Pursuing All the Things

So, I’ve just got finished with three months’ worth of events, Black Ink, Virtuous Con, and Black Expo in Charleston. 😳 Now, the next big things I’m working on are The North Charleston Arts Festival and publishing my second book. (As I’m editing this post, I will also be a vendor at the Gullah Gala on May 20th, because I apparently can’t sit down somewhere 😅.) Both of these are hefty tasks, but the arts fest is where I will be doing my first public dance performance/animation installation that isn’t a school project. That’s double 😳😳. I can talk about the writing process another time, but as of right now, I’m prioritizing the animation dance project.

Now, you might be asking, “Jess, what do you mean by an animation dance project?” Back when I was in college, I did this:

Microcosm, Spring 2019

This was a project called Microcosm where I created an animated background that a solo or small group of dancers could perform in front of. I also created the choreography. I was inspired by artists and groups like Enra, Cirque De Soleil, Creature Technology, and most recently I’ve been dazzled by the projection technology used in Shen Yun.

Since Microcosm, I started taking dance classes with Charleston Dance Space which then culminated in me becoming part of one of their performance groups, the Charleston Modern Collective. I’ve been having a blast and have already performed twice this year and both performances were in the same day. AND, that means that all the rusty edges of my dance abilities are steadily shaking off. I’m learning technique, how to trust my body again, and to just be myself. It’s been so refreshing and is actually healing my inner child a little bit.

I’m currently in the animation phase of the project and that has been working slowly but surely. Basically, as I keep pushing through the project, I keep leveling up my skills, even if it’s in just one sit-down session. If you want to see a buildup of behind-the-scenes elements of me creating the animation, I’ll be posting images and notes on my BuyMeACoffee page where you can become a member for $2/month. But, if you aren’t ready for that level of commitment, you are free to make a one-time donation as well. Clicking the coffee cup on the bottom right corner will take you there.☺️

Now, you might be thinking, “Jess, you’re all over the place doing all these things. Why don’t you just hunker down and focus?” The truth is, I can’t. Or at least, I don’t think I can. One of my neurodivergences is ADHD and for me, that means that I have a lot of interests and crave variety. I always admired artists who had multiple skill sets and ventures. The idea of just repeating the same thing every day sounds like death by boredom. It also didn’t help that I kept dreaming up different ideas in different realms of creativity. Alongside that, I realize that I’m not superwoman, and contrary to popular belief I’m not every woman and it is not all in me. I’m learning to balance my long list of interests and projects with rest, grace, and most importantly seeking collaboration. I’ve met so many amazing people this year that have encouraged me to slow down and not let my dreams drive me out of my mind. So, if you are a multipotentialite, you can do your things, but just be strategic about it and cut yourself some slack.

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