Last night, at my husband’s sound-art show, my friend Suzanne and I were talking about this blog, and the challenge I put out yesterday, to try to get people to write every day with me. Suzanne was fabulously bedecked in a red flapper dress and a long coat with a faux fur collar, all of which my daughter kept petting. She is an artist, so I encouraged her to be a part of this challenge by doing a little drawing each day, taking a picture and sending it to me. She said yes, so I wanted to put this out there — any form of art, if you want to commit to doing it daily for a while, could fit into this community of art-making I’m trying to build. In fact, I’m committing to writing, but on the days when I just don’t get to it, at the very least I will dance. In dance class yesterday, I let go of something mid-class that I had been holding on to — I’m not sure what it was but it was something I really didn’t need. My amazing dance teacher, Dudley Flores, kept urging us, “Dance from a deeper place! From your gut!” and I took that in, finding my center and flinging my arms and legs out from there. It may have looked ridiculous, but it felt incredible
Anyway, dancing and visual art count, too. I guess whatever inspires you, whatever you consider art, could count for this challenge. I talked to this very sweet older woman last night at the show — she was wearing this fabulous lemon yellow patterned blouse, a big turquoise necklace, and little tortoise-shell glasses — the result was perfection. I told her, “You know you have the best style in here”, and we got to talking about how all my favorite dressers are in their 70’s. I mean, look at artist and writer Beatrix Ost here in the green headdress (I guess I am obsessed with green headdresses overall). One of her favorite sayings is “In your body is a good place to be.” Yes! There is also this woman at church who is so incredibly well-dressed that when I entered her number into my phone, I put her in as “Fancy Joyce”. She keeps saying she wants to bring me some of her old shoes — that will be a happy day. Here she is with my daughter a several months ago, looking typically amazing.
I guess what I’m getting at is I am finding inspiration lately in unlikely places, and really enjoying the ride. On Thursday evening, walking home from dance class with my friend Amanda, a woman drove by and Amanda turned to me and said, “Wow, she looks like a badass.” Instantly joking with herself, she said, “I wonder what tipped me off to that? The flaming red hair? The open-topped Jeep she’s driving wildly down 18th St? The music she’s bumping?” (I’m paraphrasing — I’m not sure if Amanda would use the word “bumping” in that context) The next day in dance class, the one I mentioned earlier in which I really let go, I channelled that woman. I said to myself, “How would that badass redhead Tank Girl dance right now?” I was only able to capture it for a few moments, but I’m hoping I can bring her into my life more and more. The results could be dangerous, but they’ll surely be fun.