Getting Myself Back Together…

It has been a while… a REALLY long while. But I am back and determined to get going again with my blog and with small art creations, thoughts, lessons, projects, updates, etc. You see, since my last blog post on here since 2013 (I have been slightly better about updating my teacher blog at http://stanggallery.blogspot.com/), I became a human mommy. No longer just a rescue dog mommy. This mommy thing is amazing beyond my wildest imagination and exhausting, especially when holding down a few jobs. I let my blog slip obviously. I took on many fewer commissions and my personal productivity time table took a hit. And it was so so worth it.

Fast forward to this past summer / fall, our daughter had been sick for several months with what (thankfully) ended up being a treatable staph infection in her spine. I was exhausted mentally, physically and emotionally. I never got to be an artist that summer, but what a blessing to have been able to be there with our daughter every minute through her pain and to fight to find answers. When I found out that we had a miscarriage (something I willingly talk about now), I signed up for a workshop at Arrowmont. I figured that I might as well get around some materials that I would not otherwise be around while pregnant and at the same time take an art break geared towards sculpture and potential STEAM techniques for my classroom.

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Unfortunately the workshop took an unexpected turn towards what majority of the class participants wanted rather than what was advertised. I found myself frustrated and demoralized in this now basket-weaving workshop. Dang, I needed art therapy time so so badly and I needed to pour myself into relevant art for myself and my classroom. This festering feeling of needing to give up my personal art reached an explosive point.

On the last morning of the workshop, with an admitted tear in my eye, I randomly looked at my morning devotion app. I usually go months without looking at it. That morning, it read “To those who use well what they are given, even more will be given & they will have an abundance. But from those who do nothing, even what little they have will be taken away.” Wow. Thanks Big Guy. Sometimes I guess it takes getting to that low point and a figurative slap in the face for a change to happen.

So here I am today. A month ago we had our amazing son. The pregnancy was not an easy one and I did not get around to doing as much personal art as I planned, but I held onto that feeling from my ‘slap in the face’ tightly.

You see, our toddler daughter is SO excited about art; she IS an artist and she is so proud of that. Everything I paint she wants in her room. When I paint, she wants to paint. She wants to paint when I don’t want to paint, too. I realize now more than ever that I need to keep my personal art in my life. It would be such a let-down for Savannah if I let it go. So for her, and for our TJ, here I am. I am an artist being pulled in a million directions, but an artist nonetheless.

I even agreed to participate as a guest artist again in dk Gallery’s fabulous ‘Smile’ show, which ended up opening a week after TJ was born. I promise that I will post my work from that soon, too (most of the pieces sold!).

And here are the images that I meant to post back in January 2014. This is Savannah’s doggy art for her nursery. We have spent hours looking at and talking/giggling about these doggies. Two of them look like Tacoma and Aspen. Savannah decided to let ‘baby brother’ have her doggy art and she got new artwork from Mommy for her big girl room. Want to see the new big-girl art? That will be coming soon in a new post. Hint:  she LOVES the zoo…

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And when I was quite literally at the drawing table on what doggies to create and use just before Savannah was born…

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  • Frances Froehlke Kirby

    Wow. Not only an awesome artist and mom, but a great writer too!

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