Until 2 days ago, I had been traveling with three close friends in Peru to gain reference photos and inspiration for new work. This was before COVID-19 was declared a Worldwide Pandemic and when we left there were only 5 cases in our state and only 6 reported cases in Peru. While abroad, we visited Machu Picchu, enjoyed the local culture, and overall had a wonderful trip until the effects of the global pandemic were very suddenly and stressfully made apparent. On the evening of March 15th, two days before our intended departure, the Peruvian government declared an immediate closure of its borders for 15 days. The four of us each had work and families that were waiting for us back home in the states and now we were facing a minimum of 15 days until we would be rejoined with them. Unpredictably facing two weeks in a foreign nation where you speak very little of the language, with no apparent way home and no secure place to stay is a really scary, stressful situation. We were given 24 hours notice to try to leave, and during this time our family, friends, and even our congressional representative made use of every second to find us a way back. By an absolute miracle, we were able to fly out literally minutes before the mandatory shutdown, and the four of us are now safely back at home under a precautionary self-quarantine. While scary, we were able to come home safely and there are countless numbers of other people who haven’t been so lucky. There are people trapped in various countries, people who are sick, and people who are dying. This virus has effected so many and continues to do so in serious and lasting ways. I know the world is crazy right now, but I urge everyone to exercise compassion during this difficult time. We all need to follow the guidelines outlined by WHO and the CDC but we also need to come together emotionally to support and empathize with one another. If we do that then we will make it through this together. If you have a neighbor who might need groceries, if you have family who might need financial assistance, if you see strangers just trying to get back home, we all need to do what we can and help people in need. Now more than ever.
There have been many rapid changes that have been implemented in the past weeks, but we want to assure you that Katy Lipscomb LLC will continue to provide our products, services, and a new drawing every single day! We are still shipping orders and we are researching delayed shipping options for customers who might not currently be able to receive mail. We are also continuing to accept and process commission requests. Unfortunately (but ultimately for the best), many of our planned events and conventions have been cancelled or postponed. As of now, Furry Weekend Atlanta 2020 and Akon 2020 are cancelled. We’re keeping track of whether Momocon 2020 might be rescheduled for later in the year. We’re currently planning on attending Holiday Matsuri 2020 in December but will notify everyone if those plans change. With many events and social outings cancelled for everyone, we know that home entertainment is critically needed right now. To combat this, we are working to compile a free-to-everyone digitally downloadable coloring book featuring many different artists (more on this will be announced soon). We are also working to schedule regular Instagram Live videos and tutorials. This has been and will continue to be a very strange year but together we will all be able to get through it.
I am currently symptom free and have placed myself under a strict self-quarantine for 14 days while working from home. I personally can not thank all of you enough for the continued support and for all of the love that you inspire us to give. Stay calm, stay careful, and stay compassionate.