Thursday, June 2, 2016

Illustration Friday-Tribal

Today I had to remind myself of the many accomplishments I've made on my artistic journey though the years. I have a bad habit of beating myself up when I am not following this imaginary internal clock, that seems to forever tick, and point a finger of guilt for "not keeping up." I then start to question my creditability. The voice continues…"You're not really an artist if you're not creating?" Or, "What gives you the right to call yourself an illustrator, when was the last time you illustrated?" It goes on an on hammering at me! I try to defend myself! I say "I've been working a lot of extra hours these past 2 months!" "I have way too many distractions at home!" "Didn't I just finish building that Jukebox in April, that was creative!" But it doesn't seem to appease the voice inside my head, my worst critic! And then there's the one that hits me at my core-- "You're not making money at it so where's your value?" This is how my internal struggle usually goes.  I've been going through this tug-of-war for the last 2 months, a self defeating pattern. So as I said I began to really look at my artistic journey though the years. I have all kinds of evidence of my worth. I go upstairs and I see the bulk of what I've created, I look at my computer files and see pieces that may no longer be here phyically but now resides in someone elses home. I see pieces I'm proud of and some that give me pure joy, work that have brought struggle and frustration, but in the end growth. I see value. I think of all the projects I've done, some paid and some not. All the art shows and exhibits, all the graphic projects I did. Invitations, business cards, promo pieces and so on. Then there was the six years of volunteer work for the Willoughby Historical Society, faithfully putting out a newsletter every 3 months. I think about all the artists and illustrators l've learned about and have come to admire, all the classes I've taken, and this blog that I began 7 years ago to help me stay in touch with my art. And I think of all the people I've connected with through being an artist.

I needed to write this post today, I needed to honor myself as an artist. To honor my value. It's so easy to beat ourselves up, to forget the accomplishments along the way. When we falter our mind really can be our worst enemy.

This piece above was created for a poster many moons ago for a local shop in my hometown. I thought it fitting for the word of the week, tribal.