I started last year with intentions of spending a whole lot of time exploring my new love: wall art. I got through the winter and the spring creating new works and exploring new ideas. It was thrilling!
I made my first sale of wall art at the American Craft Show in April, where I was also awarded the Award of Excellence in Booth Design. Things were looking good! Then, my handbag line got picked up by the prestigious Walker Art Center's gift shop, as well as the UptownMN shop in the MSP Airport. I was so happy!
And then came mid-summer. Unexpectedly, the year turned into (cue the Jaws theme music: dun dunnnnnn, dun dun dunnnnnnn... ) The Year of the Shark.
The Year of the Shark
Of course I was beyond thrilled with the orders, the feature, and the attention. However, after weeks and weeks of shark-making, I started to feel disappointed that I didn't have time to work on new pieces of textile art -- or anything else, such as handbags, bug purses, or even blog posts (note my long absence from blogging last year).
As Autumn rolled around, I was ready to stop making sharks and get back to my explorations of art.
But, the Year of the Shark didn't stop there.
My favorite retailer, Uncommon Goods, was looking to get in on the shark action! After a smattering of small orders, they suddenly placed an order for 120 sharks (!) in November. I almost told them, "No thanks, I've had enough of sharks for the year." But, I challenged myself to take the order and completed 120 sharks in just three weeks.
Now that was an epic finale to the unexpected Year of the Shark!
How many sharks did I actually make last year, you ask? I've crunched the numbers and it turns out that I made approximately 440 Shark Bite and Baby Shark Bite pouches last year.
That comes out to about 5 months worth of working on sharks full-time!
What got me through such an intensive amount of time creating sharks? Well, it was helpful to have a vacation to look forward to!
Now I'm back in my studio, thinking about the year ahead. I plan to make some changes. I'm ready to make this year The Year of Exploring Textile Art. And so that it doesn't get away from me again, I'll have to do things a little bit differently.
I think sharks will need to take a back burner if I want to make progress on my art.
First, however, I have an order of 30 sharks to complete...
Happy New Year!