While I listen to Berlioz's La Damnation de Faust, I sit and stare out the window at the waving trees against the light gray of the sky realizing how I love the constant changing of weather from day to day. Am not a big opera buff either but decided to explore more of this expression while working in the studio and around the house. (I also picked up Verdi's Otello) but now as I observe the outside, I think about what I have done here since my move to Anchorage ten years ago. Here are just a few things worth mentioning in no specific order:
1 - My dog Blue, who is a 130 pound Newfoundland lies asleep by the door. She has been around our home for close to seven years. During that time, I have learned how to groom her, clip her gigantic nails and pay attention to her delicate health of fragile limbs and allergic ears. We manage to take walks through the grasses and down to the creek where she loves to cool her paws.
2 - I have learned how to handle a mountain bike and roam the hillsides of Anchorage with fellow bikers. This group dynamic has challenged a different entourage in my life and tested my ability to see people from other parts of the town. Learning to bike on a treacherous terrain too goes with part of the cyclist journey; long winding bumpy grounds sometimes laced with roots, rocks and an odd assemblage of growth can spin you into the air over the handlebars if you are not careful.
3 - I have been able to teach art appreciation and drawing classes at the University of Alaska; being immersed in a learning environment has helped me grow to know more about the art that I do, why I do it, what it really is, and expand this knowledge to the community.
4 - My studio is behind my house and every day I take a short walk behind my home and climb the steps to my sacred place. Never have I had this luxury in the past. The time I can spend on my work has been fruitful, long, thoughtfull periods mixed with unproductive spans of creative blocks while some of it has been ground breaking and other times monotonous. Living here in Anchorage has given me a different perspective of place in contrast to a large city. Big city pretentiousness has begun to peel off of my shoulders little by little.
5 - (Need I mention the incredible setting and nature parts that surrounds my periphery while I drive to places around town and can visit on a daily basis?)
6 - Being able to travel and see parts of the world has advanced my artistic persona. My partner of ten years is a great companion; we have reinvented our home, our lives to fit a fulfilling existence while I envision more adventure ahead.
P.S. - Days ago I was battling with the half full/half empty dilemma. Today, I am in the full mode and recognize how quickly the contents can drain from the glass. Saying that, I feel that I lifted the jinx and can exclaim good times!
Nicole Ruggiero: Our Devices, Ourselves
1 day ago