Originally posted on March 26, 2017 on the beta version of my website.
After a long and dreary winter, spring has finally begun to show itself here in Düsseldorf. The sun is shining (for the moment), and the flowers are blooming. It's so refreshing! I feel personally rejuvenated when I experience nature and see all of the bulbs sprouting from the green grass, or the tree branches bursting with pink blossoms. The colors remind me of my art, in a way. The blue sky, the pink petals, the white fluffy clouds. I am starting to feel energized after a few weeks of creative slump. Even when I'm not actively making art, it is always in my head. I'm always thinking about how to try a new painting technique, which colors I should experiment with next, and what actions I can take to move me one step closer to my goal of working as a professional artist.
I took one of those steps today by hosting the first-ever Düsseldorf Artists Group meeting. This is a group that I started with the intention of connecting with like-minded creative people who also have some career ambition in an art field. I made some snacks, set up some chairs, and hoped for the best. After the initial awkward hellos and introductions, we ended up having some genuinely nice conversations about our art, creative goals, struggles, and inspirations. There were six of us with a wide range of art-making practices, such as landscape painting, anime drawing, video art, watercolor painting, and my abstract painting. One guy is more of a musician than a visual artist, but what's really interesting is that he was one of the creators of Skype! Some of his projects sound absolutely amazing, like his current project related to designing smart cars for the future. There was a range of ages and nationalities among the members who came today. My impression is that there are a few group members who are quite motivated to keep the group alive and active. I'll set up another event for next month, and see where this takes me.
On an unrelated note, the past two weeks have been crazy for me, trying to balance my regular life and responsibilities (like teaching my students) with planning a wedding from a different continent in a very short time-frame. It's not as simple as you would think! The first week, I was obsessed with finding possible venues for the wedding on AirBnB, VRBO, and random bed and breakfast websites. I was searching for a place that could provide me with the experience that I envision: renting a whole property for a casual and small party, outside near a lake or the ocean, with a beautiful property to enjoy as our family's accommodation for a 4-day weekend of celebrating. I think that has been accomplished, so the next obsession I have moved on to is online wedding dress shopping. I know it's probably better to buy one in person, but I can't stop myself from searching through dozens and dozens of online shops. They are quite expensive, so I'm getting creative with my strategies. One way or another, I'll hopefully be wearing something that makes me feel amazing.
In other exciting news: In just two short weeks, I'll be packing my bags for Southern France for my first art retreat! I've never done an art retreat before, but I think it will be similar to other classes I've taken. Artists will be coming together from various places to work in one space, share ideas, and enjoy the creative energy from one another. Sounds like my idea of a good time... and the bonus of it being in Southern France during my spring break isn't so terrible, either.
If you are reading this, thank you very much for visiting my website and having an interest in my art! There will be many more photos coming soon of my paintings that I'm finishing up here in my home studio, and also paintings that I will be making at my retreat.