What do I need to say? Why do I need to say it? What is it that makes my voice important?
I have been waiting for years for the opportunity to explore those questions. This year, I plunged headlong into my art. I painted, I searched, and I returned with renewed gratitude for my husband and supportive family. I found my way with the light of a newfound faith in God.
At the beginning of 2018 I told myself and my family that I would give myself to my art for a year.
I’ve kept a real job - a full-time job - ever since I graduated college. It was with trepidation that I took the steps to work for myself after our family’s move to Anderson. I told myself that if I could make it work, I would proceed. If I could get something off the ground and find a sustainable path forward, I would continue.
If not, I would * deep sigh *..... I would find a "real job."
The first few months of the year I painted flowers. I painted wildly experimental pieces and a few commissions. I bought more than a thousand dollars in art supplies - I tried things that I had wanted to try for years.
I booked a show. I got rejected from a lot of other shows. I watched jealously as other artists in Anderson and on Instagram showed in galleries, craft shows, and art markets. I created 20 pieces - mostly experimental works - in three months.
In the next three months, I created 20 more. I took workshops. I booked more commissions. I rebuilt my websites. I met other artists. What do I have to say? Why is it important? I asked myself those questions over and over again as I worked maniacally and my message found a sharper focus.
In the next three months, I painted less for me. I booked even more commissions. I raised my prices and bought more software. I created a content marketing program. I put that program on pause when I realized I didn’t have time to implement it and complete my commissions.
Now I have more projects than I really meant to take, but there is a plan for each of them. God has brought me to this amazing place and he will be in my fingers as I complete the work. I am meant to be here and I am meant to do this work.
Stepping back to let someone else handle the manufacturing, shipping, and delivery: my plan is to shift a lot of the products to places like Redbubble and Zazzle so my international customers can have a better experience with my art.