As part of the class I am taking about "growing a creative business", I have been privileged to be a part of a small Facebook interest group of about 19 ladies across the world. We have been sharing thoughts, ideas, and vulnerabilities about stepping out into the world and sharing our wares. I am sure every artist, in some way, wants to be known and understood and yes, appreciated for her work. What gives me courage (and empathy) is to know that Van Gogh was never known or appreciated in his time. Courage because it gives me a go-ahead to persevere even though I may never get recognition. He did it because he LOVED it. And THAT is the only reason to do art. The other part is just "stuff". Nice stuff, granted, but not the end-all, be-all.
I have the luxury to plod along, learning and loving what I do. If I never sell a painting, I'll be fine. I'm retired, have an income, and have my children are grown and self-sufficient. So... it doesn't take a lot for me to be strong. I call that luxury.
[ Live Life Like you Have Imagined. Thoreau]
Now, as for practicing courage, that is a pendant hanging in the wings of my brain. Courage in my art would mean taking steps to put it out there. I see artists all over the internet of EVERY range of talent, putting it out there and taking risks. That gives me courage. Of course, some are masters, which I am not (yet). But some are everyday artists, like myself, forging a path.
It would take courage for me to:
* enter a juried art show
* enter any art show
* sell my art in public, like at art fairs
* put my work on Etsy
My first act of courage will be to put some work on Etsy. I have an Etsy account, which is currently quite empty. For future reference it is at http://etsy.com/shop/jeanfwagner. My goal is to put some work there by late October of this year.
My Facebook group has agreed to post on a common theme monthly in a "blog circle". Each of us links to another in the group. If you follow the links, you make it full circle back to the person you started with. My person is Kelli Watcherson. You can link to her here. Go ahead... make a circle. It will be fun. And... watch for it. Once a month, the 3rd Thursday of every month.