The Wall of Love
Stunned. I felt lower than the curb.
I had just finished unpacking all my art supplies into my wonderful new studio when I learned that the city was requiring me to build a wall smack in the middle of my studio to provide an area that is where all the exciting teaching will be going on…a permanent 8’ wall. AND upgrade our septic. Yikes.
I am pretty good at rolling with the tide, letting the icky stuff in life bounce off my shoulder. Not always, but mostly. I suppose the sting came after a glorious number of roadblocks.
We all have different levels of crisis’ in our lives, and this situation is nothing compared to others around me. There is no doubt that my life is filled with blessings. But for some reason, this one hit me really hard. I suppose it was when I heard “you can’t teach until these items are taken care of”. At the time, my ears only heard “you can’t teach”. Ouch.
Was it time for me to pack it up? Is there something being pointed directly at me that I should be listening to? My go-to fight emotion wasn’t bubbling to the surface for this one.
After moving to Port Townsend nearly 2 years ago, my husband and I have been renovating a 1940’s house and had contractors here for an entire year, all while living in the house. I swear we have moved 386 times since every time we worked on a room, we had to move out and move back in again. Yes, I have a roof over our heads (although I woke up several weeks ago to water dripping from the ceiling onto the bed!). We love our house and adore walking 4 blocks to the beach where we can see the San Juan Islands and sometimes Victoria, BC. We are surrounded by wonderful neighbors - what can be more comforting than when a neighbor knocks on the front door after a big snow and ask if there is anything we need?
I often wake up in the morning with all kinds of ideas about the creative process, and head directly to my laptop to jot the ideas down. But for a time period, I was dry. Dry, dry, dry.
Thank heavens to family members who realized that I was excessively quiet and they began to draw me out of my shell. Slowly my creative spirit came back, hand in hand with my fight mode in the form of standing up for myself. YES, I want to continue teaching. I am energized at the end of the day. I am fulfilled. Nothing thrills me more than hearing a student find an AHA moment of discovery.
YES, I can pick myself up and get back to feeling intense appreciation again.
I decided to name the wall, “The Wall of Love”. Because hanging on this wall, will be art loving made…by me and my students.
The Wall of Love. That rings true.
My husband has used every ounce of energy to build this wall, and we are so blessed with neighbors Sam and David, and our dear friend Pat for their help. The structure is up, drywall is next.
And it feels good.
Stay tuned for the next phase and new photos!
I love what my wise friend has to say about Encaustic Printmaking: “Isn’t it amazing how instantaneously folks fall in love with encaustics once they see the process and results? I really believe it is because it makes instant artists out of anyone. There are the procedural rules of process to follow of course, then comes the creation and that is very free flowing and organic, with very few rules to dictate and influence the result. More importantly, every example always has a component within it that speaks to its creator; that alone becomes something they can look at with pride of having created.” AA