How do you eat an elephant? One bite at the time.
Great advice don’t you think? But that doesn’t mean you can ignore the elephant. At the beginning of 2018, I had some dreams, not resolution but things I hoped for. Now, in order to get stuff and dreams going you need to act. Nothing comes by its self, right?
So my dream was to have some exhibitions and opportunities to show my work, and sell some pieces in the process. The hurdle I had to take or my big giant elephant was to promote myself. If there is anything I’m really bad at, it’s self promotion.
I forget posting on social media. I don’t pick up my smartphone and force people to look at dozens of pictures of my artwork. I don’t talk about my work unless people really push me to do so.
So what do I do to get into a show?
To be really honest, I wait. I literally wait until something comes my way. Followed by being extremely doubtful of not being good enough. Being overconfident. Thinking I’m one big fake mess. If I’m over all that, you could say my brain flips a coin and if it’s heads I do it, if it’s tails I don’t.
Let’s be honest, this isn’t the greatest business model, is it?
So how am I going to tackle the elephant in 2019?
Well, as the saying goes, one bite at the time.
Step two: I’m going to open up to people when they ask: “what do you do?” So that means practicing my elevator pitch and having just a few beautiful images of my art work ready to show. Just a few, so people don’t get put off.
Step three: visit one or two galleries each months to get to know “the scene” and try to find a gallery that could work for my art.
Step four: work on a nice pdf file with a short artist statement, project statement, and some of my best work to send to galleries.
Step five: breathe! Don’t let all these previous steps overwhelm me so get into my usual routine of doubts and negative thoughts.
Now to you this may sounds very basic and silly but for me this is a giant elephant. Just a few years ago I didn’t come out of my house and had a depression that lasted 30 years. So if I manage to get through these steps, I have made a mayor breakthrough, and started to really re-program my brain in allowing me to do the stuff I like and not the stuff people said I needed to do.
So why the title “Collect lots of love as you pass by GO”?
In 2018 I’ve had some great opportunities to exhibit my work. And the more I started explain to people what the artwork was about, the more I got comfortable. This meant I was more open and honest of what my feelings were. People were in their turn opening up to me and told me their story. Which proved to be very therapeutical for me as well as them. I felt more love during those exhibitions than I have ever felt in my lifetime. So having more or better exhibitions also means collecting and giving lots of love. And that my friends, to me is so much more important than getting a sale. I know, you have to make sales in order to make new work, in order to do more exhibitions, in order to live. But still the feelings of passing on love to a complete stranger is priceless.
Knowing these words come from a girl who’s has Asperger disorder you can say it is pretty impressive. (Okay, seriously, I just wrote down my first positive comment about myself and it’s not even new year)
Let’s take our knife and fork and start on that elephant.
Will this be easy? Don’t fool yourself, no this will certainly not be easy. If you do something every day, it still takes a month to make something a habit. Re-program your brain takes time. Will I fail? Of course, some days I will fail. But I need to keep my focus and pick up where I left. Will I get rejected and disappointed? Sure, it will suck. It will seem like the whole world is unfair and that’s a feeling I’m very sensitive to. And, at first, I will feel like quitting will be the best thing to do. But wouldn’t that be the easy way out? Isn’t that what I always tend to do? But when the dust clears I will realize that I can’t let my future be dictated by a few negatives.
I take a bow to 2018 and all the opportunities I got. And I will toast on it at midnight. Then get the confetti out and celebrate the new year. Being grateful that I get the chance to do it better, or should I say different. I will now at New Years even 2019 if my efforts payed of. Only then I can say if the re-programming was a success or a minor set back.
Accomplish your dreams and live your best life.
What did stand out for you in the passed year? Do you think I can hold on to making my five steps work? What are your challenges you are going to take on in 2019? Let’s have a small conversation going. You can reach out to me any way you want.
Sabrina M 🙂
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