Find your People, Creatives
Most of the time, artists hear they have to find their own "style" but today, I'd like to share with you about how you might find your own "people" who will appreciate you with your art. A place where you might begin to feel accepted, significant and appreciated. I have been thrilled to have found groups of people and at times, individuals who encourage me by loving my style enough to have some of it in their home or office or by being moved by a piece and sharing those thoughts with me.
However, we artists can still feel alone in the world at times so instead of a pity party, let's make MORE social connections specifically with our "artistic side". I personally put this to the test and "put myself out there" Feeling a bit vulnerable, I approached a venue where people of similar beliefs, motivations, and philosophies hang out. For me, it was my local church. For you, it might be a favourite café, a library or book store, a community centre, a theatre or ??? Can you envision your work there? If so, perhaps share with them how much it would mean to you and how they might benefit from showing your work. The reasons will vary...and I actually had to think about what and why I create which was valuable in itself.
My Outcome: I am thrilled to say that three of my pieces were enthusiastically embraced to be exhibited in my church. It helps me feel at home and I hope the art creates a more homey atmosphere for the attendees there. I know that not all will "get" me or my messages and some may even dislike my style, but I hope some might understand the motivation behind what I do and perhaps simply feel the ambience my work creates, that it will make the space more conducive to visiting and getting to know one another, and possibly even to reflect creation. These are my hopes...Yours with your work will be different.
Perhaps your challenge will be reading from your novel or poetry, acting a scene in a play you wrote, dancing at a community event, creating a film fundraising ad for a charity that you have a passion for, making street art, singing in a café...Whatever your genre is, artists need appreciators and appreciators need you. And though artists need to eat, we know it's not all about the money. Let's keep making connections. Seeing a place where one's work is appreciated and in a place where one feels his work has a home adds of a sense of being valued and valuing others.
If you manage to arrange to share your work somewhere of meaning to you, I would love to hear back from you!
Left: "Branches through the Snow" 4'x5' Acrylic on canvas, 1982
Centre: "Abiding Vines" 4'x4' Acrylic and paper on panel, 2018
Right: "Upon the Cross" 5'x'4' Acrylic on canvas, 1987