Purgatory Between Two Lives.

I’m at the Edmonton airport right now on a layover between Montreal and Regina, it feels a lot like purgatory.

Airports remind me of the internet, almost place-less and glass tiled and filled with light and sort of freakishly open in some places but packed in others, so many different kinds of people and things inside, but themselves just feeling like framework to hold.

I have a pound of smoked meat in my carry on bag for my mom because she likes it so much, I declared it at the baggage check in just in case, and because I like saying it, “Meat. MEAT Meat Meat.”

I’m drinking a XL 4 hour old cold coffee. And I haven’t slept for more than 3 hours at once in over two days. Also, there are some ten year old girls hired to sing pop songs in the terminal? See, purgatory right? I’d for sure pack meat with me for purgatory, just in case, no access to flesh would really be the true torture.

I was so sad to leave MTL because everything is so sunny and all parks and all wine, all the time there right now. But, I said goodbye to a few of my closest friends for varying amounts of month long trips this week, so it seems like the right time to go.

I’m on route to the Queen City to work for/with Lisa, my boss lady/life partner who owns SEED Sustainable Style, for couple of weeks. She has designed/created her own collection for Saskatchewan Fashion Week (next week), and we’re also throwing what will be a super rad after party event called FORM at The Artful Dodger next Friday.

DIY hair dye. #glamor #gettingrunwayready

I’ll probably be the everywhere girl, which is how I often felt working for her for over two years before moving to Montreal, (and really like, variety!). Translating art vision speak into audience readable statements, social networking all over the place, preparing the clothes + anonymous tasks for the shows, modelling and performing for the shows + hopefully some photo shoots, and of course having soooooo much fun, and also drinking a lot of wine, hanging out with Liam (her unicorn greyhound) and wearing a lot of lipstick.

I’ve been feeling a little nervous about Regina itself because hometowns are dramatic. But, the closer I’m getting to actually being there, the more I’m looking forward to it and remembering the many things I love about the place (in contrast to all of the reasons why I left). To be honest though, now my number one concern over the next couple of weeks is who am I going to makeout with in my hometown?! Seriously. (male models hopefully?)

(another sad reason to leave MTL, flesh. FLESH Flesh Flesh. Wish I could have packed cuddles for purgatory. I’ve actually never been kissed in an airport so there’s a life goal.)

Oh well, only four more hours till I’m in the body of the beast. Raaawrr. ha.

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Lately – Mini, Medium & Mega Cities. Mhmmm.

Mini – I went home for the holidays. ‘Home’ is Regina Saskatchewan and the holidays were mostly giggle pile ups and lots of brunching after passing out in my winter jacket.

I did a performance with Fada Dance at the annual Xmas party as an innocent reindeer sacrificed by the three Christmas spirits to a pack of white wolves. I wore shoes on my hands and pranced, then the wolves came and devoured me (I had tinsel stuffed in my shirt as mock blood). I’ve joked with some friends that I really related to my character, ha! I’ve been dancing with Fada since I was 15 and have really missed the studio and the community since moving, so I loved that they asked me to be a part of the show.

Other highlights over the holidays include many blue (lipstick) new years eve kisses, and getting hit by a car while riding drunk in a shopping cart at 3am (because this is what we do for fun in cities without after hours parties, be warned).

Also! I got instagram! so that is major! add me. @moodynightshade
mostly I take pictures like this:

Medium – Montreal makes my heart swell!

Since the first night I got back to the city after Xmas I’ve felt like it is home to me. It’s like in first semester I was gathering all of these pieces and now they really feel like they’re coming together. Cheesy cliche I know but true, I love the community there!

In the past month I’ve made 3 films for school! Which was a huge learning curve because I’ve never done any video work before, and navigating the editing programs is like a hella brain ache. I have cried in the computer labs like at least 5 times. Sometimes due to life shit making me bawl-y emotional, sometimes cause I’d had to re-load all of my video files into the same project over 6 times and then it took 2 hours to render, just in time for my class critique and then it saved incorrectly and everything was lost all over again. whyy.

So I went to my critique crying with nothing to show. Thankfully my profs let me present the following week and gave me chocolate to cheer up. Harry Potter anyone?

This also means that I used a canon for the first time. Love at first focus!

Some friends from class and I got drunk with our profs. That was so art school sitcom I can’t even write about it here, but I will tell you that we inhaled all of the poutines.

Also, I’m taking a performance art class this semester! Which is exciting but so far has mostly just meant that on Tuesday mornings I watch videos of people mutilating their bodies and doing things naked for 4 hours. (I’m only sort of kidding)

*Side note/detour: Also, I’ve been especially depressed lately. And I’m only including this in my list of ‘Lately’ things because people keep asking me if I’m sad and it seems like they’re hoping I’ll say that I’m not. But I am, and I have been, and maybe I always will be in many ways, and I think that’s okay! Sadness happens, as does happiness, as do many tangled emotions, all the time, everyday. One of my major (many) pet peeves with our culture is this idea that everyones supposed to be happy all of the time, and as if you can’t feel various emotions simultaneously. My depression exists in a constant state of flux, and it’s really important to me to acknowledge this so I can continue to get better at dealing with it. I have a history of childhood trauma, everyday regular life is traumatizing, these things aren’t going anywhere, so why ignore them any more or less than the rad stuff?*

Mega – Right now I’m in New York!
A super dreamy cafe in Brooklyn called the ‘Tea Lounge’ to be exact.
(it’s reading/anti student suicides week woooooooooo!)

My friend Simona and I caught the bus last Friday morning and we’re here till this Monday morning. I didn’t sleep on the Thursday night before we left. I also couldn’t wash the classic make out smeared, bright red lipstick off my face, so I went through the super dystopian US customs looking like a whore. Such a mess, Ha!

NY is so endless! like woah I can’t even grasp it. We’ve been staying with the loveliest couch surfers, mostly exploring as many areas as possible and gallery hopping by day, party perusing by night. Almost everyone is vegetarian and graffiti is king.

Today I went to the Brooklyn Museum, this is me and Judy Chicago’s The Dinner Party:

I’ll post more about the projects I’ve been working on & this trip soon! I ❤ NYC Mhmmm

Take Back the City – It Will Be Ok

Guardian Moose at Slow Pub.

Take back the city, part three… continued…

Alleyway art in the Cathedral.

-I sent in my applications to the Fine Arts programs at NSCAD in Halifax, and Concordia in Montreal! Exciting! They of course had to be (expensively) UPS’d there so they’d arrive overnight due to stupid procrastination and a near death wrestling match with technology that I should really be familiar with by now in my internet age adolescence. I wont hear back for a couple of months, but I should be hearing back from Emily Carr any day now!

So between that and waiting for 3 years worth of tax returns+GST cheques,
I’ve been totally stalking my mailbox.

-Since this city is severely lacking in specialty thrift and vintage stores, I decided to gather together some friends who are all collectors of such things and had a two day sale at the Creative City Center. We had a really good turn out and it was so much fun. The weekend had me day dreaming of living in studio apartments and sharing warehouse spaces with other artists (not like these aren’t things I dream of anyways).

So, we’ve been talking about making it a regular thing, since we’ll be collecting (saving) these precious things regardless, (and it’s questionable whether Regina has the population to sustain a full time store) having a pop up shop just makes sense. We haven’t discussed details (like coming up with a name) yet but I’ll write about them when they’re happening.

We also climbed out onto the CCC roof, which has the most incredible view of the city… but those photos deserve their own blog post.

-The city seems to be bursting with events and shows and creative synergy.

This week alone I went to Combat Improv, Caracol at the Exchange, dance party mayhem at O’Hanlons, the UofR BFA opening reception at the Mackenzie Art Gallery, John Vaughn’s closing reception and sound art performance (literally mind exploding) at RobBos Art Project Gallery, Divas at the Owl, the dance party aftermath of Combat Dance presented by Fada at the Artesian, dance-aholic-a-thon at the gay bar and ‘Carnage’ at the RPL. Like so many incredible things and places and people.

It’s funny how having lived here my whole life it can often feel like I’ve met everyone I can possibly meet in Regina, and then all of a sudden, I’m meeting all of these new people at once. People who like to do the same things and go to the same kinds of events that I do and I think, ‘like how have I never met you before? Have you been here all along and I just never noticed?’

I recently had an art therapy session where something we discussed was my obsession with leaving the city, moving away, travelling, and how that has yet to happen. I’ve had it in my brain since I as a kid that as soon as I could, I would move far far away. Since graduating highschool however, I’ve discovered various obstacles and personal realisatons that I think I needed to face and overcome before I could ever be ready to leave, like living on my own and establishing commited art practices.

In that time I also discovered a great love for Regina, and a great love for the “art scene” I grew up in. One which I took advantage of until taking a step back and realizing how incredible it really is(although not without some setbacks). In my dark depressed days of winter however, (regardless of mild weather) I got so lost in this feeling of “I shouldn’t be here” and hating on myself because I am. (this emotional state is particularly dismal for creativity) It was only after listening to this feeling, and realizing, that I’m (still) here for a reason, and more importantly, that my life here is worth while and beautiful and interesting, that it seems the whole city is responding to me (or I’m responding to it?).

My therapist, Karen, said that I would never be truely happy here, to be in the moment and to appreciate my life for what it is when/if I was constantly fixated on leaving. She said that once I put a rest to those feelings for now, and was present for my experiences, then the oportunities, and the luck would come, and they are. It’s a difficult concept, to put your desires aside and trust things happen the way they’re supposed to, but it seems to be working. So I’m taking back the city (into my heart).

Alley way art Downtown.