I truly and sincerely believe that you must travel. Sure you can always make excuses, LAWD knows I did for years but if you are honestly going to explore your own creativity and influences you need to get the hell out of dodge.
Two weeks ago I embarked on what can only be described as a new and emerging Love Affair. It's pretty torrid I have to say and it's with New Orleans. I've travelled all over the world and the only other places I had an immediate and passionate connection with were Paris (I swear I lived there in a former life), Key West (good god I love it there) and now New Orleans. I am firmly committed in my embracing of the WooWoo that I was a Southern Belle at some point in a past life (I don't know if I believe in such things but when I can't explain these deep rooted connections to strange places I feel this is but the best way to describe it). New Orleans is the nicest city I've been too ever in terms of people. Hell, the TSA agents were sweet as pie and oh so helpful - if that doesn't convince you well they also had the nicest drunk, homeless people who were all too happy to point you in the right direction (surprisingly accurate too considering the intoxication levels of a few).
Now I mentioned to you in a post last week about the converging of the gods and the stars aligning so that I found myself being introduced to Randy Jackson, Creative Director for the Amanda Stone Talley gallery via facebook at the precise moment that we were sitting & standing almost beside each other at the Ogden Museum for the Miles Redd talk right? We met the most amazing shopkeepers and design people strolling along Magazine street - the owner (I think) of Malachite offered to drive my friend Lori and I down the street to a bakery when we inquired if there was anywhere to grab a bite. Amanda Stone Talley herself offered to drive us to dinner after giving us a tour of her studio/home and gallery. I mean WHO ARE THESE PEOPLE????
Literally, these folks would have given you the shirts off of their backs if we'd asked. Such soul and taste - good sweet LAWD the whole place just oozes personality, charm and charisma even some of the less groomed areas. Here's a taste...