I think I have another series in mind. For a while there, I had different images of whales kept coming into my mind. Went to a several library branches looking for books on whales to investigate. Without getting into it too much, here's a silk screen print that I put together as a study this week. Message me if you're interested in purchasing an edition.
"Mom, there is no such things as a starving artist these days."
I had many ideas and plans swimming in my head during the whirlwind preparation for a move to Portland. It was a whirlwind, because it all happened very fast. As if it were a fate, as soon as I made up my mind to move, things started lining up and working themselves out — the apartment, the money, a good friend who could make the time to help out (In the middle of the holiday season with some family tragedy of her own to deal with! A truly good friend indeed!) — all in a matter of one month.
What am i going to do? What am I going to do in Portland? I kept asking myself. After the consecutive big losses in the past three years, I needed a new beginning, a clean slate. No, after the undoing of the immigration that left me stranded in a deep psychological hole for many years, it was important for me to finally gain a clear sense of command over my life. Live this thing the way I want. Or maybe it's the mid-life crisis. There, I said it. It's such a strange word "mid-life." Just not used to it.
Whatever it was, added to that was the endless summers in California — the one-note-climate that seemed to have dried up my spirit the way it has dried up the green hills to brown. I was done with them. I had been done for a long time, actually.
I'm going to do art. I'm going to paint. I'm going to make things with my own hands and sell them. No mom, there is no such thing as a starving artist these days. We have the internet. We can promote ourselves, sell our arts on the world wide web. If Van Gogh had the access to the internet and was a blogger like many artists are these days, his website would literally glow from the plethora of golden images from Arles in the gorgeous Mediterranean light, his readers would visit obsessively to find out what would finally happen between him and Gauguin, and his post about the mutilated ear would definitely go viral. The world would flock to his door to see his work. His paintings from his online shop would be selling out faster than he can post a new piece. He would not die an untimely tragic death in a bitter and lonely psychological turmoil, broke and starving.
So went my thoughts and my argument as my poor mom couldn't let go of her deep worries for me or just couldn't let go of me — the first in the family to leave California since we moved from Seoul.
Well, I'm here in Portland, I've been here for almost three months and I have to admit, this is a daunting task. To make the matter worse, my bread and butter client company is particularly slow this year in coming out of the lull from the winter season. I'm not starving yet, but I'm beginning to wonder about my bold statement. Makes me laugh.
It is difficult, because I have to handle everything on my own. I really wish I had an assistant, a coworker or a business partner, or just somebody to call over to my desk and ask something as simple as if they thought the logo on my layout was too small. I love and enjoy losing the track of time in creative tasks, but that comes with a high cost of later logging many hours into the night to catch up on logistics of running my humble business. I wonder if Van Gogh would have been any good at administrative stuff. Am I boring you with this? Are you still with me?
It took a while for me to get back to blogging, didn't it? Thanks for keep coming back. I'd look at the unchanged daily stats for my blog and cringe for guilt. I should be able to log more regularly from here on out. I'm also working on my ecommerce site that will function independently of etsy, which is one of the reasons why my blog took so long to reset. A lot of load to pull here. And I'm just one person, though I'm hopeful that it will change soon.
On a random note, I'm also trying to rearrange my schedule so I can fit in some group running — Portland is a runners' city.
Do you remember that U2 song? How does it go? "Sunrise like a nosebleed, Your head hurts and you can't breathe, You've been tryin' to throw your arms around the world. How far you gonna go? Before you lose your way back home, You've been tryin' to throw your arms around the world." I feel like that these days. From about five in the morning until well past midnight.
I'm doing my utmost best. I go through many ups and downs through out a week, but here's the thing about trying to build your life on your own terms with your two hands: I wake up grateful and go to bed with a big smile on my face. I hope the tides will turn soon. In other words, I hope I don't starve. Haha!
If you've been using WordPress Reader to get to my blog, please take this time to bookmark nomadicles.com. My new blog site will be launching soon, and I wasn't able to extract all my WordPress followers' info for a reminder email.
I started blogging about three years ago, mainly because my sister kept pushing me to, but I had no real intention other than just to see where it goes. I look back at these pages and realize that I documented some of the biggest events of my life—losses, accomplishments and transitions. Well, I guess there were small, incidental posts too, like about my tortoise-running career, TV stuff, movie stuff, hockey stuff, etc.
I will continue to do the same on the new platform, but with a greater focus on my art and my journey of finding a new life in a new city.
Portland is beautiful. I didn't know I needed to see this much textures, lines, colors and silhouettes on a daily basis. It may sound funny, but it's a soul-nourishing experience to be here. I'm so glad that I moved during the winter. I know that there is so much more to explore, and many beautiful events will unfold with the change of seasons.
It's exciting and special to feel like a native in a foreign city. Join me as I begin my unexpected journey into the second half of this thing called life.
Portland freeways in downtown area are layers of overpasses that often put you above the incomprehensible Willamette River and make you say out loud as if someone is in the passenger seat, "Really? This is the FIVE Freeway?"
Please bare with me as I make some transitions both physically and online in the following weeks. I have so much to share and so much that I only want to keep to myself.
These days I feel like I'm existing in a perfect dichotomy of isolation and happiness, of the unknown future that I already know, of the discovery of a city that is actually the confirmation of your own faith. The visual of tall Oregon firs wrapped in looming fogs seems to say, "You just wait and see."
As of now, I am happy to be here, and that's all I care to know.
Hello. It's been a while. I've been completely dazed for the past one week and perpetually find myself yawning even after 10 hours of sleep and double shots of espresso. I have a tendency to overestimate my abilities and end up paying the bitter price for it. I am kind of done expecting myself to be a company of one that wears multiple hats – the topic that I need to carefully reflect upon. No one is an island, but I often require of myself to be, and that ain't good. Really, Joy, who do you think you are... But yay! Holiday orders are complete, and I am in another city, in another state. I pulled off an out-of-state move in the midst of the busiest time for my shop. There will be changes made to this site. If you are a regular reader, there is nothing you have to do about it. You will, nonetheless, receive an email or two from me if you ever clicked on that "Follow" button. I promise not to annoy you with spammy emails in your inbox, but you will receive a few in the next month or two, just so that I can remind others who signed up who may not come here as often as you.
My Wacom pen died last week in the middle of filling Christmas orders. I'm not techie at all, but the years of working with the Wacom tablet left me with some insights as to how to bypass such troubles at least for a little while, so I got by. I am currently on a new Wacom tablet, but the installation process was a pain, because my Mac is very old, and I ran out of tricks to keep it relevant in the upgrade-happy computer world.
So, a big portion of my hard earnings may end up getting swallowed up by a purchase of a new computer... Or a car... Or both. My mechanic who's always been happy to work on my car must have felt sorry for me as he was listing off the things that I need to do for my car in the months to come. He told me to get a new car – not a Swedish one this time, how about a Japanese car. Reliable and doesn't cost an arm and a leg to maintain.
How about a Subaru, he said. I love Subarus, but my friends say they are "lesbarus." I don't care, I said and then they challenge me, but what if you get hit on by lesbian ladies constantly? Made me think for a second, but I found this video on the Subaru site, and all doubts and hesitations went out the window. As for from where the money will come, I know not yet, but my next car will most likely be something that allows me to do what you're about to see. Enjoy (pay attention to the mighty Siberians at 0:18 and 0:58).