Exhale Gratitude

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“When Shadow Takes Flight” is my latest piece, created this morning. Yes, I have my comfy chair, my tea, my morning routine back. I have time and space to create again.

I am breathing deep and sinking in to a feeling of… What… Relief or peace or comfort, I’m not sure the exact word. But deep breaths are involved.

Our home is back. Our kitchen remodel is almost done. The last little bits are finishing up today. Last night we were able to cook dinner using both stove and oven, wash dishes in a kitchen sink and dishwasher. The first time for all of that in four, long months.

Such a wonderful, simple pleasure. One I’ve taken for granted in the past, considering it more chore than anything else.

And yet… I can’t help but think I’m a wimp, for finding the inconveniences we’ve borne the last few months as uncomfortable. The phrase “first world problem” comes to mind. I think of the people who deal with much, much less as a way of life. Hauling water and fuel just to subsist.

So my relief is also filled with thankfulness, understanding that what I am viewing as “normal” is really a blessing. That I have a house and a way of life which allows me time and space to create is something I don’t want to take for granted.

This morning, I am breathing contentment in deep, and exhaling gratitude.


P.S. There are still spaces available in Smartphone Art I at Sequoia Gallery in Hillsboro this Saturday! Get the details here.

Where are you?

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I read an interesting blog post from David duChemin over the weekend. One that resonated and made me think about what makes our style, our creative work, ours. And what makes it connect with others. (You can take a quick read here.)

I think it especially resonated because I spent part of the weekend talking to people about my work at the Local 14 show. Explaining my process, how I create it from a technical standpoint, just falls so flat. What I want to talk about is not how I create the work, but why. What it means to me. And I want to talk about what it means to you. Why does it resonate or connect. Why does it draw you in.

I believe when people respond to my artwork, it’s not for the technical execution. It’s not because there is perfect focus, or exposure, or composition. It’s because, deep down, it connects on the human level. It’s the me reaching out to talk to you. I believe people can see and sense honesty and emotion in art. I believe people respond to artwork created with passion.

Why do I keep coming back to the same themes, the similar compositions? Because they are part of who I am. They are a little piece of me, made manifest in the world. Not everyone will like my art, just like everyone isn’t going to like me as a person. But those who do? It’s a relationship that runs deep. Kindred spirits.

How about you? Where are you, in what you create? Are you showing up with your whole heart; is that passion coming through?

As David says in his blog post, what people want to see is more of you.

Come Visit Local 14

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I am in the Local 14 Art Show and Sale this weekend at the World Forestry Center in Portland, Oregon. If you are out and about, stop by and see my work!

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This show is comprised of some amazing women artists in all mediums from Oregon and the Pacific NW. Yesterday I was talking to a fiber artist who came all the way from Boise!

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It’s a perfect way to start your holiday shopping. Remaining hours of the show are 10am to 5pm today (Saturday) and Sunday. If you want to meet me, I’ll be working at the show from 12-5pm on Sunday. I would love to connect with you!

Photo-Heart Connection: September 2014

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OK, I must be honest. I’m not sure if this is my Photo-Heart Connection for the month or not. We are in the final throes of our remodel, and this week all of our furniture is moved out of the living spaces in our house for flooring installation. This week everything we own is crammed into, and we are living in, our three bedrooms and the garage. We are well beyond no kitchen right now, adding no dining room, no family room, no studio, no comfy chair, no computer to the list. So getting myself ready for the September Photo-Heart Connection, carving out time and space in my creative world when my physical world is such a mess, became an overwhelming feat I just couldn’t quite manage. I hope you understand.

I don’t want to let my craziness stop you, though. I want to encourage you to find your Photo-Heart Connection this month. Assuming you have a little time and space available, find the piece of art you created that has the strongest connection to your heart and write about it. I will be gaining peace and strength from you all this month as you share your Photo-Heart Connection with us here.


Smartphone Art Workshop in two weeks!

I’m getting excited… my “Smartphone Art Weekend” is just two weeks away! I’ve added a second day of material to the Smartphone Art workshop, going deeper into advanced editing and blending techniques. You know, the ones where you say, “How did you DO that, Kat?” All my secrets will be revealed! It’s going to be a good time.

Smartphone Art 1 & 2
October 11 & 12, 2014
Sequoia Gallery + Studios
Hillsboro, OR
Cost is $95+apps per day, register through Sequoia

New students can register for both days or the first day, Smartphone Art 1, only. Returning Smartphone Art students can register for the second day, Smartphone Art 2. The classes build on each other, so Smartphone Art 1 (the original one-day class) is a prerequisite for Smartphone Art 2.

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You will be amazed at what you can create, just with an iOS device. Come join me for some mobile photography fun!

Season of Attention

Summer is lingering in Oregon. School has started, but the wonderful hot, sunny weather has continued. I’m still wearing sandals and short-sleeved shirts. Fully engaged and cruising along in summer mode.

But the trees… They are heading in to fall. They aren’t waiting around for me to catch up, either. Quietly, stealthily, autumn color creeps along the branches.

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If I’m not careful, I will miss it. This is a season where attention is required. There are a few short weeks of transition, and in Oregon it can be even less. Autumn can disappear as quickly as the first rainstorms arrive, the wind and rain knocking the fragile, fading leaves off the trees.

Noticing the shift in color, I am reminded to take a deep breath and be in the moment. So much is going on in my life right now, it’s easy to keep my head down and focus on what’s next. But if I don’t look up and around once in a while, the season will be gone before I’ve registered it.

These moments of realization make me so thankful that I am a photographer. How else would I wake up and be in the moment, without the desire to pause once in a while and capture the world around me? Without the joy of tiny details catching my eye? I can’t imagine.

Autumn now has my attention, however long it lasts. I look forward to seeing what each day has to offer me.