ABOUT Under 1000 Skies Blog Our blog under1000skies is about connecting homeless creatives to each other and to the world. We showcase daily M-F photos, artwork and/or poetry on the website, social media and in our daily email. We also have gallery shows about twice a year. About once a month, we interview and honor those who serve homeless creatives (“Spotlight Saturday”). Some statistics claim that over 90 percent of us are only 2 paychecks away from being homeless. We believe there is no “us” and “them;” only “us.” Connection keeps us strong.
This blog began on November 11, 2014 on my personal blog, Niki Flow after a conversation on Twitter with author Laurence O’Brien. Niki Flow- It begins with me. O’Brien shared an article by Christopher Taylor called “Social Cleansing of the Homeless.” This term “Social cleansing” was an unfamiliar one, and the article was horrifying. When I responded his tweet, O’Brien invited me to do something about it. I’m an agoraphobic with panic disorder. The irony of my situation was not lost on me, but I wanted to help. I was homeless for a short time. After two days, the pain levels from living and sleeping outside were ridiculous — and I was a teenager at the time. So this has always been something close to my heart. Some of my friends in cities around the country agreed to accept the artist packs my family and I put together to distribute in their area. Each pack includes a disposable camera, a warm scarf (for winter; baseball cap in summer) waterproof notebook, pens, lip balm, gum and a waterproof carry pouch. I have learned that our connection to each other is critical to healing our lives and to finding a way back. I believe creativity is where we meet the best, most unfiltered parts of ourselves which we rarely show the world in our daily lives. When we play and create together, we connect deeply and really *see* each other. That was my dream. What grew from that has been connection to some of the most beautiful people I have ever met.