Thursday, February 28, 2013

I Was in the Desert

I got home late last night after a week away in the desert of Arizona and California. The trip was absolutely awesome! The Yuma Art Symposium was so much fun and my lecture went very, very well. I think it might be the best one I've given so far. It felt conversational and relaxed. There was a good order and flow to the images and story and my conclusion was better. (I always struggle with the conclusion.) It did start off with some technical issues that were quickly remedied by Andy Cooperman. This was the second time he's helped me out like this. This first time was SNAG 2007 and he held my computer for me while I gave my presentation! Thanks, again, Andy! The other extremely cool thing that happened was that my teacher at the University of Washington, Mary Lee Hu, introduced me and said some really lovely things. It was such an honor and totally unexpected. I didn't know she was going to introduce me until I got to the symposium. The rest of the event was great--I met tons of wonderful artists and spent quality time with dear friends. My favorite presentation was by photographer, Deborah Ford. Her narrative work blends photographs of landscape with map imagery.

I also ate some of the best Mexican food I've ever had.

thanks to Rachel Shimpock for the iPhoto pic!

Deborah Ford
Ring by Kaiya Rainbolt - it was part of the Yuma student show and my favorite piece there 

Next I hopped in a car and took a little road trip to Long Beach, CA with my friend and colleague, Kristin Beeler. We drove through the desert of southern California and visited some truly unique and unusual places: the Imperial Sand Dunes, Salvation Mountain, and the Salton Sea. We also went to a huge date farm for date shakes and then stopped near Palm Springs to take pictures of the hundreds of windmills that line the valley.
Imperial Sand Dunes
 Salvation Mountain
Salton Sea

On Tuesday I did two back-to-back lectures, one at Long Beach City College where Kristin teaches and another one I added during the Yuma Symposium (thanks Kaiya!) at Cal State University Long Beach. Both talks detailed my career, followed by question and answer time and then some one-on-ones with students. Both lectures were great and I loved talking with everyone afterward. That's definitely my favorite part. Thanks to Kristin at LBCC and Susanna Spears and Elise at CSULB for inviting me.

And, I managed to squeeze in two awesome tattoos, one in Yuma and one in Long Beach.

It was a very exciting and inspiring six days.

I posted lots of pics on Flickr.

Thanks for reading.

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