Jan 1st, 2014 was fantastic. I wasn't even slightly hung over, I was stationed on a fairly remote lift surrounded by serene, deep, snow and I had my sketchbook. I did have a little bit of a heart-ache hangover from the previous months, and like so many heart aches in the history of culture, it was propelling me forward into self discovery.
The result of this self searching was a realization that I feel the best, my best, when I am actively making art. That it is the thing that gives my life and me meaning despite any external conflicts. Art is my passion, though it is also my calm. It is my struggle and it is my success; it is my hope and yes, sometimes my despair. Early in 2014, the wheels in my mind were set in motion, and creating my life around the ability to pursue an artistic career and education on a day to day basis were set in motion.
I used my remaining hours as a lift operator to draw, to dream and to talk to inspiring and inspired coworkers. By the spring time, I moved to the amazing community of Livingston MT, into a small apartment with an extra room specifically for my studio. Into the summer, I established K Potter Fine Art llc, and found a niche in the Pet Portrait market. I was offered a job at Neptune's Brewery, a place that allowed me to connect with the Livingston community in a way I would have otherwise missed.
The summer flew by in a whirlwind of sun, friends, music and good drinks. As the fall settled in, I showed a couple paintings in a group show at Planet Bronze, I went on a quick and last minute vacation rafting down the first half of the Grand Canyon and I plugged away at more Pet portraits. In mid October, looking ahead at the long winter months, I adopted a dog, Huckleberry, who has made my many isolated artist hours feel a little less lonely and makes me smile/laugh on a daily.
As winter rolled in, Pet Portrait orders piled up in anticipation for Christmas, and a new, painting based gig was offered to me. With gratitude, I exited Neptune's (though you can still find me there drinkin a beer!) and in early December became, officially, a full time artist. Now, I feel, I can really pursue learning and bettering my skills. This is a perfect time in an art career- total freedom ;).
This year has been so full and so amazing. It has, of course, had its struggles, its fears, its hangovers. I have been given such amazing support in the pursuit of my artistic dreams that even I, at times, cannot believe I am so lucky to have these people in my life. I have learned more about trusting and loving myself in whatever form I appear. But most importantly, I have learned about the power to truly follow your dreams and carve your own path.
Who knows what 2015 will bring. Life is totally unpredictable. But I know there will be times to celebrate, new people will enter my life and through everything, I look forward to making more art.