It’s been six months since I’ve created anything and here’s why.
A few years ago, I made a promise to myself. It was when I first entered the art world walking around gallery shows in New York City. I remember looking at the artist who had solo exhibitions, books, and prints being sold everywhere. It was in that moment I told myself “I’m going to have a solo show.”
I had no idea when or how it would happen. I didn’t have an agent, was rejected by multiple art schools, and at the time I didn’t find my niche yet. But it didn’t matter. I made that deal with the Universe and said “I’m going to have a solo show. A solo exhibition with nothing but my work on the walls.
Fast forward to 2018 and I had two solo shows, created an art book of California, been featured nationally, successfully sold my artwork in person and online, and had the opportunity to speak with the awesome artists like James Franco, Ilana Panich-Linsman, and the amazing team over at Marie Forleo Inc. I remember at the time thinking to myself “Wow I finally made it. I actually did it!”
Then it happened.
After the features and feedback subsided, the shows were complete and the prints were sold, I found myself thinking “Now what?” Then came the follow-up questions which consisted of:
“So when’s your next show? What are you working on now? How are you going to top your last series?”
I didn’t have an answer because I honestly didn’t know what I was going to do next. The thought of trying to top my last body of work crippled me. My mind immediately thought there was no way that I could create something that would top my last show.
That’s when I realized I was creating my art for all the wrong reasons.
I was creating work for external gratitude instead of internal success. I was afraid of failing; of not making great work. I was afraid of trying to make work because my mind already set it to disaster. And so I told myself that if I was going to create work just for outside validation, then I need to stop and fix this internal battle. So I stopped and I ended up on a spiritual enlightened journey.
Instead I started writing wellness articles to keep my mind busy. I put the camera down and focused on getting my mind, body, and spirit on the same page. And it wasn’t until this month that I finally made the decision to come out of my shell and get back to work.
Now I create for me.
If no one likes it, or even sees my work, I can say that I’m okay with that. If my work ends up in lost pages of time, buried in my studio space, or my fans only consist of close loved ones – then I’m happy. Regardless of the fame or notoriety, this is my calling.
I’m an artist.
It’s good to be back and I hope you like all the new stuff I’ll be making. Also if you love podcasts, then you’ll love the one I just created called Deep Magic which is where I talk about mental health, wellness, and creativity for artistic millennials.
I hope to see you there!