tiny flower, 2014
I remember her telling me I must spend time alone each year. Not an hour or a day, but a week, or even two. It was, she told me, essential to my remaining whole, and not losing myself in a relationship. A creative person must remain an individual. She had, and believed it improved her sense of self, her relationships, and her work.
She was my tutorial instructor one semester during my MFA program. We often ended up discussing life more than work in these one-on-one courses. When making art is the work, separating work from life is difficult. One becomes the other and vice versa. So she instructed me in living an artist's life, although I believe she thought any person, man or woman, artist or not, should live this way.
When she traveled, she took the long way. She avoided airplanes and liked to drive instead, feeling every curve and bump she traversed, watching the landscape change, rolling down the windows and feeling the weather shift.
She wanted to feel the space between home and where she was going. She took the distance seriously. She believed in this ritual wholeheartedly. It was how she cleared her mind and made space for the new.