What’s the “unexpected journey”? Well, for all my business life, I used the left side of my brain. Problem-solving and managing people and projects in the high tech industry requires a very organized and analytical mind and – that’s me. Type A all the way. But once I retired, that side of my brain didn’t require such a rigorous workout and I began to explore other ways to keep myself occupied.
I spent lots of time honing my golf game – got my Index down to 15! I served on all sorts of local boards. I volunteered to develop and maintain websites and blogs for various community groups. I was the go-to person for any computer-related questions (it got to the point I was jokingly answering our phone “Vicki’s Computer Support … press 1 for English …!) I was just as busy in retirement as I had been while I was “working”. But something was missing. And something odd was happening to me. I started to recognize the stirrings of a desire to do something creative. Me. She who can’t draw a recognizable stick figure.
We live in the Gold Country foothills of the Sierra Nevada mountains in California where we are very frequently visited by coyote, bobcats, mountain lions and all sorts of other wildlife! So I got a decent DSLR and started taking pictures. And more pictures. And even more pictures. Then I had to find something to do with all those pictures.
In 2007, while “surfing” (remember when we called it that?) the internet, I stumbled upon a reference to “digital scrapbooking” and instantly fell in love with it. It let me combine my geeky-techie software-loving side with a creative way to preserve the thousands of photos I’ve been taking since we moved out to the boonies! (You can find some of these photos on my old iVicki Photoblog.)
Finally, I’d found a hobby that let me use the right side of my brain! Plus, it gave me the perfect excuse to buy lots of stuff! Digital scrapbooking led me to designing/selling digital scrapbooking kits and that, in turn, opened the door to digital art/life journaling. And that led me to explore the world of hands-on mixed media art journaling projects – which I am learning to turn into digital products for other digitally-minded artists! Oh. And I get to buy more stuff.
If you had told me twenty years ago, or ten or even five years ago that I would have a room in my house filled with paints and canvasses; and stamps; and stencils and gel matte medium; and gesso I would have thought you’d lost your mind – and then I would have asked you what “gesso” was!
So, you see, this is a completely unexpected journey – but I’m having a blast. However, I am gonna need a bigger house!