Something I have often thought of as a mother is that well-known quote, “the days go slow, but the years go by fast”. Well, doesn’t that just describe this last year perfectly? When we first entered lockdown, each day felt incredibly long, full of uncertainty and confusion. And yet, my family and I soon fell into a new pattern of normal. We adapted our home to create a make-shift studio, I started painting and very soon, the Urban Queen was born. I kept painting, sharing and growing this amazing art community – and all of a sudden, a whole year has gone by! Where did all that time go?!
As we approach the Urban Queen’s 1st anniversary, I am reflecting on what the last year has taught me. One lesson is resoundingly clear: resilience. That beautifully human ability to bounce back from adversity. To grow and to thrive, despite the hardships that life throws at us.
To me, art is resilience in action. While we turn to scientists to develop a vaccine that protects us from a virus, we also turn to art as an emotional and social balm to soothe our stressed-out nerves. Art reminds us of the beautiful blue sky when all we see above us are clouds. Art helps us express emotions we don’t have words for, and in doing so, can heal us in ways we cannot describe.
It has been incredible seeing how creative energies flowed and flourished, even during the pandemic. In fact, chaos and fear do not hinder creativity – they can inspire it. Think of those addictive TikTok videos, Elton John live streaming from his backyard, or galleries sharing their huge art collections to digital audiences for the first time. Or, of course, our gorgeous Urban Queens.
Inspired by the everyday women who were making their way through the pandemic with grace, confidence, empathy and strength, the Urban Queen reminds us of how we can (and do) rise up from adversity. How we have an inner strength that keeps pushing us forward. The Urban Queen is a symbol of resilience in all its simple, steadfast glory. She is the quiet voice inside that whispers, “I’ve got this”.
In a time when I could have easily put ‘normal life’ on hold and withdrawn into a paralysis of fear, my resilience kept me going. I decided to pick up the paintbrush and let all my emotions, anxieties, inspirations sparkle onto the canvas. I found a passion and an empowering voice that I never knew I had! And I have absolutely adored sharing that with you all, my dearest art community.
I am forever inspired by the stories you have shared as well. So many of you have shared your own experiences of pain and perseverance. Every time we take that step to own our story, to express our true selves, to take empowered action – I believe we are building up a little more resilience in ourselves.
Through experiencing this long year dominated by COVID-19, I have definitely developed a stronger sense of resilience. This has heightened my resolve to continue painting, no matter what life throws at me next!
As we celebrate the 1st birthday of the Urban Queen, her empowering message – like all creative arts – is as essential as ever. Wouldn’t you agree?