to the realities I find at this time of my life. It’s as though, since graduate school 40 years ago, I’ve carried some precious fantasy in a secret box. I’ve been unpacking this box, examining its contents, trying them on for size, as though they were fancy clothing I’d never had the occasion to wear before. Not everything fits. I’ve reviewed ideas. Some have been thoroughly explored by other artists and now, after 40 years, do not seem fresh. I’ve been preoccupied with questions about notoriety: is my work interesting to anyone else? What comprises “success” for an artist?
As the dreams in my secret box are held up in the air and light of this time, they are undergoing some kind of organic change. My agenda and goals are evolving. I’m growing more interested in more personal projects. One of these days, I might just start taking pictures of all the people around me, or making quilts.
Telling my own story continues to be important. Tracing the trajectory of my own experience, my own heart and mind, is part of being human, of walking around with this unique brain. This is what I can offer to the world.
Meanwhile, I’ve continued to photograph nature, play with infrared and colored filters, and draw into my photographs, to add one more element that helps us see. Here is a link to my newest group of images: New Work: Winter 2016-17.
I was born when my mom was 30; today she would have been 100. Amazing!
Happy Birthday Mom!