goodbye 2009!

I hope everyone had happy holiday celebrations this past month with whatever traditions and beliefs you hold to your hearts. We have been pretty busy in my house creating new memories with a very excitable almost 3 year old who finally gets Christmas. I just turned 34 the day after Christmas too which was spent with my most favorite beings in the world, my husband, son and dog. I am excited to bring in this new year and am wondering what lies ahead for me and my family. One thing is for sure, and that is that this belly of mine is expanding at an alarming rate and a new little one will be joining my pack in less than 9 weeks. Lots of changes ahead…

paintings of 2009
1. rootedness, 2. woven_depths_of_the_earth, 3. all_things_seen_unseen, 4. we_are_all_connected, 5. where_memory_resides, 6. dream_totem, 7. transitions, 8. b3_4, 9. bk_sa_1_detail2, 10. the_seed_is_hope, 11. earth_sky_horizon, 12. beneath_the_prairie, 13. shewoke, 14. maybe home was always here, 15. bk_trees_4_detail, 16. learn_from_the_earth, 17. wings_of_the_wind, 18. heartland, 19. virtues_undiscovered, 20. bk_sa_4_wip, 21. lesson_plans, 22. patterns_and_cycles, 23. 133, 24. quiet_spirit_det, 25. origins_2_w

This is a flickr mosaic I made of 25 paintings/art pieces that I made this past year. I have to say that I am pretty proud of myself as I only get 1 full day of serious studio work a week and what else I get is squeezed in at nap times or nighttime if I am able to. I wish I had more time, but am always grateful for what I do get and what I do with it. Sometimes I dream about what I could do if I was able to go back to working in my studio full time…but I wouldn’t trade this time I have with my son. I only have this time with him once and I actually feel like he has opened the world up to me in so many different ways that in turn, informs my work.

Journaling about this art journey of mine has given me (among many other things) the ability to look back, celebrate my achievements, learn from my mistakes, make adjustments, and look forward to what’s ahead. I have done this for years in my personal written journals, and I have shared my end of the year art reflections on this blog in 2006, one for 2007, did one in 2008, and now for 2009.

This reflection has actually lifted me in that I can see that I actually created, grew in my work, and remained a bit active. I have gotten down a couple times this year with that feeling of not being able to “keep up” or frustrated that I am not able to pursue all that I would like to. But seeing this list here, has helped me to see that even if I don’t see it at times, I am doing the best I can and accomplishing a few things while I’m at it. I paint and create because I must. Finding the dedicated time and energy as well as balancing that with my family and pregnancy has been the challenge this year.

:: Took a handbuilding clay class to experiment with clay + encaustic. Figured out that as much as I would love to do this, I just do not have the time to invest on this path right now
:: Took 2 sewing classes to finally learn how to use my sewing machine and fell in love with sewing
:: Took an online workshop with Susan Tuttle to learn more about Photoshop

:: Exhibited in 5 group shows- 3 in Chicago, 1 in Venice, CA, 1 in Melbourne, FL
:: Had work included in an Art Auction in Missouri
:: Had work hanging at Sacred Art gallery in Chicago since March, and have sold work there consistently every month
:: Commissioned to create an encaustic painting and the image was licensed out for an album cover for NY musician James Shipp
:: Had one of my journals chosen for the Tyra Banks Show Luxe Living Giveaway with my journal and web site featured on her web site.

:: Created 48 pieces, including mixed media panels for journals, and 1 encaustic sculpture
:: Sold 41 pieces (including mixed media journals)
:: Participating in a challenging collaboration with Jen Worden and Seth Apter

In less quantifiable terms:
:: Still proving to myself that “where there’s a will, there’s a way”
:: Moving to painting larger paintings
:: Really delving more into my personal marks and symbols
:: Feeling like my work is growing, changing and really trying to push myself
:: Still learning to accept that I have time and energy limitations
:: Still learning to accept that my art will always be there for me, even if I cannot focus on it fully at this moment.


Just wanted to take this moment to thank everyone who comes to this little blog of mine with your advice, your support, and your friendship this past year. It means so much to me to be able to share my art/life journey with such wonderful people out there in the big, wide world. Wishing you all a happy, healthy, and creative 2010!

I am seeking, I am striving, I am in it with all my heart. ~ Van Gogh


  1. You had a busy 2009! Visited the journal site (Amano books) and loved the CD cover! Beautiful beyond words. Your plaster pages with wax (I think) are exciting. Is there a link to how to do this? So glad to visit your site and will link it to mine. – Jeanne in Oregon

  2. Looks like you’ve had a productive year. I’ve enjoyed reading your blog and having a look at your beautiful artwork.

    Hope your 2010 is wonderful. I wish the best for you and your family.

  3. Just stumbled upon your blog and I love your work! I am drawn to its quiet strength and many layers. I am in the same boat as you as far as being an artist as well as a mom to little ones (we are expecting our third in three weeks) and can really relate to what you are saying about wondering about what you could do as a “full-time” artist vs. cherishing these fleeting moments while the children are small. It seems you have struck a wonderful balance. Congrats and best wishes for 2010!

  4. Happy 2010! I’ve really enjoyed reading your blog and admiring your lovely art work since I stumbled on it recently. I just wish I could learn about encaustic art the way you do it here in the UK.

  5. I don’t always comment, but I always lust when I visit here. Your work just touches my heart & I am saving pennies for a piece of my very own. You are a rare and true artist. Happy happy 2010!

    🙂 Debi

  6. happy 2010 bridgette! what a year of adjustment and creativity. i love the way you have worked to embrace your surroundings and how the many layers of the city and the beauty of the praiie have been reflected in your work this year. you are an inspiration and i look forward to seeing what your neww little one inspires you to do…


  7. Dear Bridgette, I haven’t been following your blog long, only a couple of months, but I wanted to let you know how inspirational I find it and you. Reading this summary of your year has given me both hope and impetus for my own little practice. It is wonderful to see how the “time limited” still manage to create and establish a successful and worthwhile practice. Keep up the wonderful work and warm wishes for the new year. May you have every success and happiness, Amanda

  8. wow! seeing your work together like this, is just amazing – this is a work of art on its own – sounds to me like you had a fabulous 2009 and your 2010 is off to a terrific start – love from here, xxo

  9. All in one year!!! I am truly amazed and humbled. And pretty darned proud of you! Still wondering how you do it all…
    I love the Flickr Mosaic. Now I have to go there and figure out how to do one of those!

    Happy New Year!

  10. This post clearly demonstrates that your art is a true reflection of who you are inside. Simple yet complex, each layer well thought out. Best wishes for the new year.

  11. Thanks everyone for the new years wishes and kind comments about my work. I really appreciate it!

    happy new year to you too Alexi! If you have any questions, you can always shoot me an email bridgette AT

    Amanda- glad that my little spot here on the internet is inspirational! Thank you. That means a lot. I do feel that if you really, really want to create, you will find the time, even if it’s 10 minutes. Sometimes 10 minutes means the world!

    Thank you Mary- wishing you the very best in 2010. Thank you for your support and belief in my work!

    that’s the best compliment ever, thanks K!

    Thank you Gina- happy new year to you too! Hope your enjoyed your tamales. 🙂

    Thanks Paula, as always. If I didn’t create, I would be a mess… I try to squueze as much out as I can! You have to go to a special site to do the flickr mosaic. I will go look it up for you and email you.

    Thank you Curio, your comment means a lot. Best wishes to you too in 2010.

    Thanks Ophelia!

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