I was sitting at my desk today going through my files when I heard the comforting (and still distracting) “ping” of an email notification on my computer. I was carefully labeling my files in long hand, and struggled to place my block letters in the space provided. My sharpie smudged. Oh well. At least I’d spelled “receipts” right.
I turned to my email and saw the subject line first, in all CAPS:
WEHO ARTIST GRANT APPLICATION_JARED FORTUNATO
My heart skipped a beat. Cliché. And it did. Definitely stopped breathing for a second. I opened the email and started scanning, steeling my heart for possible disappointment.
I’d applied for a WeHo Artist Grant a few months ago, back in October, and had been waiting ever since to hear back. My proposal was based on the idea of a “Portrait of West Hollywood, an exhibition that explores the beauty and diversity of the city and its people.” My goal for the project was to celebrate my home, this little spot in the world that gave me comfort and support during some difficult times.
I knew it’d take a bit of time, so I’d remember to forget about it and go about my business.
Luckily, the person on the other end of the email must have some experience with artists and their fragile egos, for the first line was: