excuse me while i wax poetic on the internets

i'm gonna pull a granny moment on you, OK?  i remember when there was no internet. when email was a novelty that you checked once a week - not once every 10 minutes. oh the world pre-facebook, instagram and so many other social media/need to be on sites [flickr anyone?]. i'm constantly inundated with young-ins who know nothing else but this - and it makes me realize how fast the world is actually changing. need to fact check? google it immediately. i'm so so guilty of this. i whip out my phone to check when a store is open, where the closest UPS drop off box is, when the next BART train to san francisco is. in class when i can't remember an artist's name exactly and i have to tell and show the student about said artist - BANG - there it is.


i also remember when the online crafty blog world was tiny. we all read AND COMMENTED on one another's blogs - it feels like the good old days [yes we walked 10 miles in the snow to school]. we drank our morning coffee and said "hello" to each other. we showed and shared meaningful snippets of what we were making and thinking and got inspired by one another - we cheered each other on. in a way this is all still true, but i'd be lying if i said things were the same. as things grew we made friends with our friends friends, and slowly but surely it turns out that everyone now NEEDS a blog. that it has become part of the whole trending and marketing scheme that creatives participate in. it is impossible now to read everyone and everything - let alone comment. sometimes looking online becomes an overwhelming feast for the eyes and instead of inspiring me, it freezes me up - making me think oh i don't know if i can make anything as pretty or meaningful as what i just saw... plus so many of us are so busy now [a good yay we are doing what we love, but life is crazy full busy kind of busy] that we don't have the time to troll around online like we used to. 

but the last week/weekend i got to hang out with people. REAL LIVE people - some from far away and some who live mere blocks from me. and i would not have met these people if it were not for the internet. seriously - every. single. one. of. them. and i constantly marvel at how the internet has allowed me to meet like-minded makers. it still acts as a filter - i just know i will get along with certain people because of the photos they post, the prose they write, the things they make.


i don't think i have ever had a bad first meet up with someone that i've met online. and even more important, many many of these people are my go to people now. they have kids - i ask them mom advice, i've watched their kids grow up before my very eyes. i have drawings, and prints, and photos, and poems, and memories with them. we have collaborated on projects, had wonderful phone chats, ate amazing meals, laughed until we cried. we have shared business advice, material advice, planting advice, they speak to my classes and allow my students into their studios, and there is jam [ok i've never made any jam, but other people have given me jam they've made and for that i am grateful].

what's more if i go to a city - most likely i'll know someone there. or i have more reason to GO places [there are so many places on this list]. so internet, as much as i grumble about you and how you've changed and how yes there are many annoying aspects about things and people online, ultimately i still owe you a big thank you.

most of the photos above were taken with my new 50mm lens who someone [who i wouldn't know except for the internet] convinced me to get. i was at the ferry building and the alameda flea market hanging out with all kinds of people that i only know because of the online world. 

here's my little and hula's big playing together. i get teary when i think about the first time i met andrea i was actually pregnant [but didn't know it yet] and we had breakfast with ava and ezra who were SO WELL BEHAVED and cute. and i have an amazing drawing that ava sent to me when she was about 7? and ezra's cooler than cool monster drawing is on the cover of my book. makes me happy. 

and speaking of online pals. i got to meet up with artist sonya philip the other day - and her studio tour is on poppytalk


annamaria said…
I so agree with you. It is sometimes very overwhelming , granted, but absolutely amazing too- the internet wonder! For someone like me who is naturally too shy, this is heaven. I can write and communicate from my cave;)...Enjoy;)
ronnie said…

ps if you live a long way from anywhere (like I do) the internits is a lifeline... sure its not always perfect, sometimes the line gets caught around your neck and threatens to strangle you - but at other times you know that its keeping you from drowning all alone in murky waters....
Suzy said…
Lovely post, and beautiful photos. I have had a very similar experience, I kind of miss the "old days" when I knew all the craft blogs, but blogging has brought me a group of wonderful local friends who share my rather anti-social hobbies of sewing and knitting, and who I would never have found otherwise. For that I am so grateful.
Anonymous said…
thanks for such a poignant reminder of how blessed you are to have much to give to/share with others as well as to receive so much from them! Let's hope your little grows up to learn and experience the same things about herself and the world...whatever the latter might be like in 25 years.
you explained it so well, lisa. i hope our paths cross some day, too. xo.
Blair said…
I am right there with you! When I was writing my book, if I spent just 5 minutes on the internet I would feel completely overwhelmed and usually start crying (feeling like I was trying so hard, yet there wasn't a single new thing out there). But I would lose it if it weren't for friends out there (like you!) who are out there, like me, making their creative life happen just like me. Glad you guys had a great day!!
Hi. Yes I agree, it is overwhelming, and sometimes there's just so much to see, that like you, I also get sort of stopped in my tracks and overwhelmed. It's like you have to be more mindful of the sites you join and the blogs you follow, only because there is so much out there (a lot of it good, maybe not, yet different sites resonate with different people)....

But for me, what really struck a cord was how you mentioned younger kids now-a-days and how this is all they know! I still don't know if this is good! Here's my granny moment too, lol: I'm only 31, but I remember growing up and knowing peoples numbers by heart (no cell phones, no computers in the house). I remember it was normal for everyone in school to write notes to each other in class and keep group journals you'd pass around. Now they're probably all just texting each other. There was more meaningful interaction with those kids you connected with, and those friends who got you, not just everyone you know but don't care about trolling each other on facebook, as it seems they do now-a-days. Then again it would've been cool to blog in high school with my friends.

Okay, that's my tangent. Thanks for sharing.
This totally resonates with me, Lisa...on ALL levels. Things have changed so, so much online, and with the blogging camaraderie we used to feel/have, I'm not sure for the better, but of course where would we be without iphones and googlemaps... literally...lost ;)

It's the two sides of the coin, I guess.

I am so grateful for you!

One day we will get a re-run of our planned SF meet! ;) XOXO
Kathryn said…
Such an awesome and true post, Lisa! I have that same love/hate but really love relationship with all these crazy changes that have happened because of the internet. And one of the upsides is meeting you and Katrina and ... the list goes on and on. Still working on connecting with Sonya, soon! In the meantime, I just succumbed to a new phone. Afraid to pick it up just yet. Instagram was downloaded first of course!
andrea said…
yes, yes, yes. every word of this, yes. found myself nodding my head over and over. and then I got to the last part-- the part where the internet friends are now the really real friends, the part where we got to hang out and it made me really really happy.

I'm so glad we found each other's blogs way back when (2005? 2006?), so glad our paths crossed, that we're real life friends. so, so glad. xo
Sonya Philip said…
Hi there online pal! Late to the party, but I wanted to say I loved this post. I never really thought of it in the context of everyone having a blog, but that's really what's happened. I really don't read as many as I once did. And so true about meeting blog friends. Lovely people. Though it's sometimes strange to meet up since they might once have been blog friends, but no longer blog, so it's twitter contacts etc. Tracing the on-line lineage. Funny.
Anonymous said…
I am NOT a blogger because I do not believe I have much to say that 'the world' out there would find worthwhile. But I do use email to communicate with my loved ones and close friends whom I care about. And I also enjoy reading this and a few other blogs because it allows me to get 'to know' aspects of your, and other people's, ideas about work, life, etc.
Katrina said…
oh so good. you are so right. i will keep my grumbles to myself. i will find time to keep reading blogs and commenting too. yes and yes. because you are right. as much as i get overwhelmed by all the amazing creative work out there. and the amazing people. and the constant update of amazingness. if i didn't have my blog and read your blog i would not be tucking your little f's too small pjs into my little m's "still too big" box. sigh. real friends. lucky me. xoxo.

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