England is a no go… (sad face)
The university was unprepared to assist me with help sponsoring my visa, and I could not put the funds together in time to leave for an extended period.
On the plus side, they have offered to leave it open for me to attend next year!
This now gives me time to fund raise, find a flat and really branch out to set up some connections. (**fingers crossed**)
With my ideas of moving to England derailed for the time, I had to make sure I kept moving forward.
September 17th I embarked on a 9 hour journey to Southern Illinois University Carbondale for their annual SIMS (Southern Illinois Metalsmiths Society) conference. Packed full of metalsmiths, a live auction with donations from local, student, faculty, and professional artists. Guest artist Fred Crist also have some amazing demonstrations.
In October, I made my way back south, this time to Memphis, TN to the Metal Museum. This was my first time at the Metal Museum. This past year, I was one of four(4) finalists for their Blacksmith Apprenticeship position. Even though I was not what they were looking for, I wanted to help out with their Repair Days and put some faces to the names I had spoken with. This trip was so cool in so many ways. Not only did I get to hang out with Southern Illinois University Grad students again (SIUC and the Metal Museum are only 4 hours away from each other), but I made so many new friends most of which had only taken 1 metals class before. It was great to talk to everyone and let the passion we all have for metalsmithing break free for a bit.
On this adventure, I met students and young professionals, among them the amazing Sarah Rachel Brown, and Addison De Lisle; who are gearing up for some of their own incredible adventures this year; make sure to check them out if you have the chance (links attached to their names).
With this amazing weekend in Memphis coming to close, I got back in my car and prepared myself for the 9 hour trek back to Ohio. Stopping in Nashville, TN on the way to see my good friend Nicole. It had been years since we had seen each other, and of course, as soon as I walked in, it was like no time had passed at all.
***spoiler alert: I just found out that Nicole and her then boyfriend Luke, are now engaged and getting married in August 2014 – Guess who was asked to make their wedding bands?!?***
Things seemed pretty slow this November. I was not going on any crazy adventure, or working on any major projects. This month was spent looking up different residencies, shows, and other opportunity deadlines. Lets see what comes of it shall we?
To top it off, work was beginning to really take its toll on me. I was getting ready to step down just to get away from it all, until my boss quit, and my cousin and I took over… hello long hours.
Thanksgiving was delicious as ever with the best company and family in the world. 🙂
In December, I traveled to Chicago for an interview with Life Time Fitness for a possible transfer and promotion. The interview went very well.
While visiting I also met up with my mentor Brigitte Martin. We spent all morning at Lillstreet Art Center where we got a full tour by Pam Robinson. Lillstreet was pretty incredible. Not only did the building go on for what seemed like miles, but the work and atmosphere was inspiring as well. I hope to visit again sometime soon.
I was only in Chicago for a few days, but special thank you to Alisha Kurtz for putting me up while I was in town.
Christmas this year was wonderful. I got mom a new Bike, and she got me 32′ Flat screen TV!
Well folks, I think this about wraps up the Fall and Holidays of 2013.
Next up: New Year/New Drive – 2014, and Winter Vortex
Until next time, take care.
-Meredith S. Tibjash