Saturday, October 1, 2011

The Courage to Move On

I must confess something: a lot of the reason I left blogging for a while is because I felt discouraged.  I usually have thick enough skin to bounce back after something disappointing- I always looked forward to the class critiques in Art School and loved hearing the good, the bad, and the constructive.  I'm aware that art is very personal and that my art will only appeal to certain people.  I'm okay with that.  I know that to be a success at anything, you have to have perseverance.  I've always had that in my life- in all situations (becoming a mother at age 20, finishing my bachelor's degree, going through 3 custody battles and coming out of it on friendly terms with my ex).  
But for some reason, after confronting all of my excuses and making goals and a plan that I felt comfortable with... I gave up.  It was the Earth Day festival that ended up taking it all out of me.  I sold one print.  ONE.  I didn't even come close to breaking even with all of the money I spent on the booth fee, the mounting and packaging of prints, the huge favor I asked of my little sis with the driving and the setting up and the take down and the sitting at the booth all day with me (she was so bored out of her mind and just over it by noon).  If selling just one print weren't humiliating and annoying enough, I had to deal with the physical fallout that happens to me after a few days worth of chaos.

So once I regained feeling in my fingers, hands, and legs (about a week or so later), I decided to not do something so foolish again.  After all, where did it get me?  More into debt.  In more physical pain.  Leaning on family too much.  I hated those feelings so why continue trying at something I seemed doomed to fail at?  I put on a happy face when asked about the festival and gaily proclaimed what a great experience it was and how beautiful the weather, all while ignoring and changing the subject of how many prints I sold to anyone who asked.

I'm only professing this here because I think it's bullshit that I gave up.  I know better.  I've had time to think about where I may have gone wrong, and more importantly, where I can do things differently next time.  I also spent a lot of time out of town this summer with my son (and then alternately coming home and recovering by numbing out on pinterest  resting and taking it easy).  I know that my goal is to move back to Indianapolis at least until my son graduates high school.  Now that my mom is in remission, my only obstacle is money.  It's tough to make it work on disability alone.  

So I've got to be innovative.  And that's what I'm working on now...
Stay tuned, 'cause I ain't givin' up.


  1. I can tell you that at our first jewelry show (my sister and I do it together) we didn't sell ANYTHING. We've been at it for five years now and we do pretty well at shows, although we are cutting back next year just because we both have full time jobs and it has become too much.
    But my point is: don't give up. It takes time to build a following, and it all varies so much from show to show, sometimes it's just not the right show for your work.
    I know that feeling, it's not a good one. But believe in yourself and your work and then you just have to find your audience.
    I wish you all the best.

  2. Oh gosh, thank you Kelly:) And even after this blog post, I've been busy at trying to find a groove again. Thank you so much for your kind words and support!