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New Routines

What brought me here today:

One of the things that there is just no way of getting around is that the move to Delaware has turned my regular work schedule inside out and upside down. All of the routines that I had when living and working in Finland are gone. POOF! New routines for work have to be created. Establishing those new routines is going to take some time and planning.

During the two weeks leading up to the actual move, and then the (I had to look and count) month since we’ve moved into our new apartment, my daily schedule has just been all over the place. I find it incredibly disorienting both mentally and physically. Presently, I’m only set-up to work on my computer. And with social media platforms I use to promote my artwork. I’ve not been able to create any kind of artwork yet.

To begin reestablishing my work routines, I’m starting with my daily journal and the re-opening of my online shop.

Daily journal:

A big part of how I stay organized is my daily journal. I’ve written about it before here. The current daily journal that I’m using will be finished at the end of July. Prior to moving, I found a larger format bullet journal at Flying Tiger. I’ve never used a bullet journal before because I found them too small for my personal liking. I decided to give the larger format bullet journal a try.

I was so pleased with the larger format bullet journal that I purchased a second one. That may sound odd to some. My daily journal has become such an integral part of how I work, plan, organize, and record the track of my small business. I wanted to have an extra on hand so there wouldn’t be an scrambling to find a new daily journal.

I begin my work day with my daily journal. There are specific tasks that I have noted for each day, as well as specific days. Checking things off on my lists of regular tasks helps me get into the groove of my work day. Right now, all of the work that I’m doing is centered around what I can do on computer. Writing blog posts, taking photos, doing research, and creating Go Marielle posts are what I’m currently set-up to accomplish right now.

Online shop:

I re-opened my online shop just a few days ago on the 19th of July. Now that we’re living in the US again, I’ve had to update the shipping for all items in my shop. This isn’t easy, whether your working in Finnish or English. It’s a lot of incredibly un-fun monotonous computer entry-type work. Point. Click. Find. Change. Save. Repeat ad nauseam.

For any customers within North America, shipping will cost less. My European customers will be paying a little more. I’m researching boxes for shipping my artwork, a postal scale, and how to print my own shipping labels to streamline my entire shipping process too. I will start with US domestic shipping first. Then add North America, Europe and the rest of the world.

This whole process may take some time. Your patience is greatly appreciated! As always, if you have any questions about an item(s) in my shop, shipping, etc., please contact me through my website Contact form. I’m still in the process of deciding what pieces I will return to my shop. There’s also a lot of planning going on for what new pieces I want to create for the shop in the upcoming weeks.

So, now what?

Working without a proper desk, chair, and lamp can be severely limiting. At the time I’m writing this post, some of the new equipment, furniture and other items have been purchased, or are in the process of being delivered. There seems to be quite a few of our new neighbors that have deliveries from all kinds of different stores. My hopes are that our shipments will go smoothly too. Until then, I will just be patient, and do what work I can, with the set-up I currently have.

Thank you for reading, and I’ll see you again next Friday.

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Shop Open!

Open shop!

This is just a short post announcing that my online shop is once again open! There are presently a limited items currently available for purchase. I’m still making decisions regarding what items will be returning to the shop, and which items will be permanently removed.

Currently, I am only able to ship purchased items domestically within the United States. During the next week, I will be adding more shipping options so that I may ship internationally again as soon as possible!

All of the downloadable patterns I have listed are available for purchase from my shop. You can look through the online patterns here.

New items:

I’m slowly getting my new studio organized so that I can begin creating all the new artwork I’ve been wanting to start. The new items will begin appearing in the shop in the next few weeks. To see what I’m working on, make sure that you’re following me on Instagram @Katie_Kinsman_Artist and on Twitter @KatieKinsmanArt.

If you have any questions, please contact me here!

Thank you for visiting my website!

 

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Last Art Workshop and More Dolls

What brought me here today:

I taught my final art workshop before me we move. It went extremely well, even though I say it myself. The students enjoyed themselves. They participated a lot in the presentation conversation. And they made some incredible artwork. I don’t think I could have asked for anything more.

Well, I did ask for a little more. I asked if they would like some donated art materials. The answer was an enthusiastic “JOO!” I left my wheeled suitcase that I used for art workshop tool and material traveling, fully packed with materials and supplies. One of the directors will also be dropping by our apartment to pick up the rest of the art-related things I’m donating. YAY!

One of the reasons this makes me happy is that I know that the supplies and materials I donate will be used by young people to make art. And through making that art, they will learn more about themselves and who they want to be in the future. Win-win-win!

Teaching art:

I honestly did not think I would enjoy teaching students older than elementary school aged. Teaching art workshops here has made me change my mind completely. Putting my finger on what changed my mind has proved difficult. But I think it has something to do with working with people who have a bit more life experience, and their own creative wants, needs, and goals.

Small children are fun to teach because in many cases, I was introducing them to an art supply, tool, material, or technique that was a completely new experience for them. Getting to see them learn and grow is amazingly gratifying as an art teacher. It’s as if you’re in the instant in which a child (perhaps) forms a long-term memory. And in a way, become a small part in their unique life story.

Will I teach in the future?

I hope to teach art workshops once we’ve become more settled in the new apartment, and surrounding city. I’ve already begun looking for community programs that an art teacher like myself might work. Teaching art workshops would allow me to continue teaching, while at the same time continue to create my own artwork. And grown my art business.

More moving stuff!

A few days ago, I was looking for a specific doll that I had made several years ago. I looked everywhere in our apartment, and found nothing. While expressing my exasperation, my husband said, “Have you checked the storage unit downstairs?” I looked at him like he was nuts. I got the keys and tromped downstairs to the storage unit. Guess what? There were four large-ish boxes of dolls.

Needless to say, there was quite a lot of cursing done as I carted the boxes upstairs. GAH! When did I create so many dolls!? Long story longer, I spent part of yesterday evening going through every single doll and sorting them into different categories. Keep, Give-Away, and Donate.

I’ve not touched the dolls again today. I was too busy. I’ll go through the piles again, to make sure that they’re going to the best place for them. My husband, many weeks ago made the suggestion that I use a lot of small dolls as packing for the larger, paper mâché dolls that I’m shipping through the post.

Thank you for reading, and I’ll see you again on Friday.

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Tick Tock Tick

What has brought me here today:

Doo doo doo doo!

This is getting close to the end of our time here. The move will be completed before the end of this month! The second hand place is scheduled to come to make a pick up of what we aren’t taking with us. A wonderful picnic with our close friends has been planned for this weekend. The last of my shop orders will be sent this coming Monday. My tools, materials, and large finished pieces of art are getting packed up to be sent on ahead of us as well.

It’s getting a little messy and rather nutty around here! There is so much going on. My husband has said that he feels as though he’s floating around in a weird place. Existing in several different places all at once. This is understandable. As midsummer approaches, 21:00 feels more like 16:00. The only reminder that it’s late is the fact that we’re tired!

Blog Posting:

I’m going to post my last regular, biweekly blog post here on 18 June. There is just so much going on with the move that I don’t think that I will be able to write anything that makes much sense at all! If I do post, it will be sporadic. I will resume my regular biweekly blog posts by Tuesday, 6 July 2021.

This gives me some time to get settled into the new living space. As well as getting my studio set up and running again. My online shop will re-open on 19 July 2021. It’s at this time that I will be able to send out orders. Just writing that makes my head swim a bit! I have so, so, so many things to do before then. At the same time, it seems so, so, so far away in the future!

And now for something you’ll really like:

We have found a new place to live and work! The lease has been signed and we will get the keys the day after we land. My husband and I are incredibly grateful to have found this specific location in which to rent. It’s exactly what we have been searching so hard for over the last few months.

We had become a bit disheartened. Most of the rental properties that we looked at were just not what we were looking for. We’re both creative people. Living in a wall-to-wall carpeted beige box just made us so sad. Those types of rentals are perfectly okay. They just aren’t to my personal taste.

The new residence has so much character and ready access to public transit. Multiple green parks are within an amazingly short walk too! I’ll have a small studio space with a door that closes so I won’t disturb my husband so much while working. There’s also a laundry on site. A small grocery, and multiple restaurants, coffee shops and a library are all within walking and bus distance. I love not having to worry and fret about a car!

So, what now?

Well, we’re down to the wire. Packing is still on-going. I’m sending out the last of the orders from my online shop on 15 June 2021. Today is actually a ‘chill out day’ for my husband, He has been doing huge, immense, Godzilla-sized work on our end getting the new place secured, as well as all of the budgeting for our expenses.

Money always makes me nervous. I start to freeze-up mentally and emotionally. He loves accounting and budgets and the like. I’m in constant awe of his saving and budgeting abilities! This move is going as smoothly as it is due in great part to his hard work. You can read his work here.

Thank you for reading, and I’ll see you again next Friday.

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Fixing, Sorting and Giving Away

Dental procedure update:

My root canal is finished. I will need a crown by the end of the year. That will kind of suck. But, at least the hardest and most uncomfortable part of the entire process is over with. The process in the chair with all the drilling and poking about with needles and whatnot, didn’t hurt. Most of the time it was merely uncomfortable. Now I’m not having any pain at all in that tooth. And that’s great!

As an American, I kept putting off the trip to the dentist because I was terrified that it would cost thousands and thousands of euros. I can’t say that this dental procedure was cheap. It was far less expensive than I had feared. And the dentist, assistant, and staff at both dental clinics that I was treated at were knowledgable, professional, and extremely considerate people.

I do still need to have a crown. That will be more expensive. I’m not really looking forward to it either. I have until the end of the year to have the crown done. This gives me some time to save (hopefully) enough money to have this last bit of dentistry completed.

Online shop update:

My online shop will be closing on 12 June. I have no plans for reducing any of the prices of the artwork listed in the shop. Many of the pieces have already had their prices lowered a month or so back. Offering discounts or attempting to conduct a sale isn’t something that I have the time to do at present.

To be completely honest, I need all the money that I can make from the sale of my artwork in my online shop for the move. I write this not as some sort of passive-aggressive guilt-trip aimed at potential customers. I’m merely being upfront and stating a clear fact of my current situation. So if you’re waiting to buy my artwork in the hopes of it having the prices reduced, I’m sorry.

Organizational updates:

The organization is basically me picking up an art supply, material, or some other item and saying to myself, “Gift for ____? Donate to _____? Trash? Recycling? and Save for ____?” I can assure you, it’s not the most exciting process. I do try to make the gifting and donating of items as easy as possible for the person who is taking ownership of the items. Reusable grocery bags are one of my best friends right now!

Packing up my artwork:

Some of my larger, paper mâché pieces are being taken apart and boxed up so that they can be sent through the mail to myself. Many of my largest pieces either come apart, or I can carefully disarticulate them for easier packing and shipping. Many of the smaller dolls will actually be used in lieu of bubble wrap or tissue paper to keep the paper mâché from getting too bashed around in transit.

Packing up other stuff:

Moving to another residence, and all the packing and donating does not really make for riveting blog reading. Of this, there is no doubt. It’s not a super fun process to go through either. There are times in which I’m actually kind of having fun sorting things and getting ready to move. Then there are other times in which I hide behind my computer writing boring blog posts in an attempt to put off going back to the sorting, planning, and organizing.

So…yeah. Hmm. I guess I need to wrap up this post and get back to breaking down my desk materials storage. Super fun times.

Thanks for reading, and I will see you again next Friday!

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Thoughts and Objects

What brought me here today:

My husband and I are getting closer to the big move. I must admit, I’m finding it harder and harder to not create artwork for the majority of each day. Making art is part of every day. I wake up. Eat breakfast. Sit down at my work table and start working. Most of what I’ve been accomplishing is a lot of list making. This isn’t a bad thing. I just need to actually start doing the things on the lists!

My time has been occupied with two things: sorting my art supplies and creating the layouts for my next day journal. It’s a lot of putting items, thoughts, plans and lists into the correct places.

New day journal(s):

I have come to depend on my day journal to keep me on track over the past almost two years. As an elementary at teacher, I kept a lesson planner, daily class notes and a daily journal. All three of these helped to keep me focused as I planned my professional life as an art teacher and as an artist.

A few weeks ago, my husband pointed out that our local Flying Tiger had some larger bullet journals. They were closer in size to my current day journal (17.5 x 25 cm). I liked the larger size and bought it. I think it was around 4-5€ ($4.88-$6.10). My current journal will be done at the end of August. My plan was to prepare the large bullet journal from September to December 2021.

It took me almost an entire day to add the layout to the new bullet journal. My husband came over at one point to see what I was working on and seemed surprised by all the work I was doing. He confessed to being a little less picky about the layouts in his own bullet journals. It must be the graphic designer in me. I can’t leave the pages un-designed.

This seems excessively anal-retentive:

It actually took me almost two complete days to finish getting the new day journal ready. Everything on each page is colour coded. Two separate stencils were used to highlight the headers for each section on each individual page. The dates and days of the week were all written in by hand.  Pages were added at the front and end of each month for projects that I want to work on. Each month has a tab. They’re secured with glue and clear packing tape.

Yes. This seems excessively anal-retentive for something as utilitarian as a daily work journal. Except, it’s really not. This day journal is going to be with me every day. I want it to be something that I will want to use. Finishing the layouts on all the pages will make it an attractive tool to use. The finished, designed layouts and personalization will make it more likely that I will want to use my day journal every day.

Like what kinds of bad things? Well, not keeping track of my marketing. Losing track of long-term project. Not being able to find passwords or contact information. There’s also not knowing what I’m creating, or keeping track of how long it takes to create. I also wouldn’t be able to keep track of what I’m posting online either. Keeping a record my artwork sales and shipping wouldn’t be done either. My day journal is the instruction manual for my small business.

Dividing up art supplies:

Giving away art supplies is proving easier than figuring out exactly which art supplies I need to take with me. There are art supplies that I brought with me from the US that I didn’t use much. And while creating artwork in Finland, I’ve become dependent upon some supplies that I know will be difficult to obtain after the move. I’ll figure out how to do without some supplies. And find replacements for others.

My sorting method is extremely simple. I’m sorting the tools, supplies and materials that I’m not taking with me into two categories: donating to an arts organization and bags of different items for specific people. I also have my carefully curated bags of recyclable materials. Those are already sorted and will just be placed into the appropriate recycling bins.

Strange bits and bobs:

I do have some materials that resist being donated or given away. My rather large button collection is one example. It goes without saying that the vintage and antique buttons will come with me. But some of the buttons are weird ones that I’ve been collecting, with the intent of doing something specific with them. Donating them to an arts organization will probably be the final decision.

Object ownership:

When my husband and I moved to Finland, we downsized dramatically. We had been reducing the number of items that we’d been obtaining prior to moving. At first, it felt strange to not own so much ‘stuff’. I’m an artist and having a lot of stuff seems to be part of the job description.

What I learned after moving here is that I don’t necessarily need as many things to make art. It  became more important to have the right materials and a quality of tools that would allow me to create the artwork I wanted to. Everything else that I have can be re-homed, recycled and donated to the right arts organizations.

So what now?

I go back to sorting for one! My husband saw that Flying Tiger had a few of the larger bullet journals that I liked and bought me another one. This means I have another day journal to prep for 2022!

 

Thank you for reading, and I will see you again next Tuesday!

 

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In Between Again

What brought me here today:

I’ve finished two dolls that I’ve been working on for the past week. Honey and Bizzy are now both available in the shop. These two dolls are the last of the major pieces that I will be creating in my current work space. Creating is something that I do daily, as a means of therapy. So I cannot imagine completely stopping while preparing for the move that is coming next month.

I’m still trying to figure out what I will work on while completely taking apart my work space. Creating artwork while dismantling my work space seems like a precarious thing to attempt. I can’t quite remember if I worked in my studio up until the last few days before we departed Albuquerque or not. I remember that it was the last room that we dismantled though.

Creating art until…

I have a short list started for what I need to accomplish in taking apart my work space. The most important tools, materials and supplies will be set aside first. Those will be the things that are required so that I can create the artwork that I’m currently creating. Other tools, supplies and materials can be sorted and figured out from that point.

Sometimes, I wish that my needle work and sewing was more two-dimensional. That way, I could transport the tools, materials and supplies, as well as the artwork in progress more easily. While I can appreciate that kind of needle work, I need to work in three dimensions.

I’ve contemplated cutting out dolls and simply having them ready to assemble. But I’m not sure. I’m going to create a few new sketchbooks so that I have ample space to write and sketch ideas for pieces that I may not be able to create for a month or so. Whatever I end up doing, you’ll be sure that I will be writing about it here.

Diverted:

Go Marielle will probably be getting more of my creative attentions while we are actually nearer the end of preparing for the move. A lot of what I do with Marielle is done on the computer. As long as I have my laptop, camera and an internet connection, I can create and post stories for Go Marielle. Hopefully these new stories will not be boring.

There’s also several different projects that I am so itchy to start, but can’t until the move is completed. This makes me feel as though I’m in a hurry-up and sit still kind of mode. My sketchbooks and my daily work journal will be helpful in allowing me to flesh-out my ideas and plans. So when I do finally get to work on them, I have good plans to implement them.

So, what now?

Well, for one, it’s a short blog post. With each passing day, I feel as though I have more plates beginning to spin. Remember that my online shop is going to be shut down after June 12, 2021. When I open it up again, there will be some items that are no longer available. If you see something in my shop that you really want to purchase, it’s a good idea to buy soon!

Thank you for reading, and I will see you again next Friday.

 

 

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Wishful Thinking

What brought me here today:

These Friday blog posts are ones that I use to detail what I’m artwork I’m creating. I’ve begun some new, smaller dolls based on my 12 cm doll pattern. These dolls are among the last that I will be creating in my current workspace. Writing that feels odd to me. Perhaps more precisely, a bit bitter-sweet.

My husband and I currently in search of a new living space. And I’m trying to imagine what it will be like creating new artwork in that new space. I know that my artwork will continue to adapt and evolve to where ever I live and work. But part of me isn’t quite ready to let go of the creative space I’m sitting in as I type this.

Additional parts:

The biggest change to the overall doll design is that I’ve given each of these dolls additionally heads. I’ve had some fun adding more arms, and lengthening limbs and torsos as well. Pinpointing the creative need to do this has been elusive. But I think I’ve begun to figure it out.

There is something I find quite satisfying about making these dolls. There’s an indescribable feeling I get when I get to a certain stage of making a doll. It’s as if the piece has come to life within my hands. There’s all kinds of emotion mixed into this too. I begin to feel protective towards the doll. For me, it’s now it’s own being, separate, yet still connected to me.

On the surface:

May and June have been packed with a lot of change for me. A part of every day is now devoted to accomplishing a task that needs to be completed before we move. I’m not in any way complaining about these tasks. Nor am I finding them difficult, yet. However, they are becoming more numerous. And they have hard and fast deadlines.

The frequency, number and importance of these tasks is being manifested within my current series of semi-altered 12 cm dolls. They are the manifestation of insecurities and anxiety that I’m experiencing regarding the move. I’m either not able to articulate these feelings. Or perhaps even recognize them yet.

Frames of mind:

What could more heads mean? If I’m being as straightforward as possible, it could mean I wish I were smarter. Or perhaps I simply need more brain power to accomplish all the tasks that require my time and attention. Each of these dolls has the same face and head, only replicated.

Some of the heads I’ve added are looking backwards. Other times they’re looking in all directions. Still others, like Honey and Bizzy, have their additional heads facing forward. Penelope’s extra heads face completely backward. Arete’s extra heads faced off in all different directions.

Time keeps on slipping:

I recently had a conversation with a friend of mine. She indicated that she felt like it was just yesterday when we first met. Then she detailed some of the huge things that had occurred during that time. It really does feel like yesterday when we first met.

I can still see her long legs sprinting ahead of us in the snow and dark to stand in front of the last bus going downtown. She wanted to make sure the bus wouldn’t leave any of us behind. I remember saying to myself, “This one’s a keeper.” and we’ve been friends ever since.

Right now, I’m sitting at my desk. The large window in front of me looking out onto the beautiful early summer growth on the trees. I can barely see the lake right now. I’m drinking my afternoon tea and wondering exactly where I will be this time next year. More than likely, it will be in a similar situation. The view will be quite different. So will the tea.

Hamlet-like dilemma:

The situation I might find myself in may be similar to what I have right now. A work space, with a computer. And lots of artwork being made. A cup of tea sitting to my right. Any anxiety I may feel comes from not knowing exactly where I will be. I cannot imagine how this move will change the artwork that I create either.

The move is my ‘undiscovered country’. I’m extremely fortunate though. I can return to this place if I wish to. The rub is, that even if I do return to this place, it will all be different. Where I am and what I do in this space is uniquely ephemeral. Nothing stays the same. And that’s the way it should be.

So, now what?

Well, for starters, I’m going back to working on Honey and Bizzy. They need to have their hair completed. Then I will attend to other tasks that require my attention. I’ll keep moving and I’ll keep changing. Sisu.

Thank you for reading, and I will see you again next Friday,

 

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Relocation and Online Shop

What brought me here today:

My previous blog post talked briefly about some of the rather large changes that will be occurring in the life of myself and my husband in the near future. The timeline for our relocation is slowly becoming more solidified. I honestly think that getting ourselves emotionally ready to relocate, and making the plans to do so are the harder parts of the entire process. We’ve done this before, so it’s not a complete unknown to us.

There is a certain degree of freedom felt on my part once the process is completely underway. It forces me to to make decisions about what are the most important tools, supplies and materials that I cannot part with. When those decisions are made, donating, gifting and selling the remaining items is easy. While relocating isn’t ever easy, I do employ some methods for making it somewhat easier.

I’ll detail some of those super-easy-to-do methods later in this post. First, I need to do a little “businessing” of the business.

Online shop:

During the relocation, I will need to shut down my online shop for about four weeks. The last day that I will be able to receive and fulfill orders from my online shop will be Saturday, June 12, 2021. Orders received by 12 June will be sent by 15 June from Jyväskylä, Finland.

Large pieces, like Blue Doll #10, Sister Bougainvilla, Point of Conception, and y Tragedia, require more intricate and careful packaging to be sent through the post. I recommend that if you wish to purchase any of these pieces, purchasing sooner would be better. The closer I get to the deadline, the less I will be able to package larger pieces for the post.

When will online shop reopen?

My online shop will reopen Monday, July 19, 2021. When my online shop reopens in July, there will be some items no longer offered for sale. I recommend that if you see a piece that you want, purchase it before 12 June 2021. Because I cannot guarantee that it will be returning to the shop in the future.

If you have any questions regarding the temporary closure and reopening of my online shop, please contact me here.

What about the rest of your website?

Blog posts on Tuesdays and Fridays will (fingers crossed) still be written and posted every week. Relocating can be stressful and anxiety-riddled. Writing blog posts is something that I can still do with nothing more than a keyboard and an internet connection required. Keeping up with my blog posts will give me some needed structure during a somewhat chaotic period of time. It will also give me a way of communicating to the world.

What may change around a bit is what I’m writing about within each of the twice weekly blog posts. My Tuesday blog posts often have entrepreneurial and/or business themes. While my Friday blog posts are mostly about creating artwork and talking about what I’m making or thinking about making. Relocation time may see these thematic posts morph a bit.

And this is totally okay. My personal motto is: “If it’s not bleeding or on fire, I can handle it.” What this really means is, if I don’t need a physician or a fire truck full of fire fighters, I can fix and/or figure it out myself. Okay, perhaps with the help of my hardworking, long-suffering, Totoro-Bear husband.

Now for something you’ll really like:

I’m still creating artwork, but I’m keeping it small. I created eighteen tiny, teenie and teensie dolls knowing that they will be finished after I have set-up a work space in our new accommodations. Other pieces like the 4 Box Doll set, and the 4 Bottle Dolls will be finished in the new location as well.

I’ve started playing around with the physical form of the 12 cm dolls. I created Penelope and made her two hair buns actual little heads with faces on them. I was partially inspired to do this by the Kashira in Spirited Away. There was something that’s strangely visceral for me about these three rolling and stacking heads. I can’t quite explain it. I just wanted to make a small doll with stacked heads.

Another influence for this head-stacking is an episode of Adventure Time. It’s the one where Lumpy Space Princess runs away and terrorizes a village of little people that she calls ‘fat villagers‘. There’s something about those little villagers. I just want to stack them one on top of the other. The residents of the Candy Kingdom are also an influence. Especially the ice cream people.

Penelope’s sister:

The news right now, and most of the world is a bit scary. We’ve been watching the Netflix She-ra and the Princesses of Power series. It’s very good. The creators did a great job updating the characters while referencing the artistic styles of the past. It’s better storytelling and more cohesive than the Snyder Cut of Justice League in my opinion.

I was never a fan of the original She-ra cartoon or toys. I was 15. A little old for cartoons and dolls. Even though I loved cartoons and dolls at 15. I had to put up the pretense of NOT liking them for my fragile teenage psyche. (Insert eye roll here.) Newsflash to my former self: I’m 50 and make dolls and watch cartoons and I don’t care what anyone else thinks about it. The Geezer Paradox is on full display here!

Penelope’s sister, who still needs a name, has been influenced by the Princesses of Power. Especially the residents of Bright Moon. She’s getting a longer, poofier skirt too. Her boots will be more like something Glimmer would wear though. And perhaps a little crown, or three that are a little more Adventure Time/Candy Kingdom too. But first she needs a name.

Super-Easy-Organization-for-Relocation-Method:

This method of making decisions regarding what to do with all the items I’ve collected for my art midden over the years is super-easy. It leans into my intense love of putting things into categories. The four main categories are: Keep, Donate, Give Away/Gift and Trash/Recycle. There is also another category: Sell. I’ll write another post giving more detail about how I use all five of these categories in the weeks ahead.

During the sorting of items, they may be moved from one category to another several times. No decisions are final until the donation van pulls away from the curb, or the bag of treasures given to a friend or colleague!  Do not feel that you MUST give up items that you have a deep or sentimental connection with either. That can be traumatic. And this method is an attempt to reduce mental and emotional trauma.

Don’t feel as thought you MUST do all of this sorting in one day either. There is no need to get yourself mentally and emotionally exhausted or wound-up simply to finish the task in an arbitrarily set amount of time. Sometimes making a list of who I would like to give/gift items to is enough for the day. Other times, I can blow-through an entire wall of cabinet items in an hour and half. Take the time you need to do what you need to do!

So what now?

Well, I’m going to continue working on small pieces. 12 cm dolls mostly. Then there is all the cleaning, organizing and dispersal of non-critical tools, supplies and materials. And that’s just my studio items! Then I’ll be seeing friends and gifting a lot of stuff!

Thank you for reading, and I’ll see you again next Friday.

 

 

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Large Scale Life Changes

Changes are never easy, even when they are needed. Personally, I love my routines and I love change equally. Perhaps at my age it’s what change can offer that I find attractive. When my life changes, so does my artwork. And I do love exploring new places, meeting new people, and trying new things. Change can be fun, while at the same time not being incredibly easy. This is where I find myself as I write this.

But I’m getting ahead of myself. Let me give you a brief update of some of the events going on regarding my entrepreneurial exploits of the past week.

Workshop:

I was invited by Nuorten Taidetyöpaja to give an art workshop last week. The people in charge of the program asked me to present my Guatemalan worry doll workshop. It was so nice to be back in an arts educational space with eager and talented people to work with! I had so much fun sharing my artwork, ideas and creative art methods with everyone in the workshop.

The pandemic hit just when I was beginning to venture out an offer arts workshops locally. I had to change around my business model to selling physical artwork instead of arts instruction. The results of which are still mixed at best. Getting to put my teaching toes back into the workshop realm was a lovely gift for me. Mentally, emotionally and creatively beneficial to me.

What has even nicer than being invited to teach one arts workshop was being asked to teach another arts workshop! The lovely people who invited me to give the first Guatemalan worry doll workshop asked me if I could come again in June and present the workshop again. Wow! Of course I said yes! Again, this is so mentally, emotionally, and creatively beneficial to me. I’m incredibly grateful for the opportunity they’ve given me.

Social media:

I finally bit the bullet and got a Twitter account for myself (@KatieKinsmanArt). I’m still in the early stages of figuring out what I want the account to do for me. Right now, I’m just trying to get the hang of the platform. I feel a bit clunky at it at present.

Twitter has been around for quite a while now. I feel a bit like a late-comer to the whole thing. From a business standpoint, I know that I want to use Twitter to reach a wider audience. Hopefully a few people in this audience might want to read my blog posts or buy my artwork. Again, I’m still just figuring it all out!

Marielle has also gotten a Twitter account (@GoMarielleGo). Again, the hope is to grow her viewers. Her Instagram followers hover around 90 people, give or take 5 or so. I have so many creative directions that I want to take Marielle, but haven’t been able to. I’ve been waiting for some things to happen that would allow me to begin working in a direction that would hopefully mean growth.

The things that are finally happening:

My husband and I are relocating. This part of change is more difficult for me. Mostly because as a visual artist, I have so many supplies, tools, and materials to consider. As well as the physical artwork I’ve created for exhibits, and for sale. You never know how much ‘stuff’ you have until you’re having to move to a different location!

I’ve pushed back launching several different projects because I didn’t want relocation to interrupt them. Perhaps this is why I went ahead and got the Twitter ball rolling? It was something new I could do that wouldn’t be up-ended by relocating? Patreon, instructional videos, longer-form Marielle stories, YouTube, a newsletter, etc., are all things that I want and need to start! I just didn’t want to start something big, like shooting videos, only to have them stop because I have to attend to relocating my studio!

I’m not posting any details regarding our relocation until I’m comfortable with it. A large part of my personality likes having a degree of anonymity. Or at least as much as can be allowed as an artist who basically will tell her life story to a complete stranger on the bus.

So…

Now you can see where my mind has been over the past few weeks. I’ve been dealing with depression on top of all of this too. It’s not been necessarily a super-happy-fun-time-explosion if you catch my drift. My husband has been AMAZING throughout all of this. I would not have my website or business without his constant assistance. He also knows that relocation isn’t something I’m terribly keen on. So he’s been doing a lot of work to help me think of this relocation as more of an adventure than a terrible, overwhelming task.

Thank you for reading, and I’ll see you again next Tuesday.