|Banning Mill - front entrance. I lived on 3rd floor (up the ramp)|
Would I love to find a group of people that I can connect with creatively? Yes.
Would I love to find a group of people that I can bounce ideas off of, that would encourage me, that I could encourage back and that we could all draw inspiration from? Yes, yes, yes and yes.
A year or so ago, I set out with intention to find my way back to a more creative life. I can see and I am proud of the progress I've made so far. But there are times that I get frustrated. I want more and I want it now. The problem is, I don't always
know want to admit what "more" means.
I've thought about the idea of selling art. I could do it, but honestly - I don't think that's what I want to do. If it's a by-product, then fine, but it's not my desired focus.
If I'm still. If I'm quiet. I hear what I want.
|Banning Mill - back/facing Snake Creek. My first apt here was 3rd floor, where the vines are over the windows.|
A space. A home. A place where community gathers. A place that inspires. A place that has warmth and laughter and a place that you aren't afraid to get 'dirty' or messy.
If I were putting a great big giant wish out into the universe, it would be that I could have a place to host creativity. It could be a retreat. It could be a place that people come to daily. It would be a reprieve. It could even be a place where people live possibly. I don't know the details really, but it would be a place centered in creativity. It would have supplies. It would welcome artists and crafters and people who think that they can't or shouldn't or wouldn't be able to. It would house teaching. It would house learning. It would house exploring and inspiration and wanting more. It would host women and men, kids and people of all ages. It would be the circus, but without animals or their droppings and smashed peanuts on the floor. It would be exciting and new and safe and open and a place for people to connect to themselves, each other and creativity.
That is my dream.
It brings tears to my eyes to think about. It's big. I have absolutely no clue how to get there, but I do believe in the power of putting things out there into the big ol' universe. So I guess that this is me doing that. It's terrifying, really, but that's how I know it's true. I wouldn't be scared if I didn't want it. Selling art doesn't sing to me like it once did. When the song was loud and clear, I painted and I figured out how to sell my stuff and that's what I did. It's not what I want anymore. I want this. My heart sings the sweetest "yes" every time I think if it. I can't help but smile when I think of it.
|Inside the mill.|
And when I think about this place that doesn't exist for me today, I think about a place where I used to live. It held magic. It held all of the things that I want to create again. Except, it really wasn't a retreat or a community built with the specific intention of creating art, although artists, musicians and creative types all flocked to it. It was a mill, built in the 1800's. I had the immense privilege of living there for about 2 years. When I am still and quiet, and feeling a little sad for that missing, or yearned for, thing - my mind goes there. When Heather and I sit on the front porch and talk about what we would do if we won the lottery (which we don't play), my first response is always, "I'd buy the mill." And I totally would try my damnedest to do just that if I ever came into a couple million dollars.
Outside of that dream though, I do think of buying other buildings/spaces that could serve my purpose just as well. There's a church that I pass buy every day, and I've started to think about the potential of that space. It's not for sale, but I think about what it might look like inside - what I could do with the second building behind the main church and what kind of people and gatherings might assemble there. It's lovely to daydream about. Again - I have no freaking idea how to do what I want to do, but it's what my heart wants all the same. I've put it out there. Now what?
|From the wooden bridge that crosses Snake Creek in back of the mill|