Thursday, October 30, 2014

How Modest Fly Art? The Unread Speech

For those of you who were at the opening the other night, I gave a speech, and I said that I had a written speech that I wasn't going to read. I thought I'd publish the written speech in my blog in case I forgot to mention anyone or anything else that is most important to me. Well, here it goes...

(Ring Bell to get attention) Hello Everybody! 
Welcome to Modest Fly Art's 5 Year Anniversary!
For those of you who don't know me too well, just yet, my name is Eerren, I am the owner and founder of Modest Fly Art. Of course, I did it with the help of my family and my number 1, my husband. We started Modest Fly Art when I graduated about 6 years ago. We started out with the room next door, which is the office now. This location used to be a locksmith so it needed a lot of work when we rented it out. We built it from floor to ceiling and, all the while, not knowing what we were going to use the space for... I graduated with a Bachelors of Fine Arts from Art Center College of Design in Pasadena and I knew I wanted to create art, see art, and be around art, but I really didn't know what and how it was going to happen. So, we fixed the place up and I started coming to "work" and I just hung out and worked (which in art terms, means drew and painted, etc.) I worked on a couple of freelance jobs here and there, but it was nothing compared to the rent I was paying so I decided to have an art show and I decided to start out with my own work in the beginning. We had our grand opening in October of 2009. I had my pieces framed, my labels, my refreshments, snacks, wine, friends, family, and a few of our community artists came out to see the new "art gallery" in Tujunga. So it was nice. I got a lot of feedback and motivation from that show so I decided to give that feeling to newly graduated artists. New and upcoming artists needed motivation and a space to show their work so that's when I decided to start the gallery. I had one show per month, from solo shows to very small group shows, considering that my space was so small (300 sq. ft. to be exact). I began to get regular submissions in and realized that I was actually a part of something now. People would actually write and email to me and start out by saying "Dear Modest Fly Art" Wow, I thought, This could be something. So, long story short... that's how Modest Fly Art started.. from scratch... As I moved on from show to show, I worked independently, and decided to start teaching. 
I recently heard somewhere that the most important day of your life is the day you're born and the day you figure out why you're here.
I started teaching art about 3 years ago and I had 3 students... 2 brothers who started here on the first day, just because their mom was driving by and saw us, and another from a relative who was trying to help me out and support me. 
Every saturday morning, it was me and the 3 of them. We would sit here and talk about colors, drawing, etc. Sometimes, we'd even go to Baskin Robbins for a snack break. We had one Saturday morning class at 10AM and that was it... 
Well, today, we have 60 plus students at Modest Fly Art. We have 5 plus teachers who love being here and sharing their art knowledge, and we open our doors four days a week... As I say this, I am relieved and so happy that, not only I, but we, my employees, who have become my friends, and, most importantly, my students... We have become family. We learn so much from each other, each and every hour spent here. With every conversation and lesson, we make each other better artists and better, more knowledgeable people for our future.
Modest Fly Art is here to pass on the knowledge of art, but, I have to say that I take so much more away from these kids than they take from me. Each and every student here is special in their own way and they make me humble and happy. One day, one of my students drew a map of Modest Fly, and he said to me, "Ms Iren, when you feel lost, you can just look at my map and find yourself." 
Today, I realize that Modest Fly Art makes a difference in our world, in our future generation.. Today I realize that "today" is the most important day of my life.. Thank you so much for trusting us and for believing in us. (Smile :) ) 

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Today... I turn 30

I don't remember the last time I sat down to write... I don't remember the last time I had time to sit down and do anything. Life has definitely took a turn for the busy, but good busy. I have Nala, who will be 2 years old next month, and Modest Fly has been busy running its art classes 4 days a week, 6 hours a day. All of what goes on in between is more than enough to keep me going without sitting down. I turned 30 today and I thought that this might be a good time to sit down, gather my thoughts, and write again.
Besides a busy lifestyle, consisting of baby's birthdays and working on our teaching curriculum, my life has grown to an adult's now. I have become an official adult! ... And, that's not because I'm 30 now but because my everyday responsibilities and chores have grown to be "adult" important. I am happy though... I have every reason to smile and be kind to the world.
I have everything I need and almost everything I've ever thought I'd ever want. I coexist with my "family" now and I wake up every morning and move at my own pace going on with my day. Not to say that I'm not tired by the time Nala closes her eyes, but I'm fulfilled tired, if you know what that means. It's the feeling you have at the end of your wedding night (or any important event) when your guests leave, or when the baby finally sleeps after a long day at disneyland.
Robin Williams committed suicide a couple of days ago... it was sad news. Sad enough to make me stop and think for a moment about how much we don't know about people and what goes on in their heads. We go about each day assuming we know what people's lives consist of, but we really have no idea.
My point being is, no matter what I have going on in my head, I'm actually happy today.... as I turn 30... I am pretty happy with the past 30 years and I've been lucky compared to many people out there. There is so much going on in my head.. so much that I can't even begin to describe and express, but what truly matters is how you look at your life at the end of the day. The other day I read, "My blood type is BE POSITIVE" No matter how much we feel we deserve and how much luck we think we have, our lives are exactly how we want them to be... how we think of it to be. We are in control of everything that happens for us and to us. We are in control of how we narrate our lives. We can leave the bad stuff out and concentrate on everything that makes us smile. We get one chance to be 25, we get one chance to be 30... we get one chance to be 35, 40... so, at the end of the year, no matter what year, how would you have lived it?
Thinking back to the past 30 years, Nala is the one thing I'm truly proud of... My parents are the one thing I'm truly thankful to... My husband is the one thing I'm incredibly lucky to have... my sister is the one thing I was gifted with... my work is the one thing I am truly passionate about... my thoughts are the one thing that keep me interesting... my feelings are the one thing that make me feel alive... and my family is the one thing that makes me feel so happy today. Today... as I turn 30, I am truly happy.