Wow. Just wow. I was able to spend most of the month of May at a most beautiful location in Johnson Vermont, the Vermont Studio Center.
It is hard to know where to begin. I have been to other residencies (Virginia Center for the Creative Arts – AKA VCCA and Wildacres in the mountains of North Carolina), but VSC is, well, first of all it is in VERMONT!! And that meant I got to experience another spring in VT after a spring in NC! And second of all, I met all sorts of amazing creative artists (3D, 2D and writers and those dabbling in more than one of those media).
Third of all, and really the most important part, the shitty first draft of Chapter 4 was born. This was a bit of a phew because when I got there I had more letters back and forth between Louise and Thornton Wilder than I thought. Hundreds. Thousands of images that I took at the Beinecke in May of 2016 (while I was on sabbatical) and then later in November of 2016 (because there were more than I expected and I ran out of time and had to go back). Both of those trips were funded by the Faculty First Grant at UNCG (THANK YOU!). But I digress.
So it took me OVER TWO WEEKS to read the rest of these letters (I had started reading last June, but, well, the sabbatical ended and then I had a slight issue with the EHD with all of my images – there will be a whole ‘nother post about THAT). But finally the narrative arc of the chapter emerged out of the miasma of my brain, mostly based on the arc of this correspondence. It really is a luxury to have both sides of the conversation. There are some places in the Nadia chapter where that luxury also exists, but this is really almost all of the correspondence between TW and LT. They were even thinking of publishing it, so Louise had added footnotes to Thorny’s letters when she thought there might be confusion about what he was referring to. But, once again, I digress. Isn’t that what blogs are for, though?
Anyway, I am still processing the experience of VSC and will post more about it once I can find the time to do so.
I will, however, post my studio shot (see above fancy B&W, thank you, Howard Romero, and a couple of colored versions below) because, it contains many important elements of my residency. The river which I heard each day, which sang outside my studio window without ceasing, inspiring focus at times and delightful distractions at others, which went up and down depending on how much rain we got (LOTS of rain), the bridge we all walked back and forth across daily, hourly (I miss that river and that bridge), the LT program in my hands (from 2015 at UNCG), my VSC mug which takes me back, and the Maverick writers studio building in the background where all happened.
And a little more pensive…I tell you, that river could bring it on…
P.S. This post is just now going out because I got distracted. More photos later when I find time…so many beautiful spring flowers!
Wait, one more: here we all are, VSC, May 2017 (photo by Howard Romero)