I drove by the Masonic Center of South Pasadena this afternoon, and saw the giant “Let There Be Light” engraved on the building’s façade. After the initial conspiracy theories came to mind, the Latin translation for the expression did: Fiat Lux. I’m a geek. I know it.
The last 48 hours have been illuminating indeed, and in the best way possible. I stumbled across this amazing video via an Australian photo blog I follow, and I remembered why I love life. Having never had the privilege of seeing a Turkish artist at work, or seen any finished specimens in the motherland, this documentation of Ebru in process was a real treat. I know it’s a widely respected art there, but I’m afraid Iznik took hold of the popular cultural art sector when they realized just how popular and profitable it was with tourists. Alas. I showed this video to my mom, and after it ended, she turned to me and asked, “how are we going to track him down?” I can’t express how lucky I am to have a parent who 110% supports my dreams. In this case, about 90% more than I do, myself. I laughed and told her I could under no circumstance have that conversation. And then, me being me, I found the artist’s son (who made the video) and emailed him about his father. Damn you, universe! I have a non-stop ticket to Istanbul in three weeks and I have no intention of using it!
In even more brilliant news, I received a message on Etsy asking whether I might be interested in selling my cards wholesale! Umm… SO AWESOME! Not only is this the first time I’ve ever been approached by a shop, but this shop happens to be located in southeast Portland. The lovely Charlotte of Palace apparently saw my balloon and stained glass cards and thought they’d be a good addition to her merchandise. Checking out her blog, I see a lot of our tastes overlap and I have every confidence that my work will find good homes at Palace. The cherry on top – the store is right off of Belmont, which in my brain, is home to biscuit breakfasts, cupcakes before they were cool, and the Stumptown Annex. Delicious, delicious memories. Despite the four years that I’ve been gone from Portland, it still tugs at me. It still feels like home. (One of four, I grant you.) All the drizzle, the coffee slinging, the fierce knitting. The cute boys with their plaid shirts and tattoos. I was a goner. So hooray that a small piece of me can return to a city I so genuinely love, and a neighborhood as well.
I think I see the sun rising.
Also rising: (shameless plug ahead) my new necklaces.
So despite the look of things, I did go ahead and take pictures of my goodies in their new home at Distant Lands. Or, to be more precise, I asked my coworker and friend (who also happens to be a wildly talented photographer) to blow off his real projects and fiddle around with my camera. He spent a very appreciated hour teaching me how to actually use my camera – think F stops and iris openings and shutter speeds – and then tried to combat the chaotic hell hole of lighting that is our bookstore. Here are some of the pictures!
the cards all pretty and polished in their clear A7 sleeves
if you've never seen a travel bookstore... this is what it looks like.
he caught a wildly unflattering picture of me checking in that big stack o' books
I normally wouldn’t think to include any of these pictures, but honestly a part of me sees them and still doesn’t quite comprehend their reality. I need to remind myself that somehow, sometime last week, my little paper babies moved on from their comfy nest of my dining room table and storage bins. They’re out there in the world. People are picking them up and looking at them, and shock of shocks – they’re buying them. I got a text from Wayne on the 14th, a week ago. The cards had been there for an afternoon.
Hey, a lady bought three of your cards. 🙂 She’s a graphic designer… sounded educated and put together… Not just a crazy… she kept talking about them… Said they should cost more. Good job!!! 🙂
Needless to say, that certainly made my evening. As did the “Sold another one :)” text from Thursday, and the next one on Saturday which reached me as I iced my back after having thrown it out the day before. I owe Wayne a batch of really really good cupcakes. Or a bottle of vodka or something. My other friends at work have been equally as excited and enthusiastic, albeit less eager to spend their texts on me. It’s been so wonderful to feel such encouragement from them, and from my boss.
Tomorrow is a pretty big day for me and for Ink Blot. Tomorrow I have my first real meeting… and it’s with a stationery store. A stationery store with incredible reviews on Yelp, no less. I’d be lying if I said I weren’t nervous. I spent my back-injured weekend alternately dozing in bed with my trusty ice and trying to organize my life and do an actual inventory. With an Excel spreadsheet. I’ve gone through every box, shaken out the cobwebs, and seen how my work has progressed. It’s kind of amazing. And you know what? It kind of makes me proud. I can do this. Because I already am.
Croisez les doigts!