dream big. a painting from last year....
BE prepared for a large dose of brain vomit here.....and proceed with caution....
As you may or may not have noticed, I've been scarce around these parts lately. I'd apologize but I have no intention of misleading you by posting crap in an effort to get you to visit just because I blog everyday.
I've been hunkering down and doing a lot of thinking....The world at large has me contemplating so much lately. The devastation that has happened and will continue to happen in Japan, the ongoing clusterf*ck in the Middle East and northern Africa. My basic need to worry about the world's problems and how I can better serve the world.
So I've had a hard time verbalizing what is going on with me and how I feel about it. I feel like a tool posting new things about my shop (not that there have been many) when people have had their entire lives and families ripped away in one foul swoop of mother nature's awesome power. Hey! Tens of thousands just died and there's an impending worldwide nuclear disaster! wanna see what's new in my Etsy shop???
Anyway, I digress....I hope in a good way. I've taken the several weeks off to contemplate all that is my business....whatever that is, because I'm not sure I actually know. I get glimpses sometimes about what it is, or what it could be, and what I do or do not like about all of those things.
I dislike production. and I don't want to feel like a bead making machine. Because that isn't enjoyable. Etsy, as of late, has really started to disenchant me. I love Etsy, from way back in 2005 when I first listed a few paintings and low and behold, after 3 months, I actually sold one. However, to become a successful shop and seller, there is a rote that I have become very uncomfortable with in order to keep selling. I love my customers. Please don't misunderstand me. But the constant production, the constant marketing involved with listing, social networking, blogging. It is exhausting and I know many of you can relate. If I am making handmade things, and the efforts exhaust me to the point where my joy is negating the actual pleasure of making them, what makes me different than any garbage you can buy at a big box store that comes from exhausted workers in third world countries who work ungodly schedules to provide basic sustenance to their families? Because in essence, that is what I'm doing. I'm constantly robbing Peter to pay Paul and deciding if we'll have a decent dinner.
In this vein, I constantly question capitalism and if it's really the answer. I research blogs, I find successful artists who are making it. How have they become successful? Have they enjoyed a lucrative licensing deal where there goods are then mass produced overseas? Many times this is the case.
This point hit home for me today. A few weeks ago, while visiting family, we were perusing gift shops. An artist I truly admire, who has a very successful licensing career, was prominently displayed in this gift shop. I had this moment, where I said to myself, HOW DO I GET TO THIS PLACE? Span forward, to today when I was at the Goodwill, and I saw one of said artist's mass produced items in the fray. Is that what I'm seeking? A piece of the pie? To be rich and find my stuff discarded at the Goodwill? After some reckless consumer has decided it's no longer their taste?
Not always, but a lot. And I'm not comfortable with that. I want to be at home, with my craft. I want to inspire others. I would like to write a book someday. But I want to be true and that is the reason for the break. I'm thinking about all this and where I fit in...to the grand scheme of things. of these things we call art. and how they are all just things. how they could all be wiped away in the blink of an eye and how they figure into this grand thing we call life.
If you read this far, thank you.