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Image: Studio table covered with snippets of color studies and works in progress.

As the first of September draws near, there is much left to do. Yet, I cannot help but look back. I turn, and just past my shoulder, I see all the pieces of somethings that contributed to the place where I now stand looking at it all. Looking at it all, and feeling contentedly full somehow because it is important to account for the steps that led from mere ideas to let's-sees to alright-thens to things that I now hold in my hands.

When I take note of the creative process, I feel uplifted. I'm often disheartened by the fast-paced nature and impatience for immediate gratification that I so often see in the culture that surrounds me in a daily way. It wears on me, and I often daydream of quiet spaces filled with natural light and green botanicals in my every periphery.

I have always deeply loved and appreciated the concept of- and participation in- process. For me, it is the most meaningful aspect of creating. If you're careful, you won't miss it. You'll slow until you can pay attention and take note of its movement. You'll see its significance and what it says about you and the way things come to be when you engage with paints and pages. Rushing only seems to lessen the fruit.

I look at my leftover sketches and color studies, and I remember ideas being born, relief in finding the precise color combination for which I was searching, times (many times) when I said with exasperation, "I'm too tired. I just can't do this anymore." I note the ideas that failed, ones that weren't quite right, and ones set aside for another time when I am more inspired to see them through. I rediscover colors that I have forgotten, and I want them to have their turn. I relive the sigh that always escapes at the completion of a piece.

Tonight, I sit on my bed on a too-warm summer evening, thinking on all that has made up this year so far. All that has or has not transpired. My eye lids feel heavy, come to a close, and I feel a deep joy knowing that I'm nearly to a destination that I set out for in many months past.

Reveling in the process and not only the outcome, I am ready and eager to share the body of work that has been growing these seven months past. Ready to share it with all of you.


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Welcome to the personal blog of of Kimberly Kuniko, a Nikkei American illustrator, collage artist, poet, and host of cozy, virtual guided creative retreats with a new theme each month.

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