Date: October 21, 2021
Wow! That’s really all I can say. Wow!
Arts at the Armory was an amazing event. Ninety local artists presented their work and demonstrated their passions. I was fortunate enough to be there both days and met many of the artists and had the opportunity to talk about art and community with hundreds of attendees!
Pre-COVID 19, Tacoma Arts Month included Open Studio Tours which allowed the public to see the places where local artists created their magic. As much as I liked seeing their finished work, I was more interested in seeing their process, their workbench, their well-worn tools and paint splattered aprons; the highlight of the experience was meeting the artist in their element and hearing them talk about their passion in the places where they make the magic happen!
At this year’s event I tried my best to recreate my own modest studio inside the cavernous Armory Building. I brought along my vintage Dryad Leicester book press, which I use to create my prints, as well as the original linoleum blocks that I used to create the prints I had for sale. I covered a table with newsprint and had visitors create their own free prints using the lino-blocks, my book press, a baren, or my trusty spoon. Here are a few of the photos I took during the set up and at the show.
Like many people who I talked to over those two days, I am torn about which is the better format for the future: Open Studio Tours or bring all the artists together again. I found the solution in conversation with an elderly arts patron who suggested that they do both next year! I love that idea!
Another event I was able to participate in was “The Writer's Workshop Series: Structure & Outline”, with Jenny Bartoy and presented by Creative Colloquy. Jenny, a Tacoma-based editor and writer, shared the tips and tools she has learned in her career as an editor and gave us insight into ways to create the outline and structure for our writing. Especially pertinent to me were the tools she shared to take a critical look at a work that is (mostly?) complete. One striking thing I took away from the workshop was how closely aligned the story in my manuscript is to Joseph Campbell’s “Hero’s Journey”. I have a lot of work to do still on the structure of my story, but it was exciting to see the similarities.
Jenny is also leading a workshop on November 6, which I am looking forward to, called “Show & Tell”. Check it out on her website to learn more!
Another upcoming event I will be participating in is NaNoWriMo 2021 (National Novel Writing Month). This is the first time I will have participated in this annual activity, which encourages writers to pen 50,000 words in the month of November. I am excited to use this as an opportunity to finish the second part/sequel to Entrance to Hell. Many of the writing activities and prompts that NaNoWriMo has for writers to use have been helpful for me in preparing for this work!