You can probably relate: this year consisted of a lot of ~inwardness.~ We’ve been reflecting on our pasts, what we want our futures to look like, who we really are, how we want to be, and what truly matters to us beneath all the noise of life. What I’ve seen, too, is it’s become so important to celebrate our individuality, unique experiences, and expression. It’s a hopeful time.
For me, this year looked like an emergence, or rather resurgence, of my belief in my ability to create. I drew. I painted. I sewed things. Tested my digital illustration skills. Finally carved my way into the world of block printing. I cooked more. Took photos. I even brought my guitar out for a time. (Heck, I painted a mural in downtown Tallahassee!)
And, of course, I got more curious about ceramics.
I see all of these as ways I chose to honor and love a side of myself I was fearful of being seen, but so desperately needed to express and share.
It felt like the first time in a while I was uninhibited. No one was watching me. There were no specifications to meet. I was determined to push past making “meh” so that I could arrive into the sheer pleasure of creating. I was seeking passion; I wanted to see myself beyond what I thought people expected of me or the limitations I put on myself.
I came back to pottery before social distancing and quarantine began. It was early January, and I decided to take a beginner wheel-throwing class. I was not a true, true beginner, but close to it. And what’s so crazy to me now, as I reflect on this year, is that 8 months after that night – I started selling my pieces. My cousin Jodie asked me to be part of her new project Repose Home. I launched my own online shop. And earlier this month, I participated in my first ever market sale. I got to meet some of you all, create new relationships, and feel the immediate joy of someone finding their piece – sharing the magic of art built with my hands.
When I walked into Tally Clay Arts at the beginning of 2020, I didn’t know I’d have East Blue Studio. I didn’t know I’d be creating and designing my ceramic forms the way I am. My wheel-throwing capabilities have improved. I feel confident I can make anything if I put my mind to it – as long as I keep learning and trying, persevering. I’m gliding into 2021 feeling optimistic about what more there is in store for East Blue – optimism paired with uncertainty, nervousness, and expectations. That’s normal, though, right?
I am extremely grateful for this year and the space I was afforded to share East Blue Studio with you. It was a brighter year with you all in it.
I hope you take some time to reflect on what you have done for yourself in this weird year. There is nothing too small for your acknowledgement or praise. Thank you for being here to celebrate mine. Looking forward to many more moments doing this thing. All love!