Baltimore, Barcelona, and a Baby! by Lee Wilson

Hello friends and family!

My first newsletter just hit the inboxes! I wanted to post the content here as well to give non-subscribers a chance to read. If you want to join my mailing list, just click here :)

Each newsletter will feature different highlights of my art career (along with some personal life anecdotes of course, because ya know, that's just me).

So, whoo!, here are some quick life updates:

- We moved into a new apartment! Reach out via text or email if you need our new mailing address.
- I got a new job at a jewelry studio that will allow me to work from home after G.Bear (our baby's nickname as we still wait to discover if it is a boy or a girl!) is born!
- I have also been blessed with a few freelance jobs recently.
- I crave nothing but orange juice being 36 weeks pregnant!
- We're continuing to work here in the city with YWAM Baltimore.

YWAM is the missions organization we worked with in Lyon, France and Alesund, Norway, and is the main topic of this newsletter.
It is an international organization with a mission statement of "Know God, and make Him known." Each location around the world executes this mission through different avenues. For example, YWAM Lyon has a passion for training artists with excellence, and aims to combine high quality street art - most notably through the hip hop movement and contemporary art - with sharing the Gospel. We did that by performing in festivals, painting murals all around France, and giving artistic workshops - all while building sustainable relationship + community.

YWAM Baltimore has a similar heart for creatives. Part of the mission is to support creatives + invest in their individual craft and faith. At the same time, we want to explore the possibilities of forming artist communities and creatively communicating the power of the gospel in everyday life + relationship.

Christian and I are currently on the leadership team of YWAM Baltimore, figuring out exactly what will be our long term role within it. Most of you know that I have had a dream of starting an artist collective (what Christian and I have dubbed as "The Wombat Idea" for easy reference), and YWAM Baltimore seems like a good avenue to make that dream happen.

For the past month with YWAM specfically, we welcomed 4 artists from another YWAM team in Barcelona! With them we:

- Hosted an "art night" in our home as a kick-off to the month they spent here
- I did an Artist Talk with them, discussing what it looks like to be a practicing artist, my experience with creative communities over the past 3 years, and how to pursue the creative identity God has put inside of us as artists.
- Designed and hand screen printed some fun t-shirts that represent different views of Baltimore.
- Ate lots of good food!

Other things the Barcelona team did that Christian and I didn't directly host were:
- "Pop Up Brewery" and "Art on Tap" - two creative nights to engage the city.
- Art therapy with a small group of refugee women.
- Played music at "Abode" - the monthly worship night hosted by YWAM Baltimore at Church & Company in Hampden.

The team departed this past Monday, and now Christian and I are settling into having a baby! We are only 4 weeks away from the due date, and we have a crib and a changing table set up -- so we're obviously making great progress ;)

For more photos from the past month, take a look at my Instagram - @lee_nowell

Thanks for reading!
With love,
Lee

Website launch by Lee Wilson

I am officially launching and announcing this new website! 

Christian and I moved back to the United States this past June, and officially settled back into Baltimore on August 1, in our small but cozy 1 bedroom apartment in Bolton Hill. The last bit of summer and first months of fall have been a whirlwind of transition, culture shock, both excitement and no-excitement-what-so-ever, gratitude, family time, and loads more.

During this time, I felt a huge lull in the creative sphere of my life. In reality, I'm known for being way too hard on myself, and forgetful of the necessity of "down seasons" in order to thrive in the creatively filled seasons. I instantly think I'm not doing enough, feeling guilty for not being in the studio but frustrated at finances that prevent supply-purchasing, and that I'm failing at pushing my art career forward. "Lack of inspiration" is probably more accurately identified as "inspiration taken away by myself". 

At the end of October, I walked over to Park Cafe to use wifi and just couldn't take the "pout in my own inspiration-less bad attitude" anymore. So I looked up a fellow artist's resume + website that I respect and said: what parts of this have I already done and what parts do I want to work towards? She had just recently re-launched a beautiful new website herself, highlighting images of her recent solo exhibition. *Click* - my small step to keep moving forward. I have no galleries or grants or clients or curators to show it off to at the moment, but I will redesign my website. I, myself, will be proud of what I have accomplished while working and living abroad and showcase it. It's like putting on a suit to go to work even when you work from home. 

So here it is folks: my "small" assignment to keep pushing forward in creating. With the exception of one piece, this website is entirely showcasing the work I created while living abroad from March 2015 - June 2016.

Enjoy! 

I will also be launching an arts newsletter, which will highlight different activities in my art career (with some personal life anecdotes as well, because ya know, that's just me.) Please join that newsletter below

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