The Nightly Owl

Tanya Green in Fredericksburg, Virginia is creating The Nightly Owl...

Why did you decide to do this project? I decided to do this project because I was tired of everything else in my life taking precedence over the things I've always wanted to do, but never gave myself the time to do. I am an art teacher by day and a mom of two highly energetic boys (2 and 4) whenever I'm not working. For the past seven years I've worked with children because I'm passionate about getting them to think creatively and solve problems their way. It's time that I practice what I preach. So much of my energy has gone into my students and my family, that not much creative energy has been left for my own artwork. That has changed now and I'm truly glad that I jumped off the cliff into this crazy creative initiative.

How has doing a yearlong/daily project affected your life? I am only two weeks into doing my yearlong/daily project and I think my body has become acclimated to getting much less sleep than I used to get! To be honest, over the last 15 nights a lot has changed. My family, my students, and people at work have gotten somewhat invested in my journey as well. I'm getting random things donated to me for future owl creations. One co-worker went home during lunch to get me a variety of tea bags to use for Day 13. She was so excited that her tea became art! My students have been checking out the owls too. They love to ask me how I created certain owls. When I tell them that I used my brain and my imagination, some are dumbfounded. After I showed a class my LEGO owl, a student said "Oh there's a kit for that!" My reaction was, "No there is not. I made that up myself!" Hmph...children trying to steal my thunder. Ha ha!

Overall, I am a much happier person. As I go through my work day, I have this sense of accomplishment and anticipation for the next accomplishment that keeps me uplifted and energetic. I'm realizing that "Yes, I can do Art!" After teaching for so long and not necessarily challenging my own creativity and skills, I forgot that I can create. I am amazing myself nightly. Sharing my creations with my students and people I don't even know has been pretty amazing too. My sons even ask to create art when I'm working on a owl. I am one happy "artist" and I feel like I can finally call myself one. Weird, I know!

See all of Tanya's owls HERE.

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