portland art&soul: a collection of moments

Oct 8, 2007 | Entrepreneurship, Life in Progress

it’s been a life-filled several days. grab a cup a tea and read on…it’s gonna be a long one. i have so much to share.

i’ve always been hopeful and optimistic (and a bit serious), but i don’t believe i’ve ever felt so emotional as i have these last couple of years. i find myself in everyday moments, everyday conversations, easily brought to tears by what i’m learning in that very second. it’s all overwhelmingly good and it means that i should carry some tissue with me more often than i do.

liz, judy, tonia, diane : having wine after class with these women was a highlight of my week. we sat there for hours)
there were several of these seemingly small, but meaningful moments the last few days while i was in portland. like when judy, liz, and I were having a conversation about really taking ownership of our work and all that is good in our lives. i had a moment when i realized that i’ve been putting pressure on myself to explain why good things are happening to me, wanting to figure it out, to explain it to myself. as a result, i feel a teeny amount of guilt/awkwardness/embarrassment when it all comes up in conversation with other people because it feels unresolved in my heart – why am i having such good fortune? am i a fraud? do i deserve it? what i realized in that moment, sitting at that table, with two very dear souls and with salty tears stinging my eyeballs was this: by trying to explain the mystery of all the goodness to myself, i’ve been depleting the joy out of the process. this was huge for me. i am learning to simply sit with all the joy/good fortune/luck/hard work and not dilute its meaning by analyzing, defending, or trying to explain it away to anyone, especially myself. i didn’t realize i was carrying this burden until this conversation. it was an aha moment. since that conversation, the burden and pressure have been released. thank you, world. from now on, i intend to OWN MY JOY.

nina, liz, misty : at vendor nite. such fun. i love nina’s face in this photo.)
another moment that found my emotion this week: when i realized how gracious, and generous, and loving misty is. i was left wordless (which is very unusual) by her gift and by her spirit. she is an art friend of mind that i am getting to know more and more. the more i know, the more i adore. that’s all i’m going to say about it. the rest is sweetly tucked in my memory and heart.

i took nina’s class on the first day. can’t wait to show you what i made…class photos soon.
(my bff gina and her son ian. we were able to spend some time together on this trip and talk how bffs do. i have missed her and it was awesome to watch ian. he’s so cute!)

more emotion: when i was sitting in the third wooden pew in a beautiful presbyterian church in downtown portland, watching and listening as my bff gina became ordained. her spiritual journey has been riddled with uncertainly, ups, downs, lots of questions, and challenges, but through it all she has remained true to herself and to her unique and loving beliefs. it was an incredibly proud moment for me as i watched a gentle and soulful woman named esther speak about gina and all about who she is and how she has such meaning to those who know her. i was bawling my eyes out, sitting in that church, with pride.
(me, and lisa with our late nite mexican meal. lisa is hilarious, upbeat, sincere, talented, and i’m lucky to have known her all of these years)

i loved seeing my portland peeps. there were dinners, classes, wine, margaritas, slumber parties, falling asleep while talking, laughter in between moments of connection, laughing in my sleep. i miss my girlfriends and being around them remind me of who i am and who i want to surround myself with.
(me with portland pals sarah & lisa on vendor nite. i’m not really tall (5’2″), but these girlies are tiny (and beautiful))

(roxanna at our favorite coffee spot in irvington, just down the road from my b&b).

i am sinking deeper into my art friendships. they are growing in meaning, and i’m loving this part of it. i had wonderful meals & conversations with many lovely women, all who are talented and inspirational and wise. it’s nice to be in the beginnings of a growing community, even when it feels hard (as i explained in an earlier post).
(notice all the wine glasses. my oh my. this is carla, judy, and stephanie lee. i can’t believe this is the only photo i got of stephanie. we spent a couple of meals this trip chatting. everyone knows i think she’s the bees knees. )

(tonia, my first editor. adore her.)
thank you, to everyone who came by to say hello on vendor nite. it was so, so cool to meet so many bloggers and other makers of things. it was a highlight, that evening, with all the bubbly energy and gladness. my cheeks hurt by the end of it. thank you, thank you. liz came down from tacoma to join in all the fun for a couple of days and that was SO fun. she is hilarious, and like always, we could talk forever, the two of us, just going and going and going….

i haven’t even talked about my classes yet. yes, my classes. i took a nina class and a stephanie lee class, both wonderful and like nothing i’ve ever taken before. photos of finished projects coming soon…

i so loved this trip. it felt like a vacation. i am home now, feeling rejuvenated, light, and ready to tackle my life. more soon. more photos here.

ps – all etsy/private orders will be shipped out tomorrow…

Sending much love,

Show/Hide Comments (21 comments)
  1. Sam I Am

    What Great Shots!!!! Portland was FANTASTIC!!! What wonderful memories we shall carry with us forever 🙂

  2. Colorsonmymind

    The photo with Nina and Misty made me cry-with your words it brought such joy to my heart.

    Misty has been such an angel to me through my creative journey. I just love her.

    I am super excited for artfest now:)

    A bit nervous but thrilled to meet so many lovelies.

    You are gorgeous and talented and I am so happy to hear you have claimed your joy.

    with love

  3. Tori

    You pinpointed something that I had never even thought about but have constantly been doing to myself- depleting my joy. Trying to analyze and explain everything. Thank you for opening my eyes to something that I clearly need to let go. Kelly- I really enjoy your blog and am inspired by your journey as an artist.

  4. Steph

    “Own my joy” – I love it! That’s very powerful.

  5. misty

    i am just wondering how, how, how? did you fit all of that into one week? It sounds like it was filled to the brim with everything you wanted it to be and much more.
    i am still trying to find the words to write about my time spent with so many wonderful people. how bittersweet it is to be back home.
    it was nice getting a few moments to laugh with you and liz after the craziness of vendor night, next time let’s make sure we get that dinner or glass of wine in.
    thank you for your kindness and loving words. xoxox

  6. Julie H

    Kelly I am so happy for you, it is so precious to connect with like minded friends. Thank you so much for sharing this part of your journey.

  7. nina

    sweet, sweet kelly rae. wasn’t it all over way way too soon?
    i wish we could replay the whole thing, and add another couple of days (without work, lol)…
    thanks so much for the help – the kind words – the input – and for your openness. how nice it was to see and be with you again….x

  8. Kelly @ Kel's Space

    Thank you Kelly for once again putting into words what is in my mind and in my heart: “and not dilute its meaning by analyzing, defending, or trying to explain it away to anyone, especially myself” Yes! Yes! Yes!

  9. Dawn Sellers

    It was wonderful to meet you Kelly. Glad to hear you had such a great time in Portland and I hope to meet up with you again sometime.

  10. matirose

    i love what you realized about owning your joy. yes! you inspire me kelly.
    also, so psyched you got to meet MY bff!

  11. vintagecollage

    So glad you had your aha moment…you deserve everything that has and is coming your way. Trips home should bring out the best in us and yours certainly did. Debbie

  12. adrienne

    So glad you had a great time! I remember all those feelings at my first A&S in Hampton this year, can’t wait for 08. Thanks for sharing your adventures!

  13. Kirsten Michelle

    so much goodness here, my lovely 😉
    i find i’m easily brought to tears myself these last few years…i get these waves of emotion that just wash right over me…moments of realization, acceptance, understanding and truth…tiny little breakthroughs on this path of self-discovery.
    looking forward to seeing your finished projects!!!

  14. Deryn Mentock

    Kelly Rae, it was lovely to meet you at A&S. Any friend of DJ’s is a friend of mine! I admire your beautiful work and look forward to getting to know you more! Wasn’t it an incredible journey?!

  15. Tonia

    I really had just the best time with you and Liz and Judy and Stephanie. Thanks for the photos and for the smile I’ll be wearing all week–it was so wonderful to share in what we did. xo, T

  16. Ro Bruhn

    What a wonderful time was had by all by the sounds of things. Can’t wait to see what you all created, so much talent in the one place.

  17. Stephanie Lee

    I LOVE Judy’s comment (hi judy!!) 🙂 and “ditto” it!

    Just so the world knows, not ONE of those wine glasses was mine!! Well, that’s a lie….ONE of them is and it only ever had water in it. I’m not the party animal, let me tell you. I’m the crasher…the fuddy, non-drinking, bad haired, lazy dresser crasher. 🙂 Darn…maybe if I’d had something other than water I could blame my chattiness on that!

    It was wonderful to hang out with you. Wonderful! Thank you for the time!

  18. Judy Wise

    It was heaven in the doing and heaven in the remembering. Thank you for the wonderful photographs and loving words. You are a treasure.

  19. * mY fRiEnDs cALL mE Rella *

    Welcome home, Kelly!! I look forward to seeing what pieces come from your time with kindred spirits.

    xo Rella

  20. Sharon

    Thank you Kelly, I just knew you would give a good run down of the fun. Someday, we will meet.
    Anxious to see your workshop pieces.


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I’m Kelly Rae Roberts

Before I picked up my first paintbrush at the age of 30, I was a medical social worker. I followed my creative whispers, and today I’m an artist & Possibilitarian. I’m passionate about creating meaningful art and experiences that awaken and inspire our spirits.

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