Sara Hanlon

Sara Hanlon captioned this piece, “You stay put until I say you can go.”

There are several versions of artists. What I am is professional “studio fine arts.”

I am an independent, and it is my life’s career. I also teach art through community education, senior centers and private instruction. All classes have been canceled. I provide digital services for a local printer, but no new orders. The exhibition space where my art is on display has no visitors. I have no custom framing orders.

A huge dent in my income. Yet the bills keep coming.

There are different forms of “art making.” The more common we see are more on a commercial level, using technology as the format. This is possibly the only sector that is still working, from home. Finished work can be scanned and emailed.

There are “hobby artists” that make art for their own entertainment — a gift to family members and to sell at art fairs. But no art fairs until the virus scare is over.

As for other members within the arts: musicians and actors are experiencing canceled performances.

Our economy, or rather lack thereof, due to quarantine, is causing financial hardship in many sectors. The people sent away from their source of livelihood under the word of “furlough” (meaning you still have a job, but with no pay), are as much a victim as one who actually is sick.

Speaking for myself, it feels like punishment. Through no fault of our own, we have been sent away from our work. Like a bad child made to sit in the corner, until someone says “OK you can go now.” And when will that be?

Decades of statistics show poverty generates crime and suicides due to isolation. Is that what we also have to look forward to as we continue to impoverish our workforce?

Sara L. Hanlon is a Chaska artist and her business is The Art of Sara Lee Hanlon. She received her bachelor of fine arts from the Minneapolis College of Art and Design and teaches through Eastern Carver County Schools Community Education. Her cat is a huge tuxedo named Squeaky. She can be reached at theartofsaraleehanlon@gmail.com or 952-221-6535.

Community Editor

Mark Olson, the Chaska and Chanhassen community editor who has worked in Carver County for 20 years, makes any excuse to write about local history. In his spare time, Mark enjoys perusing old books, watching blockbusters and taking Midwest road trips.

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