Wednesday, April 29, 2009

nothing but random wednesday morning thoughts...

Get up early. Make a cup of coffee. Shoo Visoca, my ever-loving cat, off of my keyboard about a 100 times. Watch the sun disappear under a layer of clouds. Catch up on emails. Be happy for newly forming friendships.

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 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.


Maria-Thérèse said...

I'm looking for that too.
Although "only" working all day as an Etsy seller and making a good living from it would suit me right now - but I'm starting to feel an urge to write again and I really don't know how to combine long hours of focused writing with all my other work and the administrative bit...

Rowena said...

Hey! I'm interested in finding this out, too. I feel like I work all day, but there is little to show for it in my etsy shop. I don't know what else to do. Keep trying? For how long? My blog is picking up, but not etsy.

I think something important for me is to diversify.

It will probably still mean that I work all day, but maybe spreading the net wide will catch some fish.

CailinMarie said...

it seems to be the timeless struggle of the artist no? complicated by a time in which even those who appreciate and value art find themselves weighing costs of everything; be encouraged; you ARE receiving commissions at least, and so you ARE being noticed, and you ARE building a following and that is something. stay open, say 'yes' and focus on the good.

martie said...

I think perhaps all creative people who are really true to themselves struggle with your issue. I am not sure that there is an answer, but if so I am sure you will discover it. But take joy, pride and comfort in the fact that your creativity CAN sustain you!

Danielle Combs said...

Here's a quote for you:

"I try to take one day at a time, but sometimes several days attack at once."

Amber said...

I always wish and hope the very best for you, no matter what it is you need. And I do now.



maddie said...

so tital yes?

our needs with time?

the eternal balance

when creativity surges in like the
tides ~ it must also recede i think
while we ponder up and rest

awaiting a new surge....

good time to drink coffee
stare at the stars

and eat chocolate:)

Annie said...

Lately I have found that striving is no longer working for me as an artist. I am replacing it with trust. Doing work that feels good, until I need a break and taking many breaks, and walks and naps. I am trusting that if I take care of myself, spirit will honor that and take care of the rest.