A little over a year ago I went on the trip of a lifetime to see my relatives in Washington. I stayed in two towns, the first St.John a grain town with lots of beautiful rolling hills and one main high street. The second was Elk Washington, more of a huge pine forest with no high street just a one stop shop and a grange hall (white wood building similar to a town hall founded after the civil war).
What has this got to do with printmaking? I hear you ask? Well its got everything to do with being a freelance creative and understanding your own practice as well as being appreciative for what you have and have achieved.
During my visit I was surprised at how many printmakers I met. It seems that the Washington area (and the USA in general) has lots of screen printing companies and being a ‘printmaker’ isn’t so much different to being a shop assistant or working for the local authority. Compared to England it was great to see so many people keeping print alive!
While on the long journey home I had time to think about being a printmaker in Blackpool and where I sit within the printmakers of the North West. I came to the conclusion that I am a big fish in a small pond instead of a small fish in a big pond where printmakers are in abundance. Although there are a handful of printmakers in my town there is not many people doing what I do. Using the traditional presses, creating individual art and sharing these skills with others for free through grant funded projects. Most of the people I share my skills with have never heard of printmaking before or understand what a letterpress is – and this is wonderful!
My question to you is what do you do and why is it great? I think that all to often we read social media, the news and magazines that can leave us feeling not too happy about something in our life. The usual What can we do better? What can we achieve more of? When actually we already do something quite amazing but don’t ever admit to it or claim it as our own. I am guilty of this too of course and I wanted to share with you my own great story (however much it made me cringe!) because livin’ the good life is already happening I just don’t think we know it!
Check out my wanderlust board on Pinterest to see more dreamy images of livin’ the good life.