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Monthly Archives: March 2012
Words can’t describe what it felt like to receive this letter in the mail this past week. I’ve carried it around with me and read it numerous times… I’m kind of in shock… So I’ll let the letter speak for itself…
March 21, 2012
It is my great pleasure to inform you that you have been nominated for the third Contemporary Northwest Art Awards (CNAA) exhibition at the Portland Art Museum. Your name was forwarded to us by a regional curator, dealer, artist, critic or other arts professional on the basis of the quality of your work, your innovation and skill, relevance to community or global issues in the arts today, continuity of vision, commitment to your practice, and level of development in your career. Congratulations!
The Contemporary Northwest Art Awards 2013 will recognize three-to-five professional contemporary artists living and working in the Northwest (defined by the Museum as Oregon, Washington, Idaho, Montana, and Wyoming) in a scholarly and in-depth manner. Honoring artistic merit and recognizing potential, the Awards are presented to both emerging and established artists. Recipients are honored with an exhibition in the Museum’s special exhibition galleries, a full color catalog mailed to an extensive national mailing list, related museum programming, and a modest cash honorarium. Each of the three to five artists selected will receive a $1,500 honorarium and one artist will be chosen by the Museum’s curators and executive director to receive the $10,000 Arlene Schnitzer Prize. The Contemporary Northwest Art Awards exhibition is scheduled to open to the public in late September 2013.
A Curatorial Advisor, Ms. Apsara DiQuinzio, Assistant Curator of Painting at at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and I will be reviewing the list of nominees to select a group of finalists. I then will be looking at finalists web sites and visiting studios first-hand, when possible, to narrow down the list. Once the review is complete, award recipients will be announced leaving nearly a year to prepare for the exhibition….
Congratulations once again! We are greatly looking forward to reviewing your work.
Sincerely, Bonnie Laing-Malcolmson
The Arlene and Harold Schnitzer
Curator of Northwest Art
Portland Art Museum…”
With the hike ahead and a website that doesn’t look so hot, I’m not sure I’m going to accept the nomination. It’s incredible to be nominated, but I have a hike to focus on, and don’t need to be worrying about such things while I’m on the trail… With just a few days to make the decision before I set foot on the trail on April 6, I’m not sure what to do…. but I wanted to share this honor with you all, becuase it wouldn’t have happened without a fan base cheering my crazy ideas on…
Momentum… For me this word has many meanings, as a passing glimpse of something interesting will turn into an idea and gain momentum, normally until I see the next ‘shiny thing’ …. Today Momentum takes me in reverse as I ride the rails on my way to Portland, OR, catching new perspectives on a drive I’ve enjoyed a dozen or more times over. Deep in the Columbia River Gorge, in and out of tunnels that have only been seen from the hwy across the river, as I glance back to the point where ‘Momentum’ was first photographed. Nearly a year ago, at nearly this same point on the Columbia, I pulled my truck off the road, jumped out, camera in hand, strolled down over the RR tracks, and closer to the rivers shore. All of this to photograph a barge gliding down the river…. The eery darkness of an early spring day laiden damp with rain, I decided to grab the wedding gown on loan to me, and see what happened.
Fifteen minutes later, as the gown lay in a trash bag, wet and covered in the crud of the railroad, I scrolled through the handfull of photos I’d taken, disappointed in most, until the last shot appeared on that little camera screen… There it was. A photo that moved me with the realization that I wasn’t just going to run around in dresses making a fool of myself to make money for the PCT, (and get Ellen’s attention), I was doing so much more than that. … This photo was proof.
That moment also started hiking26 off with a deficit. There was no way that loaner wedding gown was going to be restored to it’s pristine white condition…. *Ring Ring* “Hello, Jazmine… this wedding gown… did you want to sell it? Because it fits me so good, and it’s so beautiful, I think I should buy it for future photo shoots…. “ At a discounted price of $450 paid over the following months, I soon owned the damaged gown, but it was worth every penny. The sad fact – It’s not going to do time on the PCT. Weighing in at nearly 11 lbs, it’s entirely too heavy for me to work with. So it sits on a rack at kayolas house, where it will watch, one by one, as the other gowns are folded, stuffed in a box, and sent westward. Eventually realizing it’s been abandoned.
But I’ll make it up to you ol’ girl…. You once graced the beautiful Barbie Doll-esque Jazmine, and made me a few bucks selling Momentum… I’m sure there’s more to come for you…
So here I am again, in the Gorge, on a train, my long-haul pack stowed below me, and Portland less than an hour away. There’s much for me to do there, catching up on gear lists and organizing notes, and filling you, the fans, in with so much information I should have long ago filled you in on. My creative mind always has me distracted, though, and up until now there’s been one more thing to do here and there with the gowns, my gear, or the simple fact that friends need my attention too…
It’s about time…. April 6 is just over a week away. I can let go of all that’s been dragging me down and stressing me out, and enjoy hiking26 for what it is… but these next few days, in Portland, San Francisco, and all the train time in between, will hopefully help calm my overactive mind…
Oh, and one more thing… the friendly couple across the aisle from me inquired about my backpack. Once I in formed them of all that is hiking26, they reached across the aisle with a $20 bill. Kindness and generosity abound, and I’m so lucky to have an audience to watch as I take on entertainment as i never imagined I would…
It’s been an interesting few weeks preparing to leave home… home being Newport, as I haven’t felt like I have had a home since I left the cabin December 1. There have been a lot of things I’ve learned about myself in this process, most of which I would never want to blog about, or it could make me feel weaker than I already am. Once I’m on the trail and won’t be spending much time reading comments, thus less concerned about what people have to say about me – so you may just hear all about what I’ve been going through and putting myself through. The generosity of many has turned into a level of obligation that I find nearly impossible to handle when I’m interrupted … I operate differently than most. Although people reply that ‘everyone goes through that’, I’m not everyone… if I was, I wouldn’t be doing a hike in wedding gowns.
But enough of all of this whining. I’ve been so engulfed in last minute preparations (I operate best under pressure, but an extreme level of anxiety complicates it all) I haven’t had time to worry about the hike. This is a great thing. I’ve been rather disconnected from even the fact that I’m leaving my friends and town behind. It will surely take a few days to notice that life is infinitely different than I’ve ever experienced. An entire year or more of preparations have led me to these final moments, goodbyes, and an overloaded backpack that will be my home for six months.
That’s all i have for now, as my friends Kayola Jason, Kaylia, and Jalin are all waiting for me. They’ve all decided to stay up past their bed times to drive me to the train station at midnight. My train leaves at 2 a.m. and they don’t want me stuck sitting there in the middle of the night. I’ve been living with them for a few days, and have turned their basement into an ever rotating mess of piles. But it’s done now. My pack, My small duffel, and a small backpack carrying my paperwork, cameras, and netbook, so I can work on updating you all a bit more before I head out on the trail.
I’ve received some wonderful last minute donations from family and friends, all of which help a great deal… I ended up having to rent an additional storage unit at the last minute which involves an extra monthly bill, and I’ve purchased a tiny netbook to bounce from resupply town to resupply town so I can personally update you with photos and videos as I can. That will cost additional money to mail forward 26 times…. The expenses in the past weeks have skyrocketed, but there’s enough money to get a good start at this. I just hope T shirt sales continue, as they’ve died off since last fall…
Here’s to making an amazing adventure a reality. You’re all so wonderful for helping me out with this, and I can’t wait to share with you all the great moments ahead….
Off to Portland for a few days, then head south on Monday the 1st of April – brief layover in San Francisco, and then meet my folks in San diego on Wed the 3rd to spend a day with them…
Until next time… hiking26 is here y’all !!!
Because I haven’t always felt I have enough to say to fill a blog post, I have kept up basic blithering on the hiking26 Facebook page. I know not all of you are on FB, but for those that are and didn’t know about the page, you can find it here
But don’t worry, once I begin the hike on April 6, 2012, I’ll be keeping all blog posts current (as often as I can upload them) HERE on the hiking26 website.
Thanks for keeping up with me ! This is all happening because of YOUR support.
In the past months I’ve been picking up food here and there to stick in with the gowns. I’m shipping them all ‘Regional Rate – Flat Rate Priority’ Which means I ordered boxes that are a bit smaller than the sizes available at the Post Office (although I did still get them from the P.O. although they were delivered to the barn. Since I’m shipping gowns from Eastern WA to the trail, I can save money due to closer zoning, than if I just ship regular flat rate boxes. Confused? So was I.
As you likely know the flat rate boxes, in this case, allow up to 20 lbs per box. Since the gowns weigh a quarter of that, I figured I would throw in some food as well since it wouldn’t cost any more to ship. My parents and sister are doing most of my food drops, and I thought this would be easy for them. WOW was I wrong. I’ve re-packaged everything into lighter and less bulky ziplock bags. Then I have to figure 5000 calories a day, and try to keep the weight around 2 lbs per day. My first attempt last week went all wrong, but I was just going to deal with it. My average weight was a minimum of 3 lbs of food / day. Since my parents have officially decided that they’re flying down to see me off at the trail head, I told them I would be sure to ship the first 3 full food resupply boxes so they wouldn’t have to worry about getting back and figuring out the same mess I’m trying to…. ARGH !!!
After working up all of this food, I was ever so delighted to receive a box of dehydrated home-made food and snacks from a PCT secion-hiker, Janet Ake, of Arkansas. She gave me her old tent a while back as a spare… It’s much larger than mine and I love it, but it weighs twice as much. So after I get used to the trail a bit, I may just switch up to the larger tent. The food and fruit leather she has sent looks scrumptious, and it’s a far cry from the low budget, lazy food that I’m throwing together. The generosity of everyone astounds me, I’m one hell of a lucky guy.
Well, in the midst of wrapping things up at the barn, so i can officially depart on Thursday, March 22, (bound for Montana, then back, park my truck in Newport, then take a train down to Portland for a few days, where I’ll then depart around April 2 for San Diego …. ) I read that one of the hikers is dividing his food into daily gallon zip-lock bags of everything he’ll need each day. This is a brilliant plan. He’s doing it because he doesn’t trust himself to eat all of the goodies at the beginning of his trip out of the resupply town, and leave the less desirable food for last. I would surely do the same. So for the last 4 hours I’ve been dumping out the boxes and reworking the food resupply just the same. What’s wonderful – I’m ending up with far less weight. I’m not sure where I went wrong, but I’m happy to drop some weight in my pack, and have extra food to send to my folks to pack up for me.
Information overload? probably. I’ve been so distracted with last minute prep, that I haven’t kept up to date.
That’s it for today…. Thanks for keeping tabs on me… I can’t believe the hike is so close to happening… =-P