It wasn’t always this way. I wasn’t always a free spirit professional artist following my heart. In fact I spent decades fighting myself.
I was an executive and legal secretary for many years, working at numerous offices and corporations. Those jobs never lasted very long; I was so efficient I could turn any full time office job into part time work. I would ultimately find myself sitting there with nothing to do wishing I were home creating art. Eventually it would get the better of me and I would quit, breathe a huge sigh of relief and play in my studio until I couldn’t ignore my bills anymore.
Back into the ring I’d go, continuing the vicious circle. Time vs money. Artist vs secretary. Bohemian vs Conservative. My own personal Fight Club.
Eventually I was able to be a professional jewelry artist able to support myself with my art. I did the whole craft show circuit, the wholesale shows, home parties. After those I started to sell online and became a Power Seller on eBay. Those were the days! I could work in my PJs, barefoot, and only had to go to the post office in the afternoons.
It was around that time that I realized that no matter what else I did, what other careers I tried, nothing else would be very successful for me. I was an artist, born an artist, it was in my blood and in my soul, and trying to be something I was not for the sake of financial security was just not going to work. I had to resign myself to being an artist.
Then the bottom fell out of the economy. The mortgage crisis hit hard. People panicked and stopped spending. My income dropped to half literally overnight. Business owners like myself were all in a state of anxiety and shock.
People, like my family, said these are tough times now and I should find work doing something besides art to pay the bills. Because at this stage in my life I have become a somewhat spoiled and eccentric artist, I try every once in a while to fight myself to prove I can still be “normal”. I got a job as a park maintenance worker and, while there were a couple aspects of the job I enjoyed, I was miserable and constantly exhausted.
Last week I quit. And, as has happened amazingly consistently before, as soon as I quit the non-artist job, I’ve gotten jewelry orders every day since. A big cosmic reward for being true to myself. A huge reminder to stop fighting myself and just be who I truly am. A lesson that I must keep relearning: Create art for the joy of being an artist and, in being patient and true to my calling, the money will come. I will be provided for, as long as I continue to concentrate on what I was put on earth to do.