rachel.pohl rachel.pohl

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R A C H E L P O H L A R T  ⚘ Be well and do good work ᐤ Married to @charles_post ➵ “A-Frame Alpenglow” Hat ⇓

People these days really love shortcuts. Googling instead of reading books. YouTube instead of asking mentors for help. Geo tags instead of maps. Overnight shipping instead of waiting. Fast fashion over well-made goods. Fast food over home cooked meals. Diet pills instead of nutrition + exercise. Buying something now instead of experiencing something in the future.
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I’m not convinced that having the world at our finger tips is purely good and simple efficient. Buying all of this time has actually given us less of it.
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We’re so used to having the answers in an instant, that we have forgotten the pleasure of discovering things for our own. We’ve forgotten how to wonder, to work really hard, to read an encyclopedia or a topographic map. We’ve forgotten how to do so many things our brains love to do. Namely, think.
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Really, what we’re cutting out is intention. We’re undercutting creativity, process, patience, knowledge, and human connection. We’re robbing ourselves of joy by needing (and getting) to know everything right now. We’re forgetting how much goes into each bite of food and each piece of information we consume. We’re ignorant of the importance eco-consciousness, forgetting that *connection* in so many cases is not global thinking- but the opposite. And we’re writing off SLOW and MYSTERIOUS in favor of what’s new and fast and up to date.
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I challenge you to really think about the shortcuts you take in your own life, and make changes that bring you back down to earth.
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Ask questions (and not just the shortcut ones.) Read books. Do research. Buy something hand made. Better yet, MAKE something with your own hands. Learn to cook a new recipe. Eat locally. Walk really far. Learn what makes your body feel good. Meander around until you know what’s best for you, what makes your heart sing, not what some billion dollar company or some shortcut thinking told you to do. You are an autonomous being and your choices count, not just for you but for the planet. Make good ones, and for goodness sake, enjoy the process.
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Photo from a recent snowy walk with @charles_post

This time of year can be challenging- and this year has been no exception. One of my friend’s mom recently passed away, another just lost two grandmas, my dear friend’s sweet dog is in critical condition, and it seems like everyone is getting sick.
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But as I’ve been reflecting on recently, sometimes when things are less than ideal we more fully appreciate the good moments. I’ve been having a lovely time creating more than I have in months, and continuing to manifest the PNW trip I’m so excited about through the process of painting.
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@charles_post, our friends, and and I have been getting outside, going to hot springs, eating healthy, home-cooked meals, staying in Forest Service cabins, and I’ve been painting a lot.
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What do you do to stay inspired, positive, and to practice self care??
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Here’s one of the pieces I just completed!! “Mt Hood Reflections,” acrylic on reclaimed barn wood has sold, but prints are coming soon!! ! Thanks for sharing your thoughts about what I should make these into!!
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I hope all of you are having a good week. I hope if you’re like me and things are a bit hard in this transitional time of year, that you take a moment to reflect on what brings you joy and then pursue that.
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#PNW #trillium #trilliumlake #mounthood #rachelpohlart #originalartwork #pacificnorthwest #painteveryday

Six weeks ago, my debut as a podcast guest on @balancedpursuits went live. I finally listened to it this morning.

I have lots of excuses for why I hadn’t listened to it until now, like “I got married” and “I’ve been working on a huge project and I’ve been outside a lot.” But the real reason is that I am my own worst critic.

For most, insecurities can arise from seeing photos + watching videos of ourselves, and hearing our voices recorded is no exception. And insecurities certainly arose before listening to the podcast. “What if I said the wrong thing?” “What if people don’t like me anymore because of what I said?”

I know how fragile I sound in those thoughts, but it’s the honest truth. But you know what? I am SO honored to share my path. It doesn’t really matter if I felt a flicker of insecurity about how my voice sounded. Or if I rambled in the *wrong* direction. Or if people thing what I write is ____(insert insecure adjective here)____.

Above all, it doesn’t really matter if something you share online or in real life is interpreted differently than you intended. Because we all being our own world views to the table. If even ONE PERSON is positively impacted by something you put out into the world, something created with a genuine and open heart, it will be worth it a thousand times over.

I’m proud to be a part of the new @balancedpursuits Podcast. There are some incredible humans that two of my childhood heroes @Krisyleskinen and @jenhudak interview on the show! I just subscribed and I’m excited to listen to all of them.

In my episode I talk about chasing dreams, (almost) summiting Denali, and about how things worth doing are usually a suffererfest. If you have time today, give it a listen and let me know your thoughts! I hope you enjoy our conversation, link is in my bio!

Very happy mountain portrait by my husband @charles_post !! #rachelpohlart #balancedpursuits #podcast #empowerment #dreamjob #liveoutdoors #creativehappylife

I am blown away by how much all of you appreciate this one. I painted it with so much joy, just for fun, and turns out many of you really connected with it. The universe has been reminding me to take myself less seriously and to play a bit more, and this painting is no exception. There is magic in simplicity.
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The original is being sent off to its new home today, but I’m excited to announce that prints are up on my site! Link is in my bio!
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Enjoy 15% off all sizes of “Blue Baker” by using the code BAKER15 at checkout!!Plus, all of my 40+ sticker designs ship free this week too!
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These prints have a white boarder framing the rounded edges I sanded out on the original.
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Thanks for being my community + always being so kind + helpful. It really motivates me to share my work. I truly couldn’t do what I’m doing without all of you, so thank you!!
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#mountainart #pnw #rachelpohlart #creativehappylife #acrylics #painteveryday #dreamjob #livingthedream #baker #pacificnorthwest #originalartwork #volcano

One of my favorite things about @charles_post beyond his endless kindness + patience, is that he tells stories that truly matter.

So much of what we see in the outdoor industry today is about looking cool in a pretty place. What Charles creates is a refreshing departure from that. He cares deeply about wildlife and the environment, that the focus of his work is always on conservation. He isn’t afraid to tell real stories about people who are making a difference, like raptor biologists monitoring the health of our skies. Charles utilizes his storytelling platforms to discuss imperiled ecosystems and threatened wildlife, when others simply talk about how pretty the landscape is or how neat the animal looks. Because life isn’t superficial, it’s complicated and being aware of the magic ordinary people are bribing about every day is so important.

Charles and our friends @max.lowe and @forestwoodward just partnered with @rei to release “Sky Migrations,” a 15 minute film following a slice of the raptor migration through the desert southwest. @charles_post also happens to be the main character and I’m so excited for you to get to know him better though watching it!!

For those of you who have seen it already in the @banffmountainfestival (or in one of half-dozen other festivals) I hope you loved it. If you haven’t seen “Sky Migrations” yet, check out @charles_post’s bio link and let me know what you think!!

I am so incredibly proud of you Charles, for telling stories about people and topics that will help write the future of conservation. Our kids are going to be very lucky to have a dad who cares so much about this beautiful planet. You inspire me every day Charles!! We’re so lucky you share your perspectives with us!!

#rei #wildlifeconservation #skymigrations #naturefilm #scienceiscool #dreamjob #creativehappylife #gooutside #exploreandcreate #passionproject

I believe that the images and ideas we surround ourself with can affect our reality. Putting out our intentions to the world, alongside action, can manifest our dreams.

Maybe that’s why I can’t stop painting some of the places I’ve been missing- like the PNW. It’s like I’m trying to tell the universe to please let me make it out there soon. I’ve literally tried 7 times in the last two years to make it out to the Washington and Oregon coast but things keep coming up.

I’ve spent the past week working on some reclaimed barn wood pieces, and can’t wait to share the others with you! This one is “Blue Baker” and reminds me of road trips taken to the coast from Montana with friends back in college.

What do you think of this new piece? Should I make stickers? Cards? Prints? Wallets? Should I paint more of these? I’d love to hear your thoughts!

The original is sold but prints are now coming soon, thanks to your enthusiasm!! #pnw #mountbaker #mountain #mountainart #rachelpohlart #pnwonderland

If we hold the idea of impermanence in our hearts, we can be more kind, wise, and forgiving.
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We can also fall into despair if we dwell on how fast time goes + how fragile human existence is, but I’m talking about having a healthy appreciation of the sacredness of time.
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Most things in life aren’t worth fretting over. We tend to get caught up in very small details, make mountains out of molehills, and take certain things too seriously. I am so guilty of all of this. We look at *greener* grass and think about ways to change where we are. In some cases, that’s absolutely what we should be doing. And there are situations to be taken very seriously. But in terms of those little superficial things... looking back, we often thing fondly of the times (ones we were maybe even trying to move past), and don’t remember those silly little details.
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Really take a moment to let it sink in that each and every day is special, and will never exist again. Each season, each chapter, each heartbreak, happens for a reason. Also realize that at any moment we could be gone, an our loved ones could be too. Nothing is guaranteed, and it’s up to us to find the joy in every day, even in the really tough ones. Treat yourself well and remember that you do deserve the good things that happen to you- because if not now, then when?
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With such a mindset, forgiveness will come more easily. Empathy will blossom. Appreciation for the seasons of our lives with strengthen. We’ll remember that one day what we’re living right now may be the good old days. And we will stand up for ourselves more, because we will know deep in our hearts that this is our one shot at life, and we deserve to be treated well.
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Yesterday marked one year of losing our friend Inge, and today, her boyfriend Hayden. Words still cannot describe their loss. They probably never will. But the absence of friends, and the loss of chapters of our lives, reminds us of how we can live better and to really appreciate people. Because being alive is so special, and we have one shot at it. Cherish it, love others, and above all, be kind to everyone, especially yourself.
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Photo by my sweet husband @charles_post

You guys!!! I am delighted to share a video about one of favorite trips ever, to one of our favorite places- Whistler! Click the link in my bio to check it out!
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We skied powder with hung with our friend + artist @vanessastarkart, admired paintings by the late @chilithomstudio and overall had the best time!! I hope you enjoy “The Art of Mountain Culture.”
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@matadornetwork @gowhistler #OnlyInWhistler #mountainart #mountainculture #rachelpohlart
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This is “The Tusk,” my #whistler inspired painting!!

Our first few weeks of marriage have been awesome. They have also been a reminder that dreaming big is important, but so are taking small moments to just be together and appreciate one another.
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I don’t know about you, but I don’t wake up every single day feeling like everything is perfect. I have anxieties and faults, fears and insecurities. I am human. Maybe from the outside it seems like a person’s life can seem pretty great, the reality is life is always going to be a bit challenging.
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Love is a choice every morning. So is patience and so is kindness. I think being married to someone is the ultimate test of not only love, not just commitment, but of awareness of the impermanence of it all. Even when life gets full of details, inconveniences, and frustrations, it’s still pretty neat.
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When you commit to a lifetime with somebody, you are acknowledging that despite all the challenges that life brings, being together is precious. That each day is special and we can choose to be patient and gracious, or we can choose to be stubborn and *right.*
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I hope that you have found love. Or that you find love, and hold onto it. I hope that you work daily on gratitude, and realize how precious life is. I hope that you have friendships that last a lifetime, and know deep in your heart that you are special and loved.
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Photo by @shannonvandivier Flowers by me 𖥧⚘𖥧 #chooselove #creativehappylife #choosehappiness

I am so excited and proud to share, at long last, my bison painting.
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One year ago I started this painting. It was not the complexity of subject matter that lead me to drag out its completion for so long. But rather the complexity of my mind, all tied up in stories bound to this piece of wood blanketed in layers of colored pigment.
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Last September I started a bison painting. It had light ultramarine mountains and a bison standing in an ocre, frost-drenched field. Shortly after, a friend passed away in an avalanche. On the way out the door to her memorial service, my beloved painting fell off its easel and a huge hole ruptured in the middle.
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This story sound familiar to a few of you who were around last year, but for those who are unfamiliar- let me tell you, this this was a truly devastating moment. It was of course more about the loss of the friend than of the painting, but it hit me hard.
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But I started anew. I changed the color palate half a dozen times. I found it hard to let go of the last painting I did while my parents were still together, and my friend was alive. It’s weird how objects and processes become weighed down by what’s happening around them. For a while I couldn’t even look at this piece because of the memories it conjured up.
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In the 19th century, bison were nearly wiped out. Herds that once took three days to pass on horseback dwindled to about 100 individuals in the 1880’s. But now our National Mammal is alive and well, and thanks to conservation efforts there are about 500,000 wild bison today.
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It seems fitting that my destroyed painting was of a bison. And that through great effort it has risen again, out of the ashes of emotional devastation. This painting has been part of my healing process. And now it is bright green and full of life, and ready to adorn the walls of those who believe in what is wild and free. This painting is more than just a landscape with wildlife, it’s about determination, conservation, and resilience. I hope you enjoy “Big Sky Bison.” It kind of means everything to me.
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Link to prints in bio. #rachelpohlart #mountainart

I’ve been resisting the completion of this painting for just shy of a year. This piece has grown and changed so much in the past 12 months, just as I have. It started out as an autumnal piece, then to a mid summer scene, then I changed the color palate again. All things come full circle. Within its layers are particles of dust kicked up by bison in Colorado, stories of loss and love, memories of painting in this field in Montana, and of course the wild spirit of the West. It’s going to be hard to let this one go, but I’m ready to be finally finished with it.
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I’ve always struggled with resolution, with moving on. If I’m sentimentally attached to something, I’ll keep it around even if it burdens me. If I had my way, days would be 50 hours long and seasons would last a year. I’ve always been slow to sink into the feeling of something and just as I’m fully in one moment, the next is upon me. Maybe some of you can relate, to that feeling of wishing you could just make time stand still, and not have all of this pass by so fast.
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Painting is the one place I can control time, in a way. I can keep living in the place I’m painting. But I couldn’t control my parents divorce or the death of a friend, both of which happened right as I was beginning this painting, and right when the first version of it fell if my easel and broke (the second image shows that painting).
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Life is full of beginnings and inevitably of endings too. This time of year reminds us of that, as I personally cling to summer, confused as to where it went. But we never know if the next chapter is going to be more amazing than the last unless we leap into it with an open heart. I am ready for a new chapter, one without the very personal reminders of the past year. Whomever takes this original home will be investing in a legacy of stories. It won’t just be a painting you’ll hang on your wall, but a very powerful piece that has travelled so far and helped me heal in the most beautiful ways. More details on what this piece means, on prints, and a full image of the “Big Sky Bison” coming early next week!
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Photos by my biggest inspiration, @charles_post #rachelpohlart #mountainart

Being busy has become his badge of honor. As if having your days crammed with work or recreation and your year stacked with trips is somehow good and healthy. Being busy has become a form of currency that we compare ourselves to others with. Busy= successful, right?

Well I’d like to challenge that notion. I’d like to point out that when we’re too busy to notice our success or let happy moments linger, we lose something. Being busy is also another form of suppressing feelings we need to deal with, ignoring problems, and not actually spending time with loved ones. “Being busy” can also come from wanting to make more than we really actually need to be happy and get by. Of course, being stressed about time and money are real psychological and physiological detriments, but I’m talking about being *busy* as a culturally desirable trait. Busyness can also mean living life to the fullest but it should not be a competition to see how busy you are stacked up against others.

So my goal for the coming months, when people ask me what I’ve been up to is to NOT say I’m busy, and be able to mean that. Life is supposed to be enjoyed, not forgotten immediately after we’ve done something as it gets pushed out by the next pressing matter. I’m going to do less, enjoy more, and work smarter not just harder. We all work plenty hard enough.

We spent our recent *minimoon* looking at this view. The “Emigrant Peak” original has sold, but prints are available, link in bio. #rachelpohlart #emigrantpeak #sagelodge #mountainart #yellowstone #yellowstoneriver #painteveryday

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