Most of you know me as the crazy dog lady now running a dog boarding business, Rescue Buddy Boarding & Beyond out of my home. What you may not know is this business was born while taking a year off from my former business as an art fair artist-AKA Twisted Sister,the crazy bead lady. I did the art fair circuit for 12 years selling sculptures created out of tiny seed beads. Now that I think about my work, a lot of the pieces were dogs. And I did not even have a dog at the
time. Foreshadowing? Hmmm?
Most of this time was quite enjoyable. And I was able to support my son while making art.
My motto was: "I make art to feed my soul. I sell art to feed my son".
The art fair community was a nomadic tribe of creative loving folks that would go out of their way to help their fellow artisans. And I felt like I was living the retired life by having lazy mornings and creating art all day in my slippers. Sounds romantic right? Well try hauling a 60lb tent through the mud in the pouring rain. Or sitting out in that tent in 100 degree weather trying to sell jewelry that no one really needs. Would you pay your employer $500 to sit on a slab of concrete while doing your job for two days and maybe only make that $500 back? Romance gone yet? Well I promised myself that I would not be hauling that tent around when I was 60. And all along I would dream about "taking a year off" from the art fair craziness.
My chance to do just that came in 2008. The circumstances that allowed me to do this financially
will be discussed in a future post. Let me just say that if any of you or your family has a rare type of lung cancer, mesothelioma, please call a lawyer immediately. Thanks dad for providing for your family even after you have passed.
2008 was to be a year totally filled with art making. No thought to "will this sell" which for me
was always a creativity downer. But to my surprise as weeks went by the less I was making or even thinking about art. More and more time was being spent rescuing dogs by volunteering with Pet Haven. The rewards were instant and certainly not financial. But the lack of cash did not deter me. Being self-employed since I was 27, money was never a big part of my drive and it had always arrived when needed. So I continued on this new exciting path helping to rehome dogs. To see a shy starving pup blossom into a bouncing playful dog with just a little love and good nutrition was worth way more than any paycheck.
Throughout the year, I did question myself about making art. But as 2008 turned to 2009 my passion for helping dogs was showing me my future. Rescue Buddy Boarding & Beyond was born as a way to feed my soul and feed my son. RB3 is still in its infancy. Thanks to all of you that helped make my dream come true. My 60th birthday is a still a few years off and that 60lb tent is now only set up during garage sales.
RB3 is fostering our 27th dog Jake and we welcome adopted rescue dogs into our home every week while their owners are taking time off. As for making art , I have revamped my studio and the creative juices are flowing. There is a cat teapot patiently waiting to come alive. No I am not going to turn into the crazy cat lady.
This video inspired me to write this posting. Maybe it will inspire you too. What would you do if you had a year off?
TED Talks Every seven years, designer Stefan Sagmeister closes his New York studio for a yearlong sabbatical to rejuvenate and refresh their creative outlook. He explains the often overlooked value of time off and shows the innovative projects inspired by his time in Bali.