2016 Year End Review


10 Highlights (in chronological order)

1. Visiting Borobudur and Prambanan Temple with my Creative Singapore buddies.img_02502. Curated and lead a team of 4 other artists for my second self-run group exhibition “Artists Anonymous: Creative Self-Help”

img_13993. Had an artwork sold at SPRMRKT for $950, which I had originally marked as “not for sale”.

Illustration: PenguinGirl's Seaside Song Session (2016) Watercolor, ink and color pencil on paper, 10 x 10 in., 72dpi

PenguinGirl’s Seaside Song Session (2016)
Watercolor, ink and color pencil on paper, 10 x 10 in.

4. My first selfie posted online and the extremely honest spill-my-guts post that accompanied it.

5. Was one of 3 artists whose artwork was printed as part of the 2016 National Day Special EZ-Link Card Collection.

4_MaryAnn6. First time hosting a walking event with over 70 guests.

7. Shaved off half my head to have a weird haircut (something I never dared to do previously).

img_11298. SEOUL!!! Being in the Affordable Art Fair with Kidari Gallery, and spending time with my Mom in Seoul.

Photo thanks to Kidari Gallery.

9. Being in Singapore’s November Affordable Art Fair with Utterly Art.


10. Curated and organized my second solo exhibition “Dream Party in PenguinLand”


10 Disappointments:

1. Inconsistency and lack of discipline and focus in getting my art career in the direction I want to head into.

2. Couldn’t afford to attend a very interesting program about karmic cycles.

3. Kept dozing off during a full-day meditation retreat because I didn’t sleep enough the night before, and so didn’t learn as much as I could have.

4. My tooth broke (and right at the start of a BBQ dinner).

5. Didn’t make full use of an opportunity to work on my art business with a mentor.

6. Failed to meet some important deadlines for a couple of huge artwork submission opportunities. (I did make it for UOB’s Painting of the Year Award.. but I spent 8 hours the night before starting and somewhat finishing the artwork. Last-minute all-nighters — the story of my life… haiz…)

7. Failed to step up to a bigger self in bringing certain groups together. 

8. Failed to complete the next part of a leadership course (and have to postpone AGAIN…)

9. Lack of effort into better publicity for my second solo exhibition 

10. Didn’t manage to connect with some family members like I wanted to

Illustration: Cage (2016) Watercolor, ink and color pencil on watercolor paper, 5.8 x 8.3 in., 72dpi

3 Game Changers:

1. Getting the opportunity to work with a local gallery. (Intending for solo exhibition with a gallery in 2017!!)

2. A certain conversation in October about Dream vs. Survival. (I’m still figuring this one out. Will write something on this sometime soon).

3. Learning that artists are shamans

Illustration: Shelter (2016), Watercolor, ink and color pencil on paper, 10 x 10 in. 72dpi


3 Things I Focused On:

1. Personal development

2. Learning how to connect and work with others

3. Artistic development. Take a look at my 2016 artistic journey:


3 Things I Forgot:

1. Weekly blog post

2. Consistent and regular exercise

3. Taking up a class, e.g. dance, French…


Reflection – How this informs my plans for next year:

1. Back to that Dream vs. Survival conversation, I realize I’ve been spending quite a bit of energy and resources this year on that Survival part. I believe this year it’s time to work on the Dream part. And how to make this Dream more concrete.

2. Part of making the Dream become real — It’s time to throw myself into my art. Which means I’ll be cutting down on a lot of the social media, marketing, even certain types of commissioned works. It’s time to embrace myself as a fine artist and just MAKE ART!

3. Explore this whole “artist = shaman” thing. (And blog about my findings.)

Painting: Master Penguin's Portal of Possibilities (2016) Acrylic and mixed media on canvas, 20 x 10 in., 72dpi

4. With the artworks I’ll be creating: SUBMIT SUBMIT SUBMIT!!! – Open calls, exhibition calls, local and international galleries.

5. Continue to attend art exhibition openings and events and meet people.

6. Definitely need some extracurricular activity. Perhaps yoga. Perhaps some form of self-defense… Gotta put in more effort to make this commitment for myself!!!

7. Work on building relationships with people who are important to me: family, friends, and collaborators.


About MaryAnn Loo

Visual artist - whimsical paintings and illustrations
Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *