I have always been a person with big dreams, big vision and lot's of ambition. And with big dreams and big vision and lot's of ambition come many failures, a host of crushing blows and many a broken heart. When you try to climb, you have to be prepared to fall hard. But when you fall hard, you also have to be prepared pick yourself up and move forward even when you just don't feel like it.
The hardest thing about being driven is not to believe in yourself or to keep going when things aren't going well or anything of the sort. I thing it more knowing when to take a step back. Sometimes I find I get so focused on the task at hand that I can't see when it's time to let go. I'm not a quitter. I will drive things into the ground before I give up on a dream.......so, thank goodness I have a realist husband to keep me from losing my shirt!! (not literally, people)
My dream for my gallery has always been large. LARGE. I have a dream for online classes, multiple Sanctuary locations (Sanctuary of Greenville, anyone?), art retreats, mass amounts of art and project based classes, more art crawls, art festivals.......and that's just the tip of the iceberg.
I want it all. And I want it now.
But.......as I push more and more to grow the gallery and spend mass amounts of time dedicating myself to it, I've found the more of myself I've started to lose. I LOVE the gallery. But, what about WHY do I love it?
When I opened the gallery, I was thrilled to have a place to put my own artwork. It was this glorious place where I could experiment with my art and actually have an avenue to try things out......see what received a positive reaction and what didn't.......what was worth pursuing and what wasn't. How awesome is that? I've tried out a million different mediums and had a glorious gallery to place them all. Some exploded and some fell flat. But the process has been priceless and I've learn so very much about my art, my technique, what I enjoy and what I do not.
Lately, everything I have in the gallery is a print. That's not a bad thing. It's nice to have people request my work to the point I have to have prints made. It's exciting and humbling. But, the point is.....I have virtually nothing original! Oh, boy.
In my ambition, my desire to promote the artists in the gallery, and......my pride......I lost sight of why I started this venture and why I loved it so much. Quite frankly, I was getting to point to NOT loving it. It felt like a burden. I was just pushing too hard for things to happen that perhaps it wasn't the right time for.
I texted my friend Bonnie to see what she thought. And, when I told her I wanted to take some time away from constantly promoting the gallery and spend more time on my art she responded with a resounding, 'Yes! That's exactly what you should do!'
Ah........affirmation. That's what I needed.
Sometimes, even though something is a very good thing.....it might not be the best thing for me at the time. And, perhaps it's okay to step back from a good thing for a bit to pursue a better thing. And sometimes that better thing is more quiet, more solitary and more small.
I'm not great artist but creating art fills me up. And these last few months have emptied me out.
I believe in my gallery and what it stands for. I believe in filling it with as many artists and handmade work as I can squeeze in there to introduce to the public. I believe in bringing art to as many people as possible through every avenue possible. And I believe in showing people that how creative they can really be through classes and workshops and online encouragement.......I truly do.
But, I also believe in being small. And for the next few months......I plan to be just that. Tucked away in my little studio, making art. I'll still be working at the gallery and doing what I do......but, in a smaller, more relaxed kind of way that allows me to enjoy the process.
At least for now!
This was my first fun 'get back in the saddle' painting. I've wanted to handpaint lazy susans, of all crazy things. It was so fun. Functional art! Woohoo!
Good night, everyone.