Sunday, January 2, 2011

Looking back, looking forward

Good-bye, 2010!

As one of those people who tends to forge ahead and forget to look back and appreciate what I’ve accomplished, I want to make sure and take note of what a wonderful year 2010 was.

The most important thing about 2010 was that I painted and painted and painted. I learned a lot technically and gained more range of expression, particularly through exploration of color and format. I also came to a greater understanding of what it means to develop a strong statement through a cohesive body of work.

I am proud and grateful to have sold six paintings this year.

I am also thrilled to have exhibited my work in four shows during 2010. In particular, three of my works were chosen for exhibit at the U.S. Embassy in Oman. Also, I was in a two-person show at the Narrows Center for the Arts in Fall River, MA (image above is from this event); a six-person show at Bristol Community College in Fall River; and a five-person show at Jules Place in Boston.

I had a chance for self-reflection this year after some not-so-rewarding events of 2010. I thought I had been hired for a three-painting commission project, then found out that the collectors had changed their minds. This made me question my interest in doing commissions at all, which turned out to be a learning experience in what I am and am not willing to do as an artist.

I also was turned down for a number of the grants and shows I applied for. After 14 years as a professional artist, those rejection letters still sting! But as artist friends are quick to remind me, you have to “get back on the horse” and keep applying for these opportunities, or you’ll never secure them.

As far as my “day job,” teaching, I believe that I accomplished a lot this year. I taught 5 graduate-level professional development courses for art teachers, 3 adult education courses, 5 courses to high-school students, and 3 college courses. All of these classes gave me the opportunity to share the knowledge I’ve gleaned in my many years of painting, as well as allowed me to pay the bills! I am truly thankful to have a job I love, one that grows with me as I grow. After many years of hating what I did for a living (mostly secretarial work), I don’t take this gift lightly.

Now I can charge ahead! I have quite a number of “irons in the fire” for possible shows and sales in 2011. I am excited at the prospect of seeing them come to fruition.

This seems like a good time to thank the readers of my blog! I have received so many supportive comments, this year and in the nearly 4 years I have been blogging, from those who take the time to read my writing. I truly appreciate your attention and feedback. I also thank the folks who link my blog on their blog or website. It certainly brings me more readers, and that’s a good thing!

Here’s wishing you a very HAPPY 2011! May it bring all you are hoping for.


Martha Marshall said...

You have a list of great accomplishments, Catherine! In the scheme of things, the little disappointments tend to fade into the background.

I wish you continued success in the new year.

Catherine Carter said...

Thank you, Martha. Sometimes my brain keeps replaying what didn't work, so I try very very hard to appreciate what did.

Much success to you, too, and thank you for writing your blog. It is one of my favorites, that I check every day.

Stephanie Hoff Clayton said...

Well done in 2010, Catherine! Your accomplishments are many, and your gratitude shows.
Here's to a fruitful 2011!

Catherine Carter said...

Thank you, Stephanie! I wish you a most fruitful 2011 as well!