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My First Juried Exhibit

I’m sorry I wasn’t more brave. I wanted to tell you. I had it all typed out, but I erased my fearless words and didn’t announce that I entered this painting into a juried exhibit.

Because I’ve never made it into a juried show before.

Over the past two years, I silently entered and got rejected from exhibits and competitions. Twenty years ago, I held multiple awards, scholarships, and made the news for my art. Now, as a mom returning to her easel, I’ve been dusting myself off, nearly starting over in the professional art world.

I want you to be able to enter the dance space of my paintings, to breathe in their effervescence, to see the colors and textures in person, with no screen barrier divide. I like to push myself and take on challenges to keep growing and crossing barriers.

So, even though I’ve spent money for someone to tell me “not good enough,” multiple times, I keep putting myself out there. I want to lead by example and encourage you to do that, too. Keep going. Keep your hopes high. Throw yourself out there, aiming for big things— things you dream about and things you might not even be able to contemplate fully just yet.

Every failure, every rejection, is a hard pull back. And you know what happens when something is pulled back hard enough? It launches forward fast and far!

Yesterday, on my birthday, no less, I waited as peers reported receiving their acceptance letters to this exhibit, while I heard nothing. This morning, I decided to finally be brave and checked in on the status of my application. To my utter joy, I got a reply from the organizer stating he had made an error in my email address, and that is why no acceptance had be sent!

😭 I am still crying tears of joy as I tell you this painting, MY painting— one of 51 from 102 submitted— was accepted into the juried exhibit! For the very first time, I made it in! “The Next 20 Years,” will be hung mid-March at the Van Single Fine Art Center in Byron Center, Michigan and remain on exhibit through June 13th. Keep going, my friends! Be braver than me! 🙌

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