Online business classes? My art IS my business. Sign me up!
Learn Spanish in one year? Oooh. Being bilingual would be amazing.
...Actually, I've always wanted to learn sign language too, so let's shoot for trilingual!
Choir that meets over lunch? Fun! I could TOTALLY squeeze that in!
Evening cooking class? Funnnnn!
...you get the idea! Y'ALL. My month and a half of 2019 has been FILLED with daily invitations like these. Log into Facebook, and you immediately have access to a variety of exciting events and classes coming your way! But how do you decide which to participate in, and which to pass by? I have been so close to pressing the I'M GOING! button on so many of these events. So what's stopped me? That nagging little voice in my head---I'll call it my inner artist.
The inner dialog goes something like this:
ME: Oh my gosh! Harp lessons?! I have wanted to play the harp for awhile now! Totally signing up!
INNER ARTIST: Whoa there. WEEKLY harp lessons means DAILY practice and commitment. Is there anything you'd rather be using your time for? (New Year's resolutions, anyone?)
I'm stopped in my tracks just about every time my inner artist asks that question. The truth I came to acknowledge a little over 8 years ago was that I AM AN ARTIST. I don't say that sentence lightly, and I can tell you, it took many, many YEARS for me to be able to say it confidently. Sure, most of my life I have made art...and friends and family called me an "artist." So why was it such a big deal for me to call myself an artist? Words are powerful, and the word ARTIST, when used to describe myself, means COMMITMENT. It a LIFE resolution. Every day, I recommit to my art making practice---taking some semblance of a step forward. Now, that doesn't mean that every single free moment of my life is spent making art. But, at least once a day, I make time for my art. On some days, that may look like spending an hour or two working on a painting. Other days that might look like sketching out ideas, taking an inspirational walk, updating my website, or applying for new shows/exhibition opportunities. Still other days it might very well look like taking that business class or that evening cooking class. The defining difference is that my decision to press that "I'M GOING" button is made while keeping in mind my LIFE resolution to continue grow as an artist. I often find inspiration in the most unexpected places, and cooking class might just be one of those places!