2023 is almost over and what a year it's been! Thanks to everyone who has followed along, bought something, or shared my work. Here's just a FEW of the things we did this year:
• Hosted outdoor Happy Hour pop-ups with dozens of local artists and a half dozen different breweries, as well as thousands of attendees
• Wrote and published an entirely new book (National Park Monster Ranger) and republished a second edition of an old favorite (Pittsburgh in Olden Times)
• Played host to several community events including Park(ing) Day, a food pickup, and the Greenfield Yard Sale
• Released not one, not two, but THREE calendars for 2024, including two brand-new designs. All of which are still available for sale; plus 10% of the sale of each Masterpieces Calendar goes to BOOM Concepts here in Pittsburgh, a creative hub dedicated to the advancement of Black, Brown, Queer, and Femme artists.
• Sold work at a bunch of different events, including Crafts and Drafts (which I curate), the Hilltop County Fair, the KSD Maker's Market, Renegade Chicago, Handmade Arcade, Krampus Market, and probably others I am forgetting!
• Had my first-ever beer collaboration with good friends and new neighbors Necromancer beer with the Greenfield Ghoul (still available at Necromancer!)
• Created a spooktacular VHS Horror pop-up for Halloween that looks like it'll have to become a recurring thing
• And created Holiday Saturdays, a weekly pop-up series for November & December featuring different artists, makers, & sellers.
I'm not gonna lie - this year was a lot! I've included the above photo (from a failed shoot where I was trying to make it look like a bunch of products were being tossed gracefully in the air) because I think it really illustrates what being a small business owner is like.
It's a constant juggling act, between coming up with ideas for new work, making that work, packaging it, promoting it, selling it, selling it wholesale, shipping it, dealing with lost packages, handling returns, running your finances, making mistakes with your finances, hiring staff, hosting events, collaborating with people, finding new ways to promote your work when Instagram decides to just not work anymore, and on and on and on.
It's exhausting and it's fun and I wouldn't have it any other way. And the only reason I can keep doing it is because of YOU, you the person who is reading this right now, who keeps supporting me and my nonsense.
So once again, yes I know I say it all the time but goshdarn I really mean it, THANK YOU. Sending you best wishes for a great new year, and as Ray Davies once wrote, I hope tomorrow you find better things.