Jes Lee

Get to it











Yesterday felt like a giant roller coaster ride.

I was awake quite early to head to the library for my volunteer shift.  2014-01-21 09.08.58

It felt so great being back, seeing the broad range of books that come through the preservation department.

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I got quite far on the books I am working on re-binding and re-covering. They will be so lovely when they are all done! I have a wonderful supervisor at the library, and we spent three hours chatting about books and photography and cameras.

Later in the day, I received a rejection email about a job I had been really hoping would work out. That news, I admit, led to a pity-party-for-one. Of course John took me out for dinner and a beer at my favorite pub, and things looked up for a bit.

At the end of an emotionally exhausting day, I began chiding myself, that I have had all this time at home to work on my artwork, and yet I have been hardly making anything. After recently talking to another dear artist friend who had a similar experience (finding herself without a day job for a while, not making any new work during that time off, and now longing for that free time again to make more art) I was determined that would not be my experience. I started today determined to create something….anything.

Fueled by one more cup of coffee than normal (yes, I actually made myself a cup of coffee in my automatic coffee maker just to be able to function and brew my normal French Press pot of coffee this morning…) I was off to a great start today. After finishing three photo jobs, uploading loads of photo work for MCBA, I figured it was time to get off the couch and be creative.

While eating a quick lunch, I began organizing the folders on my laptop’s desktop. You know when you have so many icons on the desktop that creating a new one just layers that new icon on top of an old one, but you don’t realize it, and soon you have a stack of icons that is at least ten icons high? That had happened some time, and about 20 new folders ago. As I was organizing, I created a folder of film scans that needed to be cropped and processed and posted on Flickr and my blog….and that folder was full! What I realized then that I have done during my time here is not giving myself enough credit. No, I have not created a new book, or a new photo box, or finished all of those applications for solo shows I have put off. But I have taken photos. I have taken a lot of photos…a lot more than I was taking last year at this time. And that is creating something. No, I haven’t printed any yet, but I did just last week get my new darkroom set up so I can print some now. And I did write out a statement and description for a new photo box project I would like to create. And that is something too.

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So, instead of kicking myself for not making a new book or a new print or a new photo box or anything else like that yet, I’m going to celebrate the fact that I have gotten back in with my cameras, and my film, and am working at starting to figure me out, and start something new. Healing takes a lot of work and energy, and I have a bit of that to do yet as well. And instead of rambling anymore about all of this, I’m going to head down to my darkroom, and develop the three rolls of film that are waiting for me.