January 02, 2016
New Year’s Resolution #2: Step out of my comfort zone. I love playing in my colorful world, creating art. However most things about the “business” of art resemble work, and I have to sell my art to be able to afford to continue creating more art. This means pushing past my comfort zone into the business of art, in order to move forward.
In truth, many things connected to my art take me out of balance. I love nature, but through the window. When I think of my art workspace, I imagine sunlight spilling in through the roof and lots of windows. In my imagination, my studio looks much like a view of outside. My art studio (or workshop) is actually in a basement with low ceilings and zero natural sunlight. When I’m working, I really do have to go into my own world.
It took me a long time to call myself an artist. I felt that ‘real’ artists studied art history, drew and sketched, attended specialized art schools. For twenty years, I worked for the airlines and I certainly didn’t study art in college! Though I spent years working in interior design, I cannot draw or sketch. Sharing my work makes me nervous, as if somebody with that art degree might say this or that is wrong. When I ship a piece to a distant land, I hold my breath and hope that it pleases the buyer, is what they expected. And yet, my clients are always thrilled with my product and many are repeat customers.
Going into 2016, I am going to (mostly) follow expert advice for having an art business; I’m sharing my story, letting you in. But I need to do it authentically. I can't create a fairy tale artist story that will make you oooh and aaah. I’ve got to tell you that the basement is scary because the building sits by a large field and there are BIG BUGS!!! I HATE bugs. The only way I’ll go there to work on my art is if I drag my husband along to exterminate. Thankfully, I am crazy in love with him and bugs fear him.
In my workspace, I go to the imaginary, light filled place that exists in my head, and always there is Contemporary Christian music surrounding me. Not far away, my husband blasts Nine Inch Nails while he works on his own projects. Not exactly the stuff of fairy tales! But it works for us. And it’s my story and I AM an ARTIST because the art has to come out. It must seep onto the canvas regardless of the light in my studio, the spider near the stairwell, or whether I hold an art degree. The art is inside of me. I can’t explain it, or where it comes from. It just is.
New Year’s Resolution #1: Diet and Exercise. Same as the past 40+ years! Diet and exercise are two of my oldest ‘friends.’ I don’t plan to fight my body; it’s more that I need to put a bit of effort into looking after it with healthy eating and a little bit more moving around. In order to create art and build my business, I have to care for the body that houses the artist.
Happy New Year Lofters,