I returned from my retreat late Monday night. I wasn't supposed to come home until Tuesday morning, but I already had too many wet paintings to precariously fit in an overfilled car with a big dog. I was thrown into Tuesday like a hurricane and questioned the sanity of my life. I mean, really, it is ridiculous. And yet...I think I thrive off of it just a little. Even so, I wish I could find something more of a happy medium. As an artist, how to make enough money that you don't have to work yourself inside out? This is the question.
I didn't have any major epiphanies while I was away, but I DID read a really good book. I DID feel a few lingering issues begin to lay themselves to rest. I DID pull a tarot card before embarking on my journey home and was told that peace, joy, and happiness would be mine and that my creative dreams would be successful. I DID drive a full 4 hours with just my thoughts...no radio, no internet, no phone--and it was blissful.
And now I am back in the middle of my life. I'm about to launch my next major project at a big event on Saturday. I'm finishing up commissioned work that has been on a waiting list for a long, long time. I'm preparing letters to sell in 2 boutiques. I'm putting together the material for a 2nd major project that I will be doing simultaneously with the first (this is where insanity steps in). AND I'm preparing for a big art fair in the first week of June, for which I have not even started getting ready for yet.
Yesterday I picked up dog poo, raked the yard, did the dishes, vacuumed, dusted and mopped the house, took a shower, sent emails, unloaded half of my studio out of my car, and walked the dogs...all before breakfast! Of course, these things weren't even on my list of things to do.
But wait a minute...I don't mean to write a post about how busy I am. Boring. I also am not interested in being told that I need to take a break--which, despite the retreat, I'm sure I still need (but it's hard to do with a stack of bills staring you in the face). My real thought is this: what does an artist need to do in order to do better than struggle to get by? If I read another Etsy Success Story about how someone works from the moment they get up until the wee hours of the night, I think I will cry. Well, ok, not really. And, of course, Etsy is only one of the things my creative business entails. But my point is this: there has to be a more sustainable way of living.
I am on a mission to find out how.
Namaste and good day to all of you.