I will always remember 2010 as a year full of magic. I certainly didn't coast through the year with ease, and there were times when I had the blackest, darkest thoughts I have ever had, when I felt that things just wouldn't be okay. In the end, though, they were okay, and at times they were even beautiful.
I never made it through my 365 project. I found myself taking film pictures more than ever and was careless about writing down when I took what picture. Sometimes pictures didn't turn out for that day, and I felt like a failure. I sometimes had to post pictures that I hated, and I would dwell on that. The winter felt so long, there was so little light, and I never forced myself to learn to work around those circumstances. It was too much torment for something that was supposed to be frivolous. I did, however, take more pictures than I have ever taken in my life. Looking through all my pictures reminds me of moments I have already forgotten. I hope that in 2011 I can continue to take many pictures for that very reason, but with more care & respect for the medium, and maybe I can experiment more at the same time. I still don't feel that I know what I'm doing, but I've learned a lot in the past few months.
In 2010 I threw a sparkly birthday party. I didn't expect to travel at all, but somehow managed to travel a bit (farewell, savings account!). I visited Chicago for the first time. Caitlin and I introduced Summer Water, and I embraced my love of felines and started Dreamcats. Geoff & I brought a sweet little feral kitten into our lives and found a home for her siblings. I acted on whims. I participated in the 1010 Project with some of my favourite photographers. I took pictures in people's homes, starting with Melinda's. Geoff turned 30 surrounded by lovely friends on a patio in springtime, and I started to think more seriously about crafting a business with him. Our weekend in Portland at Little Winter went better than I could have dreamed. Over the year I met so many people for the first time, people who are now so dear to me, who live a few minutes from me, or a few thousand miles. I tried to do a lot with a little and at times I had some modest successes. I daydreamed, I pulled ideas out of the air, I rode my bike one-handed while eating gummy candies from my pocket, I shared countless meals and drinks with wonderful people. Geoff bought me wildflowers every week in the summer, I started wearing glasses again. I posed for photos in photobooths, I cried it out, I danced it out. I didn't read nearly as many books as I should have, and I tried not to feel so down on myself about silly things such as looks and finances (and sometimes I was able to do it). Something that started as a mistake turned into a collaboration with an artist I've admired for years, long story. It was an important year, but I only hope that it was just the start. I don't think I measure accomplishments the way that other people do, but I'm proud of my 2010.
It might be hard to believe but there were times when this blog was such a consolation, no matter how hard I am on myself about it, how self-deprecating, how it's never as good as I want it to be, etc. I owe all of you so much for being a source of encouragement & support. I am consistently amazed at how generous you are with your words & thoughts.
A lot of people I know suffered difficulties in 2010, but you guys, you made it, we made it. High fives, everybody! Here's to a 2011 filled with health, happiness, adventure, and so much love it'll make your heart burst.
Jennifer: I know! Those books were bananas. My parents had no idea what was in them and luckily didn't flip through them. I would have been in so much trouble otherwise, yikes! I did have to hide my copy of Appetite for Destruction, though.
anja louise: Yes! I hope you do make some VC-inspired art, because that would be amazing.
Rachel Anastasia: I hope you make it to The Willies! Or some place very much like it.
Michele: Some of them are the keyhole covers, yeah! So amazing. My Sweet Audrina was one of my favourites as well -- but it was also the most messed up one of all, don't you think? It was so crazy!
becka: I used to think it was serious literature! I was so proud of myself for reading thick books when so many people in my class didn't even read books. The weird thing is that I don't remember feeling too shocked or scandalized at the time -- a friend of mine had given me a pulp fiction book called Little Girls for Sale that was a million times more scandalous than anything VC Andrews wrote. By the time I got to VC I was kind of jaded, I guess! (Little Girls for Sale was confiscated by a teacher when she caught us reading it in the playground. Oh man, it was SO BAD.)
Caroline: I wonder if people still read them!
davis.: That movie was one of the first times I was disappointed in a movie that was based on a book! I should re-watch it!
tara-lynn: Yeah, it's not quite the same at this age! Plus I have guilt for reading them when I could be reading something that I've never read before.
skinnycat78: Cathy was a pretty amazing character! I was really in love with her when I was little.
bee: The spines of these books are creased like crazy! They don't smell like smoke, but they are quite yellowed. My Sweet Audrina is completely messed. I didn't really know what electroshock was at the time, and it was horrifying. From time to time the Vera character (quite similar to the Fanny character from the Casteel series) pops into my head... crazy to think what is lodged in our sub-consciouses as the result of the VC books! Thanks for the Jezebel link! I hadn't seen that before.
Shannyn: I hope you can find them! But not with the new covers, with the old ones. They are quite special!
Camille: Thank you! Sometimes I type all sorts of things without really thinking too hard about it and chalk it up to being "true to my feelings" and whatnot, ha. I guess I was feeling defensive but I don't react well to being passive-aggressively insulted on my blog. I welcome creative criticism, but I can't really do anything with a rhetorical question. Anyhow, the accusation of materialism definitely bothered me and it is something I will be more conscious of in the future, but at the same time, I have always felt quite conscious of it! Blogs are all just image anyhow.
catherine_sr.: Thank you! I said it to someone on Twitter recently, but I agree -- I feel as though every time I buy something from a Canadian designer I am rebelling against so much in the world and almost committing a political act! I'm not sure what it's like in Taiwan but in Canada designers have to struggle against high material costs, lack of exposure, etc. I think you're right about materialism -- certainly no one thinks that my second-hand coat and knit hat make me high class or worthy of envy.
Caroline: They are! Even now, years later, I'm still compelled.
jlee: Garden of Shadows! Wow! I don't think I liked that one too much -- maybe because the main character was plain and I was obsessed with WASPy beauty!
Charlotte Elise Jay: Thank you!
K: The weird thing is that I read Christopher Pike after the VC. I was obsessed with the idea that I could read a whole book in one day. Ha! The Sweet Valley author was Francine Pascal. I never read those -- I missed out!
Erika Lee Sears: It's okay!
Sarah: Yeah, no doubt! I still remember random passages from those books, like how Cathy and Chris' mother would sit at her vanity and put on tons of makeup and turn into the most beautiful creature anyone had ever seen... and that swan bed... and (ew) when Tony was making the portrait doll of Leigh (ew).
Allison: Thanks! I knew I'd find other people who understood the weird obsession, haha.
ola appletea: Thanks!
Christine: Thank you, to you as well!
Lesley Robin: It turns out they are super easy to find when you start looking!
Emily: Oh yes... a very secret cult. Everyone is embarrassed about it!
Laura: No doubt at all in my mind! Secret shame!
CrowNology: Either damage was done or it made us prudish! It's hard to say.
acharmedcity: Awesome! I just did that myself! It wasn't quite the same but it was still so enjoyable.