I began this blog last year with a desire to make my journaling as an artist both manifest and public. Devoted to journaling as a teenager and young adult, I chronicled my adventures, loves and art school experiences. I continued journaling in graduate school, but once the adventure of family began, my commitment to journaling waned. Several months ago, inspired by an on-line course I'd taken with artist business coach Alyson Stanfield (http://artbizblog.com), I signed up for the 4-week Blog Triage class with Alyson and Cynthia Morris (http://originalimpulseblog.com and http://journeyjuju.com). My goal: to build a more vibrant, meaningful and engaging blog for you, the readers.Welcome!
Yesterday, class began with our first homework assignment: "Describe the people you want to visit and read your blog." Who are my readers? All of you wonderful folk who've so far signed up to follow are people with a passionate love of art making or a desire to help others, especially children, create art. In spite of that, the question caught me unawares. Today I learned the answer at an awards breakfast for Children's Miracle Network, a national organization whose efforts fund my work as an art therapist at UC Davis Children's Hospital. The room was filled with people who had one goal in common: to create meaning and miracles for children undergoing a myriad of medical challenges. When a teen stood up and told her story of battling cancer three times over, there was not a dry eye in the place. When I drove away, I realized "I want to write a blog that attracts people like you who are reading this now. People who are passionately dedicated to meaning making; whether it is making artwork that is shared in exhibits, or, introducing others to the pleasures and life-saving qualities of art making. I envision you ranging in age from 17 to 100, because art making crosses the lifespan. My personal motivation in making art is "tikkun o'lam," the Jewish spiritual practice of "repairing the world" and I'm looking for you; like minded readers from across the country and indeed from around the world. I celebrate the differences between us, but I choose to focus on the qualities that we all share in common. You, my readers, might also be avid readers of literature, ancient and modern and enjoy exploring art through the lens of mythology or psychology. You understand the beauty of finding meaning in the smallest details of life and it is my hope that, even if you are not initially comfortable blogging yourself, the desire to share experiences and engage in discussion would help to meet any challenges that arise. (I know that was true for me!) I think that sometimes the desire to express ourselves is strong enough that even we more introverted persons are moved to take a risk and put our fingers to the keyboard and speak.
Pictured above: "Blue Buddha," detail, copyright, 2009