My schedule calendar can be blank for days on end, then other times, there is so much to do.
Last year, my husband, Jene Youtt and I missed the opening reception of a gallery that I was exhibiting at in Vermont and I will be a part of an exhibit, a group juried international competition again in July – DarkRoom Gallery. Entitled “Secrets and Mysteries” 2 of the 4 images I submitted were selected and of course I am thrilled.
The catalog has been published and I ordered one for myself. Financially, VT will win out.
I’ve tried to get myself and Jene down to Haiti with Monica Watkins, founder of Art In Motion, photographing the children of Martine Longchamp’s Diakonos Orphanage. I didn’t know how I was going to swing a trip to Haiti, finances are tight as the only way my money flows is out. The lottery gods have not yet shone upon me (the $3 winning ticket I hold won’t quite do it) and although Jene and I do manage to travel, we do it with as small a budget as possible.
Monica’s passion for art and for children, mirrors my own. The future is in the hands of the children and it is our job to ensure that we provide the tools they need, especially when hard times fall upon their innocence. Their situation is not of their own making but that which a natural disaster left in their wake. Art in any form has always been my means for expressing my feelings: my hopes, sorrow, love, joy, desires or just the beauty that surrounds us in nature. I was very lucky to have parents who understood how music can transform the soul, or how the written word can be a most powerful tool, or how doodling let my mind run free way before I ever realized how important that could be.
Being exposed to the arts and knowing that someone appreciates what you create, is very significant, especially for a child. Not everyone can be a rocket scientist, but we all have the ability to create. To feel and to put those feelings into motion. Music, dance, poetry, art in any form is an expression of who you are and how you perceive the things around you. To have what you do appreciated by others is such an uplifting experience. But the real experience is that it connects one human to another and has from the beginning of time. It touches each and everyone of us and it doesn’t matter why we like or dislike something, it’s that art can pause us in thought and makes one wonder what was behind the artist’s heart and soul that comes through the in their creative process.
In June, Art Day Celebration’s fundraiser has enabled Monica to once again open up this world of creativity to some very appreciative children by bringing an art workshop to where they live. Her tireless efforts and those of friends and sponsors understand the value that she will bring to these kids. One person can make a difference and I know I speak for her when I say thank you to all the generous people who gathered under 1 roof to be a part of her mission.
It’s such a wonderful feeling to know that what you do matters and it is an honor to be a small part this quest. When you give back or pay it forward, you are receiving a great deal in return. For me, being a part of what can transform a young life is so important so although I can’t be a part of this trip, I will do whatever I can to help Monica and her mission.
Hopefully, Jene and I can get to Haiti in the fall.