A Series of Somethings

I’ve recently moved abroad and started to create a new pace of life in Europe. When telling people I live in Luxembourg, I have received a range of responses from “oh, where in Virginia is that?” to “is that in Texas?” or “is that in Germany,” and “I love Switzerland.” Before moving here, I would have included myself in the same group of people who are unaware of the very small country centrally located between France, Belgium and Germany.

New to expat living and life in Europe, a friend encouraged me to create a blog documenting my often humiliating yet humorous experiences. In an effort to do just that I created, Collector of Sorts.

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All my research (and by research I mean listening to podcasts like: The Jealous Curator, Creative Pep Talk, and reading tips by Jerry Saltz in his guided essay on “How to Be an Artist With 33 Rules”) indicated creative success is rooted in being true to myself. Even Lesson #2 in Saltz’s guide is a quote by one of my favorite artists, Louise Bourgeois, “Tell your own story and you will be interesting.”

Image via  @sharon_dowell

I have always referred to myself as a “collector of sorts;” discovering and investigating is how I become familiar with new environments. So I decided to begin here, with the idea and concept of what it means to collect.

The first series of somethings -  secretly stolen spoons (and one fork)

The first series of somethings - secretly stolen spoons (and one fork)

I’ve been a long time fan of blogs such as “Things Organized Neatly,” but something i’ve realized is that collections aren’t always neat and tidy; they are more times than not messy or better yet, particular. They often start with a series of something’s. Something: secretive, silly, surprising, soulful, sorrowful, sassy, symbolic, sensitive, selfish, sensual and sometimes sinister. Like a list of words that begin with an “s", a collection is a description. Things, people, places, even felt experiences can be described by gathering and assembling a collection of sorts.

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I hope that you will follow along and (if you feel so inclined) participate by sharing what your collections describe & submit your own story of sorts.

Moleskin Drawing (West Coast)

For the past five years I have been collecting and filling moleskins with drawings. They have accompanied me in my travels overseas, across the country, to different cities, waiting rooms, teacher meetings, airports - any place that I visit long enough to capture in pen. Below is my most recent journey. 

Day 1:

Camping with Giants, 2017

Camping with Giants, 2017

This past week I took a road trip from Seattle to San Fransisco. Taking the scenic route, I traveled Highway 101 down the Oregon Coast and Highway 1 to Humboldt Redwood State Park. Above is a sketch of my campsite. 

Day 2:

Making and Unmaking, 2017

Making and Unmaking, 2017

I was mesmerized by the waves crashing against the rocky beach and slightly terrified of the height and drop off of the cliffs lining the coast by Highway 1. This was my campsite view from Westport-Union Landing Beach. 

Day 3: Too tired to draw

Day 4: 

Viewing Joan Mitchell at SFMOMA

Viewing Joan Mitchell at SFMOMA

I have always wanted to visit San Fransisco and the SFMOMA. The current exhibit Matisse / Diebenkorn was inspiring for it's curated pairings as well as its range of work, spanning periods of abstraction, figurative work and ocean park landscape series. 

HM & RD notes, 2017

HM & RD notes, 2017

Day 5: 

Juan & Megumi's green thumb window in SF

Juan & Megumi's green thumb window in SF

Slowly moving stops, starts and stutters, 2017

Slowly moving stops, starts and stutters, 2017

 

My airbnb in the Castro District of San Fransisco. My hosts, Juan and Megumi had a fantastic collection of plants filling their windows, porches and front steps.

Day 6: 

Indoor Pool at Riverside on the Deshutes, Bend, Oregon

Indoor Pool at Riverside on the Deshutes, Bend, Oregon

When your car breaks down, go for a swim, 2017

When your car breaks down, go for a swim, 2017

Arrive in Bend, Oregon. The car breaks down and moral is low. Hot tubs and indoor heated pools help. 

Day 7:

The smallest airport I've ever visited, 2017

The smallest airport I've ever visited, 2017

Change of plans, flying home instead of driving. Redmond-Bend Airport is the smallest airport I have ever visited. 

The End. For more moleskin drawings visit my sketchbook.