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2021; The Year of the Noggin'



Tomorrow is the final day of 2021 and my heart is full of pure gratitude while in reflection to all the things this year has brought. If you look at 2021 through the eyes of the headlines and news you may be missing the majority of the beautiful things the year brought our way. That is why I choose to highlight 10 moments of the year through the eyes of the head noggin of our incredible movement powered by people like YOU, the reader of this blog!


1) E.A.S.T.

East Austin Studio Tour showed up in 2021 in a big way! I suppose the hiatus in 2020 had the organizers inspired to bring Austin the art experience they were missing and that is exactly what happened. I was honored to be invited to participate in the Pietsch House Showcase at Calton Cases and in the Almost Real Things Live event at Walls Unite.

Both showcases were full of Austin art, local music, creative magic and all the beauty that happens when creatives unite their brilliance. A note to the wise, in 2022 do not sleep on Pietsch House and Almost Real Things, I cannot wait to continue partnering with these local collectives bringing humans near and far the beauty of art in a magnitude of ways.



2) Austin Monthly

This summer Austin Monthly highlighted Knockin' Noggins in their August issue. Austin Monthly is known as a guide to life in Austin. They highlight things to do, where to eat, and highlight issues, trends, ideas and people catalyzing the city.


Since i've relied on Austin Monthly for the better part of a decade to keep up in the happenings of Austin, you can imagine, is was a bit surreal flipping through the issue and seeing "It's a Trip" showcased in all her glory!





3) The Basketball Court Mural

I absolutely love painting helmets and do it quite often as you probably have seen but sometimes I use a bigger canvas to showcase my art and this year i went big... really big! I completed my largest mural to date this fall on an outdoor Basketball Court in North Austin.

Measuring 2/3 the size of a regulation professional court, this project stretched my brain of what was possible and pushed my creative capacity and I loved every moment of it. Amanda and I worked together to draw up the concept and then she let me loose to creatively explode her backyard.


4) Armadillo Art Bazaar

2021 also brought back Austin's longest standing fine art holiday bazaar The Armadillo Art Bazaar. After years of admiration, we were honored to join the family! Every year Since 1976 Armadillo brings together incredible music and handmade gorgeousness in such a uniquely beautiful way! I was blessed to be joined the entire weekend by my father who helped educate all who passed by on how we are destroying the helmet stigma one badass design at a time. We are thrilled to be part of the Armadillo family and join them each year at the show!


5) KXAN

KXAN ran a story and wrote an article highlighting the mission of Knockin' Noggins for all to see!

Talk about another out of body experience. Hearing the news anchor share personal details and watching the upticks on social engagement was a pretty cool & surreal moment for me. Each piece of press humbles me to the soul. I pinch myself each and every day to be blessed and supported enough to continue creating as my career and life's calling.


6) 80 helmets

From Austin to Chicago to Scottsdale Arizona. On to Iowa, San Fransisco, Missouri, Colorado Springs, San Diego, Denver, Houston and Canada and many places between. We’ve sent helmets across the country to protect over 80 noggins this year. I painted each helmet by hand with intentions to bring to life stylish safety just for the noggin the helmet was intended for. 8 of those 80 helmets were donated through our 1 for 10 Promise.



7) 1 for 10 Promise

Thanks to the purchasers of every single helmet this year we were able to create and donate 8 helmets to children in need. I can say with 100% certainty, one of my personal yearly highlights was creating and delivering the personalized helmets to the children through this promise! We partner with a local children's home to indicate littles who don't have access to much but thanks to YOU these 8 children now have something of their very own to add style, safety and joy to their lives!


8) Surfboards + Bear Boxes


This spring I took my creating to the road and embarked on a journey for a few months in the beautiful state of California. Between helmet orders, I painted my first surfboard on the Pacific coast and then a set of bear boxes at a private residence in Lake Tahoe California. The beautiful landscape of California and positive juices from the pacific ocean swelled me up and brought out some art that was pure joy translated to art. I am always down for custom projects. If you have something in mind, start here.


9) Designs Galore

2021 challenged me creatively in the best ways by creating custom designs for many different personalities and like snowflakes each persons style really is unique. I'm often asked which designs are my favorite and like a proud mother there is no way I can pick one but here are a few unique designs I'm pretty stoked on how they turned out.


10) Making it through 2021 Stronger and Excited for 2022

2021 was challenging at times from cancelled art shows to contracting Covid to the ups and downs we all experienced together and yet the downfalls were the minority of the year. Thank you for following along on our journey and allowing us to grow together, I am so excited to continue this journey with you in 2022! I wish you a beautiful new year full of adventure, excitement and much badassery along the way.


XOXO

Leah




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