Jan 6, 2022
You should feel empowered in your art studio to create limitlessly, so why don’t you? Why does your art practice sometimes feel like a discouraging trudge instead of an exciting leap? If any of this sounds familiar, you’re not alone! On this episode, I’m going to show you how to use the most powerful tool in your studio to transform the relationship you have with your art and yourself.
When you see art as a relationship, you see your habits and expectations in a way that you may not have noticed or thought of before. How we see ourselves as an artist, how we understand our relationship with our art, and our relationship with ourselves as the artist who creates it determines what we do, what we create, and how we show up for ourselves in the studio. You can feel empowered, excited, and open to possibility when it comes to your art. Or you can feel discouraged, frustrated, and closed off. It all depends on how you interpret your experience. How you think about your art, your business, and even yourself determines how you feel about those areas. There is a HUGE difference in the results you get when you show up to your studio feeling empowered and excited versus creating from a place of frustration and discouragement.
The artist’s journey is a long one. Some of us have been working on our art since finger painting in kindergarten. In that sense, art is like our longest and closest friend. We need to treat it as if we are in a relationship with another person. So my question is, how do you show up for this friend? Do you show trust? Do you value the relationship? Are you secure in how you think and feel about the relationship? Are you reliable? Do you have your friend’s back or is the relationship one-sided? When answering these questions, we can all admit that we have been a bad friend to our art in one way or another. We’ve been needy or have had unrealistic expectations of our art that led to increased strain on the relationship. We’ve bad-mouthed our art. Blown it off. Failed to prioritize it. We’ve even expected it to pay all the bills without giving art its own room! If art is one of the most important relationships in our lives then our thoughts and actions should reflect that. We need to make sure we’re investing in our relationship with art as much as we expect to get from our relationship with art.
If you’re reading this and you’re starting to feel like you’re under a microscope, don't. I’ve probably done all of these things more than a few times. None of this is your fault. Art school doesn’t teach you that you need to treat your art like a person and cultivate a healthy relationship with it. On top of that, we’ve been handed a lot of confusing and contradictory ideas about what it means to be an artist. It seems like every artist is running around trying to follow “the rules” when there are no rules. You can make your own! You have the freedom to design a system that makes sense for your life. Art should feel good, and the method you use to create it and distribute it should feel good too. You get to decide what resonates with you and what doesn’t. The only universal rule should be that we have a deep love and respect for the art that we create. For more information about cultivating a healthy relationship with your art, listen to this episode!