Day 22: Proud of

I posted this project on day one of #MarchMeetTheMaker for “favorite to make,” but I’m sharing it again today for the “proud of” prompt. Paducah has a wonderful non-profit art center called the Yeiser Art Center (@yeiserartcenter) that supports local and regional artists, has great programs for the community, and also has some amazing international juried exhibitions. I’ve been a member off and on throughout the 15 years that I’ve been in Paducah. Each year they have a members show where anyone who is a member can show a few pieces of art. I’ve never participated in it before, but in January of this year the director of the Yeiser, @lexieabra, encouraged me to enter and I did at the very last possible minute.
I have a hard time entering local shows, because I kind of feel like I have saturated the market in Paducah. It’s a small town with a small – but fantastic – community of artists, and I have my work in two places in the downtown/lowertown area year round and also do several pop up markets throughout the year. I worry about overexposure. So sometimes I refrain from participating in extra shows. But with Lexie’s encouragement, I entered my #365accordionproject sketchbooks.
I didn’t even know there was judging and prizes for the show, and I missed the opening reception, so I was quite surprised the next day when several people congratulated me on winning best of show! And on top of that, it came with a cash prize!
This is a tough piece to know what to do with, because it’s difficult to display – it can’t hang on the wall unless I build custom shelves to display it on. It’s been a great source of individual elements to pull out and make into prints and products, but I can’t imagine that anyone will buy it. So this unexpected win was amazing and I’m very proud of myself for creating this project, deciding to show it, and winning best of show!

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