The Invites arrived, the paintings and lino prints sorted and framing was done and the big day arrived.
We loaded the car at the crack of dawn as of course Wild Canary is miles away and so to make the 8 am hanging time we had to leave when even the sparrows are sleepy.
I expected it would be a big day but nothing quite prepared me for the nerves and the expectation. It was amazing seeing the car so full and it had been such a huge push to get it all together because everyone knows that no matter how organised you are as a big event draws closer you realize you should have been doing a million other things and there is a mad rush to pull it all together. So I was tired and excited and nervous all rolled into one slightly hyperactive bundle.
The sight of arriving and seeing the exhibition poster was honestly one of the most exciting moments I have had in a very long time.
Wild Canary couldn't have been more helpful and encouraging, and their enthusiasm and support made me a tad teary on several occasions I must admit which I totally blame on being sleep deprived rather than just being a sook. Sorting the paintings out, hanging and getting it all set up took no time, and on seeing them all hung I must admit I burst into tears in a very public and embarrassing way. I was completely unprepared for the emotional impact of standing in each of the rooms surrounded by the paintings and lino prints of the last 12 months. I honestly thought I would be a bit excited and proud while managing to be cool about it, but the enormity of it was overwhelming and cool went out the window. It might not have been so bad if I was a pretty crier, but I was a bit of a sobbing mess who immediately got a runny nose and bloodshot eyes. It was unexpectedly intense, but joyful and wonderful except for the snotty nose bit.
So the exhibition is open. As I write this there are people sitting down to amazing meals and my work is on the walls. the opening event is on Saturday and then they will be available to buy, and the nerves are ramping up a bit I must admit, but it is done and they are there. I have pushed myself forward at a time when every instinct was telling me to hide away and it feels very empowering to do it as uncomfortable and stressful it was. I feel such pride, satisfaction, and intense humility at the support that made it possible. In short hanging day was one of the most wonderful days I can remember .