Tag Archives: artist

Art Making as Self Love

“As artists it takes courage to create when the world around us keeps saying that there are better things we could be doing with our time. There is often little recognition or money in being an artist, and yet I invite you to consider art-making and creativity an exuberant act of self-love. To say, “I am an artist,” is to remember the great love that calls to you moment by moment. To be an artist is to say I will no longer retreat and meet the expectations and conventions around me. I will risk loving myself and living from the brilliant and glimmering truth I find there.” Christine Valters Paintner, PhD, Abbey of the Arts.

This new public art installation blew my mind. Janet Echelman’s sweeping fiber art sculpture above Rose Kennedy Greenway in Boston, USA.

Artist’s Quandry

Image 9Having to dig out my cash box from under a layer of renovation dust in preparation for tomorrow’s MORE THAN JUST a BOOK SALE at Brescia College sort of gave me pause. I don’t like promoting consumerism. But normally the upshot of being an artist is that you want will to show your work to others. And sometimes those people will want to own your work for themselves. (In the olden days they were called patrons.)

Mostly I sequester my art to my little corner of the internet called Wavesong. I create what makes me happy, take photos, post and sometimes it appeals to someone who happens to find it in the huge Googly world.

Quietly I throw things up to see who catches them. A little ring holder was mailed to South Korea, a framed fibre art piece to USA, a basket to Australia, a tote to Boston, a chair pad to Newfoundland a set of fibre art pictures was purchased by a CBS set decorator.

In preparation for the first craft/artisan market I have done in a decade I have been unabashedly flogging Facebook with my wares.

As a sorry Canadian, I apologize for blowing my own horn, for telling the world about myself, for wanting you to see what I do in the recesses of my studio. I can’t help but create.

Over-The-Shoulder-Boulder-Holder

Award Winning, “Over-The-Shoulder-Boulder-Holder”

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wrapped stone

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“The Mending Way”

I do admit that I for the most part like creating useful things. Perhaps it is my Protestant work ethic showing its pretty little face or my mother’s voice saying ‘it’s lovely honey, but what’s it for?”

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Chakra Vessel Set or Montessori Sorting BowlsImage 5

Like any artist I could just keep it until my house overflows or give it all away but I desire to be fairly compensated for my work. The fact is that most of us do consume and like to be surrounded by pretty things, hopefully ones that have some meaning. I know that people will buy things anyways. I would rather that they spend their money supporting local artists rather than multi-national companies who barely pay a living wage.*

I often wonder if the greats, like Monet, Michelangelo, Tom Thomson (not that I am anywhere close to being in that classification!) struggled with creating versus promoting. Did they have to pull out their cash boxes?

*If you want to buy fairly traded goods try online shopping at Ten Thousand Villages.