After months of planning and careful painting, I am so excited to share a preview of “Homecoming.” This new series is a celebration of the PNW’s natural beauty, and my own personal journey of learning to call somewhere “home.” Today I’ll share a couple personal anecdotes about why this collection was important for me to create, with the hope that it will resonate with you, too, on your own journey of what “home” means to you.
I’ve moved around a lot in my life, starting with 3 extended stays abroad while I was in college, and more recently, a two year stay in London. Moving around has always made me feel a bit like an outsider. While I absolutely loved my time in London, my husband and I had to leave due to visa complications. When it came time to search for a new home in 2016, it was my friend and photographer Nate Canada’s beautiful depictions of the Pacific Northwest that heavily influenced our decision to try out Seattle. Seattle wasn’t quite as grandeur as London, but it was incredibly livable compared to the UK capital. The tranquil allure of foggy mornings, Mount Rainier, and the wildlife-rich Puget Sound was a peaceful contrast to the intensely urban life we’d experienced before.
The idea of home, of course, is highly connected to where the people you love are located. There’s something deeper though that I experienced during the pandemic, and that is the essentialness of community and unity in transforming a place into “home.” There is the connection to physical place, but also a sense that you are playing a role in shaping that place to be better. It’s about finding or creating a close-knit community, and letting it be a symbiotic relationship: to call somewhere “home” is to not only experience a place, but to also let it change ***you***.
The Homecoming collection is symbolic of this shift for me: that home often has more to do with how we show up to our communities than it does with just a location.
Nate’s influential photography is the bedrock of this series. His ability to capture early morning and evening light in some of our most remote places brings out the beauty of the Pacific Northwest in a way that deeply resonates with me. Each painting in this series is an homage to living in one of the most beautiful places in the world (I truly believe this!).
I hope “Homecoming” inspires you to reflect on what community and home means to you.