Emerald Arts: Artworks, origami and custom made creatures by Emma Stronach.
Saturday, October 18, 2008
People do the nicest things sometimes...
I got a book in the mail yesterday. It was a present from my lovely new friend Rhys. We met at the Zine fair, part of the This Is Not Art festival, a couple of weeks ago. Rhys had been checking out my stall, we got to chatting, he said that my work reminded him of one of his favourite artist/authors, Keri Smith. He said to check out her work online and that if I liked it he would send me his copy of the book "Living Out Loud: Activities to Fuel a Creative Life".
So I checked out Keri's website and loved her work, then emailed Rhys back to say that he was totally right and I think her work is awesome... it really is! I'll give you a link to her website at the end so you can see what I am so excited about.
The book arrived in the mail on Friday. It couldn't have come at a better time.
Usually, I am the world's most positive of people. I am young, have lovely friends and am going about becoming an artist as best I know how. Sometimes, however, it's hard to maintain the level of self-belief this task requires. For every person that tells me my work is lovely, I must be doing very well, there are another ten people to look at me like I am completely mad when I tell them that I am an artist and I run a small business selling toys and educational craft activities.
My mother wants me to go back to University to finish my teaching degree, even though I would never be able to teach (long story, but allergies and treatment thereof leave me with next to no immune system). She thinks that I should move out from where I live now with my wonderful boyfriend back home with her. So not going to happen. My mother is a bit mad.
Making a living as an artist is hard work people say, and with two months left to go on my NEIS business grant, I am definitely starting to feel anxious. My (very) small business is starting to find it's feet and I know that my stuff sells, I am just terrible at marketing it.
This book, however, makes me feel like maybe I can do this. Maybe the only thing holding me back from being an artist and small business owner is my own lack of self-belief.
So here is what I am going to do. I'm going to block my ears to any negative advice for the next couple of weeks, and I am going to get out there and make this happen.
This is who I am. I am an artist. I am not an administrative assistant, student, teacher, cashier at Domayne. Of course it's not going to be easy to get over the abject terror that even the word marketing instills in me, but no one is ever going to know about me if I sit in my little house and paint all day.