On display at the Holiday POP! Gallery
2810 Wilderness Pl, Boulder, CO 80301, USA
Wilderness Art Studios, Space E5A
Last year I embraced a challenge, to bring creativity to the forefront of my life. A Muse Destination Workshop in Noyers-sur-Serein, France, in the summer of 2019 had reminded me with absolute clarity how crucial my art was to my mental wellbeing. As someone who suffers from depression, I had been denying myself the simplest medicine available, honoring my nature and immersing myself in creative activities.
I’m sure it started as a child with my magnificent box of 64 hues of crayons (complete with a sharpener in the back!) Art was always my favorite subject in school, and I was honored to be accepted into Virginia Commonwealth University’s prestigious art program way back in 1985. After graduation, I dabbled in commercial art until my first baby arrived, and then I turned my talents to painting childrens’ furniture, wall murals and numerous canvases gifted to loved ones. The greater the strains of “making a living” became, the less time was devoted to my art.
It was like being doused with a bucket of cold water when I realized that the overwhelming joy and fulfillment I had experienced at my workshop in France didn’t have to disappear when I returned home. It was entirely my choice how I occupied my days, and I became convinced I could responsibly manage to carve out the time needed to nurture my long-neglected creative soul. With a plan and a lot of support from my greatest advocate, my husband, Megan Gael McCarthy Art came to be on January 1, 2020.
I am so grateful for that initial year, surpassing all goals I had set for my business. But more importantly, I’m grateful for the mental and emotional stability immersing myself in my art has brought to me. Who knew how badly it would be needed as the entire world faced a crisis that could make even the most stable person depressed. Perhaps the timing for my leap into the role of professional artist was preordained, but in a year that at moments brought me to tears, all in all I’ve found peace and joy, accomplishment and success, and a far better understanding of what is not just important, but essential in my life.
My most recent milestone is the acquisition of a studio space outside of my home. I'd been chasing the light from my office, to my dining room and into my guest room, trying to maintain a separation between home and work. I had signed up on a waitlist last fall for a space in The Wilderness Art Studios, a part of Art Work Space in Boulder. A day before I was headed out of town for the first time in over a year to visit family, I received the call that there was a studio spot available. In a whirlwind I suddenly found myself with a glorious, light-filled space, surrounded by other creative artists. The idea of participating in Open Studios with this location to invite art lovers into is so inspiring, and I hope that comes to fruition.
Being part of an artist community is something I've only enjoyed during workshops I've participated in, and I can't wait to see how my work evolves in this new environment. So far 2021 looks to be improving for the world, and I intend to bring as much beauty and art into it as I can, to nurture my own soul as well as the souls of others.
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