Many years ago, (at least a thousand), I was in a boarding school. My roommate’s mom sent her an Advent Calendar. I had never seen one before, and fell completely in love with it. If you’ve never seen one it’s a picture with 24 little windows that open; one a day from December first through Christmas Eve. Of course in boarding school we used it as a count down to vacation.
A few years later I was living in Germany and there were Advent Calendars everywhere! I sent them to my friends and family all over the place. After we moved back to the states they were a little harder to find. Eventually, after I began doing silk screen prints, I made my first Advent Calendar. I cut all the little windows by hand, put photos and bits of comic books behind, and sent them to a select few.
I would screen print the front, and sometimes the insides. Some I made with rubberstamps and had them photocopied. Year after year, but always only to a select few (cutting those windows was the hard part!). It started a tradition that I continue today.
Then in 2000 I realized that I could send my calendars out one page a day by email! No more windows to cut! The first one was a traditional calendar cut into squares and rectangles.
After that year I started to use my Photoshop skills, and began to tell stories. The first one of these can be found here: http://www.dreamingprinter.com/JourneyAdvent.pdf
In 2004 I realized that I wanted to share my calendar with everyone, not just those who celebrated Christmas, so I extended it through the entire month of December. And in 2005 I began to use my paintings, almost all encaustics, as the images for my calendar.
I have been posting my calendars on my blog – http://dreamingprinter.blogspot.com/– since 2011 so that I will be able to reach more people than I could possibly send emails to. If you like, you can see the 2011 and 2012 calendars there. Once again this year I’ll be posting a daily calendar “page”. On December 1st 2013 the next story begins, at http://dreamingprinter.blogspot.com/!