|"Grown Ass Woman" 9" x 9" Mixed Media Canvas by Crystal Neubauer; Now available as Prints and Canvas reproduction|
On the heels of my nearly two week time hosting my friend Jan Avellana, during which we co-taught a workshop and worked collaboratively and individually to meet deadlines for other projects, I received many messages about the importance of developing creative community when living the creative life or pursuing a career in the arts.
You didn't have to tell me, but it was affirming none-the-less that to truly become my fullest artistic self, I cannot work exclusively in isolation as an artist. I am here in Chicago, Jan is there in Honolulu, but the support and encouragement we have given each other over the past 7+ years has been invaluable to each of us in the pursuit of our artistic careers.
To commemorate our time together, Jan and I created a series of collaborative works titled "Birds of a Feather", a joy to be sure!
To say I am in a time of transition in my life and career seems like the understatement of the year. If you have been following my blog, newsletters, or Facebook feed, or you know me in person, you know that my career path has been one that has unfolded in a faith-filled step by step process. One in which I take the step before me, lean in and listen until I feel led to the next. It was in this place of leaning in to listen that my husband and I decided to make our move to Chicago this past spring. A surprise to be sure, but many times over, we've felt that decision confirmed.
The details are still unfolding, decisions still need to be made about the studio, and I'm still processing where I will place my creative energies and focus for the next year, but one thing I know for sure, it will involve community. Online and face to face, the importance of living and working around like-minded people is invaluable to me. Thank you to all of you for joining me in this space.