A life of criticism accepted…I will trudge forward.

Posted: May 4, 2009 in Art and Business, Art and Politics, My Life as an Artist, Uncategorized

OK, so my last entry, “It’s all good” gave you an idea of my career, but kinda left you hangin’. You might have walked away from the computer asking yourself, where is she going with this?

Well, I am writing to reiterate to myself more than anyone, that I am working extremely hard doing exactly what I should be doing and that is why it does not feel like work. I do get tired and worn out and bogged down from time to time, but I never wake up thinking, I don’t want to go to work today.

Why? Because I am doing what I love. I am volunteering in the community as an advocate for the arts. I am a promoter, marketer, designer, problem solver, artist, and entrepreneur. I didn’t exactly plan it this way, but life presented one thing after another and this is how it ended up. I now use all the skills and talents that I have accepted over the years and apply them to almost everything I do.

For instance, I have always had a love and appreciation for the outdoors. My first real job the summer after graduating HS was working for WCC building trails on one of the uninhabited Apostle Islands in Lake Superior. Then my longest career move was with a Parks and Recreation department that focuses on environmental and historical education and open space acquisition. I never outgrew my need to get dirty once in a while. I now garden and volunteer in my community by serving on the Greenways Advisory Board while creating artwork from scrap and recyclable materials.

I always had a soft spot for children and struggling families. Growing up was not always easy and all I ever wanted was a family of my own. When I worked in the city and walked the mile to my office every day, seeing the homeless people sketching on the streets brought a smile to my face. They must have been enjoying themselves and take pride in what they were doing because I saw them nearly every day. Never did they hold out their hand, just a small sign saying “artwork: $20”.

Then there is art, which has been a mainstay passion of mine from a very young age. I was always good in math and had more common sense than I really wanted, but creativity is where I could truly be at peace. I went to school for Math, and quickly switched to Graphic Design. I took several drawing and painting classes and had as much criticism as I did praise as I tried to find my niche. My portfolio was missplaced my Senior year and found in the middle of a road during a rain storm, run over and trampled. The same year, a painting that took half a year to complete, dissappeared from the student studio. No big deal, it was just an 8′ x 4′ triptych of the New Zealand coastline. Ugh. I sure hope it matches that persons sofa.

So, where is the end to this story? There is no end. With every stab in the back, and every “you can’t”, “you won’t”, you shouldn’t…try harder. With every person who won’t accept what you are doing, concentrate on the two people who think you are doing a great job. When someone calls you arrogant, realize that it is your confidence that has just made them step back. Then you take one giant leap forward.

When the elder, wiser locals of the community say they have been here doing what you are doing for a much longer time than you, just smile. Live your life learning from everyone and everything around you while embracing change. Our world is changing rapidly, and fresh, new ideas are just as important as the old ways of doing things. The young, the old, the rich the poor, every color and every corner of the earth is worthy of being recognized for the good they bring to this world.

Let’s all work together for the greater good…

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