Saturday, July 23, 2011
Filling Requests (if you love me, you will read this)
Annalise made a request.
She asked "If I knew I could not fail, what would I do?" She also added that money is a non-issue, here. We are going to pretend that the money for any endeavor would magically appear. I have seen this question before; on inspiration boards, on blogs, used as a motivational catapult. And, like most people, I have thought "Ha. What wouldn't I do?" and then went on about my business. I never really considered what my real answer would be until Annalise asked me. Now, I could have just went with an easy answer, like "I would be a dancer and be in a dance movie!". But I really don't think that is what she was looking for.
This has been a difficult question for me to answer. Maybe because I am not a very motivated person. Maybe because there are too many things that I would like to do. Maybe because I don't actually see any of them happening. Maybe because it's too easy to become complacent about your own situation in life. Maybe because I have quit trying, already.
I make things. That is what I do. That is what I have always done. I make art. I make clothes. I make bags and jewelry. I make whatever it is that my over-active brain spits out at me. But, as you all have probably already figured out, I don't have a life or death desire to do these things. I don't wake up in the morning feeling like if I don't create something my head will surely explode. On the contrary, it takes a whole lot of effort and ass kicking for me to follow through with my ideas. This is the very reason that I do not do custom orders or list items in my shop that are made to order. I am very quick about filling and shipping orders, but if it is not already made and ready to go, it is not going to happen. Therefore, I have piles of unfinished projects waiting around with good intentions of finishing them all up and moving forward, yet I continue to stand still.
I am envious of artists and designers who have such passion and drive. I wish that I was born with that same determination. But I wasn't. Interestingly enough, I was born with an equally artistic and mechanically inclined mind. This is why working on cars has always been fun to me. Just as much fun as finger painting. So one half of my brain desires to make something beautiful that speaks to the soul, and the other half desires a problem to have to figure out. Thus pattern-making was a natural fit. Designing is a perfect marriage of the two. Yet, it still doesn't excite me.
Bored yet? I'm trying to make this all come full circle. Stick with me.
So, the big question is "what does excite me?" Get your minds out of the gutters. We're not taking that road. Well........ finishing a project excites me. Not the process, but the end result. Singing excites me. But that's a whole other story. Putting something onto paper or canvas that was once only visible in my head excites me. That includes both painting and writing. The thought of encouraging young girls to appreciate themselves excites me. Our society just keeps pushing kids in all sorts of wrong directions.
So what is a girl like me to do? What would I do if I knew I could not fail? Knowing who I am and that my motivational level is not going to miraculously quadruple over night. Knowing that I have the talent, but not the drive. Knowing that making it in the art world involves selling yourself (seriously, guys. not like that.).
If I knew I could not fail, I would start painting again. Painting the things that I like to paint. Not worrying about whether I have a recognizable style. Not worrying about whether they could categorize my work. Not worrying about what anyone else wanted to see me paint, but only about what I wanted to see me paint. I would believe in myself and my skill. I would present my work to galleries and it would sell. And, somehow, somewhere in that mix, I would find a way to encourage people. To tell them "Hey. If I can manage to get up and push myself through each day and believe in myself, then you can too."
If I knew I could not fail, I would be the person that I know I was born to be.
Sounds simple enough, doesn't it? But it isn't. Here is the really sad part. Regardless of what I hope will happen, I am probably not going to wake up every morning wanting to paint. I very rarely actually want to paint. And you know what happens when you force yourself to paint? Shit. Shit happens. Nothing goes right. It doesn't flow. Same thing with writing. And designing. When the Divine Inspiration is not knocking at your door, all your effort turns to shit.
But you wanna know something crazy? I think I'll give it a try anyway. Hell. What do I have to lose? (this is where I pretend that canvas and paint doesn't cost a fortune.) Nothing to lose. Everything to gain. May as well follow my own advice and at least try to kick some ass at life.
Thanks, Annalise. :)