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  • Writer's pictureDerek J. DiRisio

A New Logo, A New Presence

Updated: Apr 7, 2021

Moving into the Neighborhood of the Arts here in beloved Rochester, NY was just simply not an easy task. Rather, it's been a fight through one of those 'rough patches' of bad luck, when for no meaningful reason at all you'll severely scratch the roof of your leased Honda with a plastic laundry basket (???) or find yourself potentially going bankrupt due to unforeseen circumstances.

I'm no good at blogs. I've had a few over the years and ultimately l'm still lost when it comes to "what do I post where," "which writing style should I use," and "who is going to read this anyway." Today I'm content with discussing these topics here as the first blog post.

This was the plan: I was to move out of the parents' house and into an apartment downtown on October 1st.

That same day, I would have finalized a Rochester Grimoire art show to be hung on the walls at my café, Starry Nites. As the best laid plans generally do fall, one large miscommunication and incompatibility broke my financial stability while still being legally obligated to pay rent for an apartment I would not be moving into.

In a panic to resolve the situation for myself, the Universe continued to kick me where it hurt and with frequency; I've been in this sort of chapter multiple times this year. I think I'm figuring it out.

I'm all moved into the Neighborhood of the Arts now and in a much better situation. I'm surrounded by friends and new family who provide that same Light I've written about in the Eclectic Effect series, that same warmth which has pushed me through Darkness countless times. It's October 7th and I've been the only one sternly pushing and kicking myself to finish this gallery. Everyone else understands the value of hardship, yet I've been so frustrated with myself for not being able to handle more, for somehow attracting this 'bad luck' and being unable to shake it.

In 2016 I've learned a lot about recovery; it's become much simpler compared to emotional turmoils of the past. "I need to chill" has become my mantra for just about any situation of stress; positive or negative; light-hearted or serious; metaphysical or minor. I cannot expect to control a single ounce of this world and that is something worth embracing. It's a privilege to know that this planet I was born into, this Universe is built on edicts of Chaos. I can use that. That can be a means.

'Power' and 'Resilience' are two words which have pushed me through this hardship. It's like the only reasonable response to Chaos and 'bad luck' is to laugh and shout 'I'm going to continue living anyway! Give me all you've got!"

So I put the whole gallery on a credit card and bought a ticket to see Bastille in Toronto on October 5th. Christina and I had a nice dinner of loaded, LOADED nachos and mixed drinks, then fittingly danced and sang our hearts out in celebration of the band's new album, Wild World. Dan Smith appreciated my enthusiasm and pointed me out in the crowd, and the world became a lot smaller. It's moments like that which remind me anything is possible. Amidst all of the shit, I've emerged only a little bit late with an official Rochester Grimoire logo and a beautiful art show. Here, success is my own to define, even with plenty of mistakes.

The logo deserves its own blog post. I've been teaching myself graphic design in Affinity Designer (wonderful program) and I jumped back and forth between options multiple times. I find it tough to relinquish the reigns, especially with Rochester Grimoire, when it comes to assets and different art styles. I cannot paint as far as I know, but if I had to paint for this project, I'd teach myself. I'm so satisfied with this new face for the project, and I'll leave you to ponder its symbolism and philosophy for now.

I can tell you, though, that Walls are there to be broken. Rules need not apply in this Universe of mysticism, and the logo takes on that philosophy as well. This logo is fully adaptable to any topic I write about in the future, and further, the project is adaptable to any art style I choose to pursue. Photography and creative writing are only beginnings. I've been singing, dancing, sketching, designing, baristaing... why stop there?

The art show at Starry Nites is a two-piece. Right when you walk in you'll see the main attraction to your right, a set of 5 grimoire cards in remastered color and reimagined graphics. Their size gives them a presence I've never been able to manifest by posting to Instagram; this art show has made Rochester Grimoire truly tangible. Additionally, you'll find a variety of my favorite photos from 2016 in the back of the café. All pieces are available for purchase (pricing posted soon).

Here, on October 7th, I'm grateful to have asked for help. This past month has been a true test of what it means to become an 'adult,' and if I've learned anything it's that we're all clueless, and most of us are willing to help each other. In a spiritual sense, I've found that asking for a miracle sometimes does bring one, if you're also cultivating an environment for miracles to happen.

Despite the frustration and trip-ups, I'm strongly embracing concepts of grace. Some incomprehensible force continues to push me along, and this is the way it's always been. I'm blessed as well as Rochester Grimoire.

If it costs an estimated $800 to buff out some scratches in this car I'll be giving back in two years time, that is fine. I don't have to worry about it today. All I have is Now and Now is all that matters.

Thanks for reading.

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