Sunday, April 1, 2012

A to Z, 2012-- A is for...


But before I get too far "into" that, don't forget to sign up for my special giveaway... if you sign up for it, please remember to do so on the ORIGINAL blog post, linked above or found a few posts below. And let me also give a warm welcome to any A to Z challenge participants who may be visiting!

Now, back to the scheduled program. It took me a long time to consider myself an artist, and realize that I truly am one.

Me as a senior in high school, putting together my "senior project"-- a 3-D rendering of the high school musical. In this photo I was working on the curtains, made from fabric left over from my costume. I'm smiling in this photo because a friend was taking the picture, but this was probably my least favorite project, when it was done~
I've been creating since as far back as I can remember. I learned how to knit (the first time, at least) when I was three. I started out making jewelry and doll-pins, and selling them along the beach with a friend, when I was around 11 years old. I took art lessons around that time, and refined my painting and drawing and sculpting techniques. In high school I took several art classes, and learned how to screen print. College taught me to design techniques for 2-D work, and introduced me to the psychology behind designs.

But I never considered myself an artist.

The art of a former student. Coincidentally, this photograph also reflects exactly how I used to view my work~!
See, my problem is that one of my grandmothers is an artist. She paints watercolors-- the kind of watercolors that are hung in galleries and governor's mansions. Whenever people complimented me on a project, I always thanked them, but made sure to tell them that I was no artist.

No more.

Now, when people ask what I do or what I am, I tell them proudly that I'm an artist. I tell them that my most recent work is wearable art-- because whenever I make jewelry, that is what my ultimate goal.

I'm not saying that I think of myself as the world's best artist. I'm not saying there's nothing else for me to learn-- far from it-- and I still have doubts.

I found this through Facebook, courtesy of a friend <3
Even now, I still have moments when I wonder if this is what I'm truly meant to be doing, if this is the kind of thing that I SHOULD be doing, if this is the kind of thing that I'm good at. I question myself every day.

But now, at least I know, thanks to friends and family (and my own soul-searching) that I deserve the title.

To those of you reading my blog, who might be questioning your OWN status as an artist, I highly recommend that you read this article. It expresses my feelings, exactly, about what it means to be one.

Do my perspectives on being an artist resonate with any of you? I know I'm not the only one who struggles with this title... do any of you have experiences to share?

Tune in tomorrow, same bat time, same bat channel, for more alphabetical excitement!

2 friends stopped by to chat:

John said...

Hi Julia...this blog really resonated with me! In my case, you could substitute "artist" with "tarot reader" and you would have known where I was six years ago. I am so glad to hear that you have the confidence in yourself to stand up and declare what is already obvious: That you are your own artist and stand in no one's shadow.

Thanks for the very powerful reminder to all of us to be confident in whatever "art" we practice. And keep creating! :)

J.W. Alden said...

It was a very long time before I was able to call myself a writer. For the longest time, I'd convinced myself it was just a hobby. Even after I realized it was more than that, it was just a slight upgrade to "aspiration." Now, I proudly call myself a writer when asked what I do, and that was a big step in improving my creative output!

It's like you've given yourself permission to let the REAL stuff come out when you admit to yourself that this is what you are. :)

J.W. Alden

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