Sometimes, as an artist, I feel like a hack. I wonder if other people feel this way. It has been a lot of time and money spent on this not very lucrative activity and being a practical person it is hard to justify. The ends pre-exist in the means, I suppose, where you do it for the pleasure of it, or you do something enough and there will be reward of some kind. Thursday was a really difficult day of work, and the last thing I wanted to do was go to class, I even stopped to get a cup of coffee, which I just won’t drink anymore after lunch. But I noticed that the overwhelming stress of the day was eased just by sitting and sketching for an hour. I could feel the feeling of my blood pressure when it is normal, as opposed to its workday pounding. And listening to two fourth grade boys having screaming whining tantrums all day just about put me over the edge.
But I want to make money doing it. I have two commissions in the queue, the third and fourth in a year. And I have sold several paintings this year, when in the past my only patrons were Andrea (seriously could any one ask for a better friend?) and my sister in law (who won’t pay more than 25 dollars a painting despite her diamond tennis bracelets and Mercedes). And I have made money with knitted purses and some other projects over the years.
There is this struggle too between creating work that a gallery might want. Is the quality of your surface acceptable? Is the work good enough? Do you know people? (I don’t) Have you hoofed it enough in NYC (ugh) Is your frame a stylish black frame or is it a schmaltzy wood frame, who is your audience anyway?
I boldly ask the professor of my class if I am wasting my time. He never really answers me, which I guess is an answer isn’t it?