Saturday, November 26, 2011

Winds of Change

Winds of Change, Acrylic on Canvas © Kristye Addison Dudley

It's been a great holiday week so far. I am getting tons of rest and working towards a new year full of personal goals. One of which is running my first 1/2 marathon. So far I have only gotten new shoes, but you have to start somewhere. I am so grateful for so many thing I can't even count them. I hope you had a great Thanksgiving Day. We spent the day with friends of ours here in Bossier City. They have a 2 year old little girl, who our 18 month old KJ couldn't get enough of and a 5 week old little boy, who has given my husband a little baby fever.

We did a pot luck and completely stuffed ourselves. I have been trying to make those left overs last as long as possible, I really don't want to spend this weekend cooking and cleaning up the kitchen any more than necessary. I have also been helping do graphics for a dear friend of mine who is getting married on Sunday. We are not going to be able to make it, but I will be there in spirit.

Next week I am starting to refocus my career. I will start training to become an art teacher for our gifted and talented program for elementary and middle schools here in the area. It's a wonderful program that hires professional artists to teach within the schools to children who show an aptitude for the arts. Sometimes, the work in "artwork", can get sort of heavy.  I hope that I am able to share my knowledge with the students and they can renew the playfulness simple joy of creating.

For the first time I will be putting my artwork first in my career. I will create (paint/sculpt/design), teach and freelance for a living. Change is sort of intimidating, but I know that my path has already been laid out for me and I just need to have faith and let God lead me.

Be blessed,
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Thursday, November 17, 2011

That's what friends are for

 "The Team" Acrylic on Canvas 30" x 24" © Kristye Addison Dudley
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Last Friday, the opening was great! I met so many kind and talented people in the art community and I was surrounded by our new family of friends here. It felt so good to share my art with them and receive positive feedback. Since art is so personal, art show openings tend to make me feel a bit like I am standing exposed in a room full of judges. But luckily I made it through without a scratch. The next morning, I awoke with an overwhelming feeling of gratitude.

As I mentioned in my blog last week, I "Remember when..." I used to go and visit friends at the drop of a dime. Being married with a little one, makes that spontaneity a bit less spontaneous. But, because of my amazing husband I was able to catch a last minute flight out of town to go and visit with some girlfriends that I have really been missing. So Saturday morning, I got on a plane and flew back east to visit for two days.

I started crying before I even left the house, I missed my baby and my husband immediately. I finally stopped crying on the plane. The poor guy next to me probably thought I was sick with all that tissue. I pulled it together, just in time to cry the rest of the weekend. Back story, once I start crying I can't stop. I can cry at just about everything, I cried praying with friends, I laughed so hard I cried, I cried during the veterans tribute during halftime the football game on Sunday just thinking about my husband's possible deployment next year. I mean really, the waterworks just keep on coming! But it kind of felt good to let my guard down, and luckily I was surrounded by my girls who give great hugs.

Baby Shower/Girls Weekend a 2005

My girlfriends from college used to have a "Girls Weekend" every couple of years. We took time to reconnect and were able to encourage one another with our relationships, our children and our dreams. We don't get to have those big weekends as much, but we do our best to stay close. We even watched one of our girlfriends receive her Doctorate from Harvard via the web. We always do what we can, and we know that we are always with each other in spirit. I think we all need that kind of team in our lives. The type of people who cheer your successes as if they are their own. I am so fortunate to have old and new friends that are so giving and loving.

My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one's life for one's friends. You are my friends if you do what I command. I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master's business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you. You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit—fruit that will last—and so that whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you. This is my command: Love each other. (John 15:12-17 NIV)

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Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Back in Business

Well after 5 years, I am going to be in my first show! This photo is of me setting up. The show is in a unique place here in Shreveport called mainspace @ artspace. It's an exhibition space for local, regional and national artists. This juried show includes 17 artists and is an introduction of sorts for me into the arts community here. Everyone has been so nice to me the "new girl" and the opening is this Friday.
 If you live in the area, there are more details on my site, and I would love to see you there.

The space is unique, the walls are black, 12ft tall and each artist has a tall column to show their work. I submitted quite a few works, but the ones showing first are the ones that looked the best together in the space. I am also showing my hand painted pillows (that's what the white shelf in the picture is for). I will post more photos from the show later.

I have been thinking a lot about time lately. How to get the most out of it, how to be more disciplined with it and how to enjoy it. I just got off the phone with a friend of mine and we were talking about the last time we saw each other and all of our friends getting together. Because I live far from my college friends, it's hard to stay connected (even with Facebook). Sometimes we have to just make the time.

So I am getting back in the business of getting my priorities in check. There are so many "I remember whens...", that it doesn't even feel like "I ever...".
Like the following: I remember when...
  • I used to run a mile each morning before work
  • I used to dance for over 6 hours a week (Zumba a few times a week will work just fine)
  • I used to get really dolled up and stay on top of the latest fashions (who am I kidding, I would rather be in yoga pants 24/7, with no make up, but I do like getting spiffed up) 
  • I used to travel to see friends and family at the drop of a hat
  • and so on, and so on

Many things have changed for me to not be able to do all of those things, but I could TOTALLY do some of them. But it's so easy to make an excuse as to why I can't. So if you have some "I remember whens..." that you have been putting off. Let me know and maybe we can cheer each other on to get them accomplished. One of mine is seeing family and friends more frequently. And that is the first one that I am going to take care of. I have booked my first spontaneous plane ticket to reconnect. Hopefully it's the first of many new adventures for me.

Be blessed and send me your updates,
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Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Rejoice always

Leap of Faith - 6ft x 6ft Acrylic on Canvas © Kristye Addison Dudley
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Last weekend I participated in a charity benefit at my church. It was for breast cancer awareness and pay tribute to survivors in the community. There was a great turn out, and I was one of the vendors on hand to share my work. I met so many wonderful people.

I donated a print of "In the Huddle" To the speaker. Her story of her life's trials and tribulations was astonishing. But her spirit of thanksgiving was inspiring.

The next day we went to the church of a family friend. The pastor is discussing a series on joy. And the message was right on time. One thing that I find myself constantly battling with is keeping my mind focused on pure and simple joy.

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

 16 Rejoice always, 17 pray continually, 18 give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

I pray and I give thanks in all situations (not just for my blessings), but sometimes I let things temporarily steal my joy. The pastor gave us some homework for the week. First he said write a Thank You note to someone who has helped you or that you appreciate. The second was to sing songs of praise this week. Right away I started thinking of who I can thank, then I started thinking of songs.

Yesterday's song was "Smile" bt Kirk Franklin. Today's song is "This little light of mine". It just makes me smile and KJ likes it too. This weekend, I set up for my first art show in 4 + years. The show opens 11/11/11 at Artspace here in Shreveport, LA. I am so excited to share my work and meet artist in the community.

I wish you a joyful week. And I am so thankful for each and everyone of you.

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