As I look back to 2021, I can only think of the final scene in Federico Fellini’s 8 ½. (Here it is if you haven’t seen it.) I feel as though I am one of the characters dancing in the circle: laughing and a bit uncertain of my role in the world, holding hands with strangers and dancing by a spaceship on a beach, floating back and forth between reality and fantasy to the music of circus fanfare.
Clarity through community
Due to the frenetic energy that often lies under the surface of uncertainty, I have asked myself many times this year, “What is this life?!” Sometimes asked in amusement, sometimes in desperation. After a few rounds of brain gymnastics, I’d usually arrive at the answer of “life is whatever you want it to be, kiddo.” Whenever I felt insecure about acting on this answer and stepping out as my true self, you encouraged me with love and gave me hope.
Thank you, to each and every one of you, for supporting me and my work as I continue to walk this muddy and sparkly path of the artist. It’s now been more than a year since I closed my 9-to-5 work laptop, and since then, I feel like I have made many dreams come true, from working out in the field with NYC’s Department of Sanitation, getting a children’s book signed (coming to a bookstore near you autumn 2022!), vending at local markets as an artist, trying out professional dog walking and cat sitting, to making my own merch and selling it online!
Happy tees ☀︎
Which brings me to these tees! In case you missed it, I’m a featured TeePublic designer this week, and that means everything in my shop is on sale. Do take a look, especially if a loved one’s birthday is coming up! Happy birthday to my Capricorns out there.
A note on sustainability 🌱 : I decided to work with TeePublic as they print on demand (which greatly reduces waste), all their apparel printing is done with non-toxic print materials, and they print and ship from a global printer that is closest to your delivery address.
If you told me last year that I would be speaking enthusiastically into a megaphone at volunteer street cleanups in the middle of NYC, yep, I wouldn’t have believed you. And if you told me I’d be a paid auntie to multiple cats and a pit bull, and I’d be in talks with a publisher? No way, dude.
All of this is surprising and weird to me too, but more and more, I think I’m learning to swim through the process and trust my self and the community I build along the way. As my husband reminded me the other day, “You miss 100% of the shots you don't take.” I’m going to take those words into 2022 and really think about where I want to see my work, and how I want it to live in the world. Visualise, prepare as best as I can, and take action. 🏃🏻
As many of you know, I plan on making another big dream come true: moving to Portugal. By the end of 2022, my goal is to take a one-way flight to Lisbon and open the door to my new apartment there. It’s scary to think of all the things that I need to do between now and then, but I feel so happy that I can finally hear and listen to that voice in my heart: Go for it, sister!
You know that I will be bringing all of you with me on this journey, so get ready! I am grateful to be surrounded by such kind, supportive people like you, and that we get to experience this life together.
Just as you believe in me, I believe in you.
Soul spark ✴
What’s been inspiring me lately
This scene in Latcho Drom has been filling my head on misty days. Nicolae Neacșu, the lăutar playing the violin, sings of the dictatorship in Romania and the revolution that followed. The full film, which is a musical masterpiece about the Romani people's journey from India to Spain, can be viewed on YouTube. A magical treat. BIG love and shoutout to my neighbour and friend Ralph for sharing Latcho Drom with me.