sweet ’16


Happy Sweet ’16, everyone!

Ok, hopefully you’ve had your morning coffee, because it’s heart-on-sleeve time…

This new year feels HUGE. Full of possibilities, opportunities, new plans. Deep breath. It’s exciting and terrifying, wrapped into one sparkly package. I have more resolutions than I’ve ever had. There are lists. Lots of lists. I wasn’t going to talk about this but my fingers just keep typing, so I guess this is happening. After almost seven years of writing “The Jealous Curator”, I’ve decided that in July of 2016, when I wrap up my current design job, I will finally make the jump and take TJC from my “side project” to my “only project”… I’m not going to say “job” because I don’t see it that way. This little corner of the interweb has never felt like a “job” to me. No, not even close. It’s the place where I’ve met all of you. It allows me to share the art that I covet. It’s given me the opportunity to start a podcast and write books … which still kind of blows my mind. On top of all of that, my own artwork has improved so much, and although sharing my work has always seemed like a terrifying thing to do, this community is just so amazingly supportive, I finally feel like I can.

This is where it gets a bit scary. In the fall, my new book will be released. It’s different than the first two. No interviews like Creative Block, and more than a collection of work like Collage. This book is ten chapters. Ten chapters of me… writing. Writing about self-doubt, and inner critics, and blocks, and inspiration, and failing, and finding your tribe, and remembering the joy of just making stuff. And this is where it gets a bit meta… my inner-critic has always lived in my art studio. He has never, ever, come over to Jealous Curator land – until I started writing this book. I was writing about inner critics, and so perhaps he saw that as a fancy letterpress invitation to come on over. Anyway, he showed up. He questioned every word, every chapter title, every little f’n thing. But I kept writing. I cried a bunch of times, wanted to quit a few times, but I kept writing. Slowly but surely I was able to actually take my own advice {meta}, and by the end of it all my inner critic was kind of on my side. I don’t want to call him a friend just yet, but we’re working on it. However, as I head into this new year, this HUGE year, he has a few things to say:

You’re going to put everything you’ve got into this Jealous Curator thing? Really?! What if you fall on your face? That could totally happen.

Yeah… jerk. We may need a therapist.

So, on January 1, 2016 I’m going to take my own advice. I’m going to take a deep breath, and instead of allowing that voice to stop me from jumping, I’m going to listen carefully to what it’s nattering on about and translate it… ok, so what if I do “fall on my face”? First of all, what does that even mean? Am I worried about failing? Failing so epically that I will fall on my face and just stay down there for the rest of my life? Well that’s dumb. “Failing” just means you tried something and it didn’t work the way you thought it would, so you get back up and you try it again in another way. If I “fall on my face”, well then, I guess I’ll just get back up and go again. Hm, that doesn’t sound too bad. And besides, the only way I could truly fail, would be if I chickened out and didn’t make this jump… this jump that I should have made a long time ago.

Exhale. So there you have it. Everything out. Shared. Ready {ish} for the new year. I hope your year is filled with exciting/terrifying challenges too… I’ll see you out there! xo  Oh, and ps. the full year, 12 unblocking projects from 2015, can all be found right here if you want to do them again, or try them for the first time. Have fun!

*Art by Trey Speegle

comments (39)

  1. Kim /// 01.01.2016 /// 10:57am

    I enjoy your site. I’m cheering for you! 2016 sounds like a year that will bring new adventures and opportunities to be brave & vulnerable. Cheers!

  2. the jealous curator /// 01.01.2016 /// 11:21am

    thanks kim! lots of exciting adventures to you too!

  3. Megan /// 01.01.2016 /// 11:23am

    Congratulations!!! I’m so thrilled for you! Growth can be scary and uncomfortable; but you know the good stuff is there! This is my first year really putting myself out there with my fine art and trying to earn some sort of income that helps my family. I find I’m still discovering my footing with what I’m creating; what I’m trying to say with my work and what my style zone is. Each new artwork is another piece of the puzzle and I’m learning to stop fighting it so much…to let it just flow and take me for a ride along the current instead. Here’s to bravery and adventure!

  4. the jealous curator /// 01.01.2016 /// 11:26am

    ah! that’s amazing megan… yes, to bravery and adventure indeed! xo

  5. Nicole /// 01.01.2016 /// 11:35am

    Congratulations on making the leap! I love what you’re doing here, and I especially love Art for Your Ear. Saturday mornings have never been more inspiring!

  6. Ninotchka /// 01.01.2016 /// 11:58am

    All the best to you, Danielle! You’re going to rock this thing, I just know it. Happy New Year!

  7. Ciara Kay /// 01.01.2016 /// 12:10pm

    Yeah!! You got this! I’m so stoked for you, I think you totally deserve this and every success as you take the leap! Since I discovered this project I have found so much inspiration and encouragement and like you said, it’s time to preach it to yourself and go for it! Even if it doesn’t turn out the way you imagined and hoped, it will be a beautiful mess and I know you’ll be better for it, and I think we will too, seeing your example. In that sense, you can’t fail. 😉 You’ve got this and your work here is important! Thank you and best of luck in 2016!

  8. Penelope /// 01.01.2016 /// 12:49pm

    Yay! I find it amazing that you still have a day job! I can’t wait to read your new book, and maybe get some of that courage for myself. You’re always inspiring, keep sharing!

  9. Sister Hilda /// 01.01.2016 /// 12:57pm

    You go for it, Danielle! You are doing such good work here that is encouraging and hopeful to your readers and listeners. I keep you in my thoughts as you take this brave leap!

  10. Uli /// 01.01.2016 /// 1:36pm

    Amazing! I’ve been waiting for this since I followed you a year ago. I admire your blog & podcast so much I’m very happy for you & your “new” journey. I’m not even close to that but I myself took some steps to more freedom, quit my job & signed up for an art course this year. I can’t wait to follow your blog in 2016 x

  11. Katy gilmore /// 01.01.2016 /// 1:55pm

    Hooray for you! I already love both blog and podcast and will be so curious to see where you go with total focus. And I wish you the very best in an exciting and rewarding 2016!!

  12. Deidre But-Husaim /// 01.01.2016 /// 3:24pm

    Brilliant Danielle! I think it’s time to kick that inner critic to the kerb. I don’t think you’ll fall on your face … and really, so what if you trip or stumble, big deal, that’s what makes life curious and interesting, we learn from this. The alternative is stagnation. Time flies, swoosh, that was your life! Nothing worse than in the future to be regretting not having followed your inner voice that tells you you could Do this!! : )

  13. the jealous curator /// 01.01.2016 /// 5:29pm

    thanks everyone… and i agree… i don’t want to ever wonder “what if”. it’s time.

  14. Sally Herman /// 01.01.2016 /// 5:41pm

    Cheering you on! Go, go, go, go, go! xxo

  15. Juliet Meeks /// 01.01.2016 /// 6:24pm

    Congratulations to you! I’ve been following TJC for years, and am so excited to see what you’ll be working on and to check out the new book!

  16. Kelly Cook /// 01.01.2016 /// 6:47pm

    Good luck! YOU can do it! Such a great thing to do what you LOVE. We are all 100% behind you!

  17. Yen Yen /// 01.01.2016 /// 7:58pm

    It must be a huge step for you to turn TJC from side project to an “only project”, I am so happy for you and I believe you can do so many wonderful things and bring more inspirations to all of us!!! I am applying for MFA painting and illustration program and hope to study in USA in the fall semester. Sometimes I question myself and feel depressed because the process is really not easy…but I know if I give up now I will definitely feel regret. I will try my best like you! Thank you and hope you have a wonderful 2016! 🙂

  18. Annika /// 01.01.2016 /// 8:03pm

    Yay for you! I can’t wait to see the outcome of this year- I can tell it is going to be great. Don’t let your inner critic get you down. I have been following your blog for the past few years and I have to say it has always been inspiring and I am loving your recent work on your ‘Art For Your Ear’ pod-cast and various books. All the best for the new year, I know you can do this!

  19. Melanie Biehle /// 01.01.2016 /// 9:51pm

    Go, you! Happy New Year, D!!! I’m so proud of you and excited for you and so happy to know you. Xoxo

  20. Gretchen /// 01.02.2016 /// 5:31am

    So excited for you! Being vulnerable and taking a leap is totally scary but always worth it. If you haven’t read it already, “Daring Greatly” by Brene Brown will confirm that idea–or just check out her TED talk.

  21. brandi marie /// 01.02.2016 /// 7:54am

    The timing seems so right for this! From an outside perspective, we’re all like, “Well d’uh! She’s so got this!” And you do. I cannot wait to see how you soar. Still my favorite blog. Happy New Year! <3

  22. the jealous curator /// 01.02.2016 /// 9:51am

    thanks so much, everyone! i’m excited/nervous but i’d much rather feel like that than bored!

  23. Cecile /// 01.02.2016 /// 11:33am

    Bravo, good luck!

  24. Rania /// 01.02.2016 /// 2:16pm

    totally brilliant d! xo

  25. Catxballou /// 01.02.2016 /// 10:03pm

    Take a big leap forward, you will never regret it. You have built a fantastic supportive community with the JC, and You’ve definitely inspired me to be a bit braver. I wish you the very best xo

  26. Yvonne /// 01.03.2016 /// 4:11am

    Wow. Sounds like a really good decision. I hear you on the scary part, but it’s going to be worth it! Really looking forward to your new book.

  27. Lori /// 01.03.2016 /// 6:49am

    Yay! Can’t wait to see what this year brings for the Jealous Curator and to read your new book when it’s out. I’m cheering for you!

  28. Julie /// 01.03.2016 /// 8:00am

    Go Girl!!!!
    You will do fantastic!!
    I have also decided that 2016 is the year to stop procrastinating and just do it!
    Lots of luck!

  29. Sarah /// 01.03.2016 /// 11:30am

    Wow! That’s so amazing! You inspire me so much! (Also, I’m totally getting withdrawals from no podcasts). Congratulations on making this your full time gig this year and for showing us a new way to respond to that annoying inner critic. Hope I can do that. I just finished up a year of drawing/painting everyday. 365 pieces of art to show for it. And what have I had since Jan 1? The worst case of creative block/fear that I’ve ever had. I don’t know what my deal is but at least this time, I’ve still made something each day. I guess that’s growth. I would’ve just quit in the past. So thank you so much for your inspiration and wisdom!

  30. crescent rodgers /// 01.03.2016 /// 9:59pm

    Yay! more you and more art! I am always jealous of the art you find and wish I’d found it! but then I remember that I found you and your blog and so I get to have found the art that you find too!! keep finding because I need you to found more art for me to find… okay a little convoluted but Yay! more you and more art!!
    Thank You!!

  31. leigh hannan /// 01.04.2016 /// 5:46am

    Congratulations! I’ve just started following you after I heard your interview with Monica Lee, and I’ve been enjoying your blog; Happy Sweet 16!

  32. simone /// 01.04.2016 /// 7:01am

    wow. Phenomenal. I am happy and over joyed for you. I look forward to see how it evolves. You are supported. You are never alone.

  33. bruna /// 01.04.2016 /// 9:28am

    do it. do it! DO IT!!!!

    and dont look back….

    keep on living MY dream. cannot wait for the book.


  34. Amy Tingle /// 01.04.2016 /// 12:46pm

    Hip hip hooray (although I’ve gotta admit even though I probably knew it wasn’t your only gig, I kind of already thought it was you’re only gig. So really, what I’m trying to say is you’ve already bypassed falling on your face zone in my world, so just keep on being a kick-ass artist, writer, and curator!!)
    And thank you so much for the bazillion hours of inspiration. You are one of the reasons I can confidently call myself an artist in 2016. This year feels ridiculously grand already!!

  35. the jealous curator /// 01.04.2016 /// 1:06pm

    ah, thanks amy! that made my day!

  36. Constance /// 01.04.2016 /// 4:28pm

    Holy Moly! You scared me real bad. I thought you were closing down the TJC. I actually welled up and stopped reading. I had to come back and get the details. Phew! And YAY! I’m so happy for you! I’m so inspired by your courage and your willingness to be vulnerable. Thank you for showing us all your nervousness and anxieties and how you push through. I’ve been listening to the podcasts while I draw and it’s such a comfort, so much joy and dare I say… AMAZING! You rock!

  37. Kate /// 01.04.2016 /// 7:50pm

    Congratulations!! How exciting! I just love your blog and just love your new podcast as well! Listening to your podcast makes me feel like I’m the luckiest fly on the wall listening to two artists talk shop. It’s so incredibly inspiring! Happy New Year and thank you for all the hard work and love you put into these creative endeavors. You touch so many people right in the feels! :}

  38. Jen /// 01.05.2016 /// 10:28am

    Congratulations! I’m really happy for you that you’re taking the next step with TJC and, judging by the recent work you’re posting on Instagram, with your own art, too! Although I highly doubt you will “fail” or “fall on your face,” I totally understand the fear and so will say that taking the leap in and of itself is a success that many of us never enjoy because the fear holds us back. It’s such a cliche, but it really is the journey rather than the destination that is important. I’d be wise to remember that myself this year! Thanks for the inspiration, and best of luck to you in 2016.

  39. Kristin Liu /// 01.11.2016 /// 4:40pm

    Congratulations!! That’s very exciting news! You have lots of fans cheering for you 🙂