“Creativity takes courage.” Henri Matisse
There is a well known fact about me . . . I’m a little weird. I always have been. I live in my head, I have an imagination that never stops, I’m always making up stories – because I’m always reading stories.
Today was one of those days, when I realized just how weird I am. Because I could see myself for just a moment through the eyes of the friends who were with me. We were walking around my one friend’s home town, a completely charming, lovely, glorious little university town in Ohio. My youngest son went to school at said university many moons ago now. On this day, we were in one of my favorite art stores. It carries all kinds of art from pottery to fiber, made by local artisans, as well as wonderful supplies, and kittens in the back room during “kitten season”. For someone like me this store has it all.
Yesterday walking into the store, the woman at the counter struck me as familiar. We exchanged smiles. She greeted us and welcomed us to the store. I walked around looking at earrings and pottery contemplating what I might take home with me to remember the day with my friends. But I couldn’t get the feeling out of my mind that I knew the woman at the counter. I looked at her again. She smiled at me again – and then it hit me. I have read her blog! She makes pottery! Oh and she knits the cutest hats! So of course, being the weirdo that I am, knowing no boundary between strangers and a potential friend, I strode up to her and introduced myself and told her boldly that I thought I knew her! Oh yeah. So awkward.
And yes. I acted like a teenage girl meeting a rock star.
I told her I used to read her blog – she said she wasn’t writing it anymore – I said I thought so because I hadn’t seen a post from her in awhile – she said she was on Instagram – I said I was too – we looked for each other on Instagram (on our phones of course) and immediately started following each other.
And she was such a good sport about me fan swarming her. She even let my friend take a picture (or six) of us. AND posted them on her Instagram.
My friends were a little embarrassed. Especially my friend who grew up in the town. She is much more reserved in many ways than I am. I was still elated. Nothing could bring me down. I love meeting new people.
Then, as if meeting her wasn’t enough, when we walked back to my friend’s parent’s apartment, they had a visitor. He is a published author. He has written a book of short stories and some poetry and a book of collected essays. He was amazing. I could have talked to him all afternoon. Her parents had one of his books and I was looking through it not paying much attention to the chit chat in the room, and it hit me that I should be doing all of this: making art, writing my stories, publishing my stores, selling my art. He even asked me about my writing. It was pretty amazing. Just to talk about it.
O.K. I know this sounds a little silly, maybe. But I am a solitary artist/writer who has struggled for the past few years to make my writing and my fiber art the main focus in my life. I still work at a pretty exhausting job, which leaves me little time to even think about making art or writing. But meeting these two people, has lite some fire in me that I can’t explain.
Today is Sunday. I have dressed like I would dress if I never had to put on a sedate office outfit again, my goddess outfit if you will. We have to dress the part, yes? Today I’m going to gather my poetry and my photographs and put together a chap book. Today I’m going to make some art. Today I’m going remember who I am.
Long live art!