Monday, November 21, 2011


It's 7:30 am Monday morning. I'm in the studio. I'm not creating. In fact, the idea of creating both terrifies me and agitates me. I have have two failed sales, and a grant rejection. In one week. I'm seriously starting to doubt myself and my work. Starting to feel paranoid, like I am delusional.

I've been in this sort of position before, but usually with not so many negatives piled on on top another. I will likely end up cleaning and organizing in the studio instead of trying to create. Honestly though, I would like to crawl back into bed under my fluffy comforter and sleep all day.

I feel lost. Unguided. Unsure. Where do I go from here? Do I need to change my style all together? Choose a different medium? Give up entirely? I hate feeling negative, but I feel beaten down!

As an artist, you aren't guaranteed paychecks. You aren't always told you're doing well or badly. You don't get reviews every year. There's no definite criteria on "how your'e doing". There's also not necessarily a checklist of things you can do to improve.

This is definitely a day of self pity for me. I don't know what to do anymore. I'm so sick of creating art that no one sees, buys, or cares about. At my sale at Coldwater Creek last week, not as single person stopped at my area to look at my work. Not. One.

As a fiber artist, I generally feel a lack of respect from most "viewers". They see fabric and quilting and automatically seem to discount me entirely. And honestly, I am kinda pissed off about it. I feel like the kid on the playground that everyone picks on.

Today I question my strength to keep going in this chosen medium. I feel so alone and lost in this situation. Can't the universe throw me a bone????


Jules Rushing said...

Stephanie, I soooo know what you are going through and how you feel!!! Take the day and enjoy organizing and cleaning up your studio. Turn on great music or download a book to listen too. I'm going to do the same!
Take this time to pull out those books you have bought online, from instructors, at the bookstore, quilt show, etc. Take time to read through them, find a technique you haven't tried yet, find several, and spend a week just working on new techniques. Look through books for inspiration for new pieces or go to the museum (I'm doing that in a couple of weeks). When you look at other art work, look a different direction than what you usually do and try a different style. It can't hurt, you might find a new niche! We never know what we may be able to do until we push ourselves and try something new.
Most important DON'T GIVE UP!!!!!
Hang your pieces in your home and enjoy them until someone else decides they want to enjoy them.
Some of our best art comes through during our "dry" periods.


Silvia Piza-Tandlich said...

Stephanie, don't ever give up! There's probably nothing wrong with YOU. Remember that when a door closes, another will open: our self-esteem doesn't let us market ourselves better unless we "re-fuel". Charge the battery by getting inspired in other artists' creation, because you'll know you're not alone.

Marijke said...

First of All, I just joined to follow your blog.
Don't you dare to give up now!
I've have no idea, you have to earn à living with your art.
If so, try to find à part time job, so at least that Will be taken care of.
I don't think you should change your style!
Try to expand it, make bigger art, but it's important it is YOU.
I exhibit my work à lot, everybody loves it, but nobody buys!
But I Will never consider quitting! It's my life!
I have à feeling it's yours too!
To make sure people see it, take part in contests, it gives you à theme to work with.
Or try teaching workshops, start with à morning or àn afternoon. It Will give you à boost in self esteem.
You Will find some at or .org, not sure right now.
Are you on Facebook? There is à wonderful community of artists out there!
Hope to see you there!
Marijke van Welzen
THE Netherlands

ave said...

Hello Stephanie, Yes, I also know that feeling you have, I think I was there last Saturday. Most of what you say is true, they don't give a damn, but the question I have been pondering since I read your post, is WHAT ELSE WOULD WE DO?? We are driven to create and we get immense satisfaction from it. I don't think you are lost, I think you would be LOST if you/we gave it up. We would then become like some of our friends, who are really lost and that would be terrible. Just think we would have work at a crap job just to get through the day. I wrote an article and started a series on this very thing on my blog awhile ago. 'My get a life' series.
Actually, doesn't hurt to stay in bed for the day anyway. You would be surprised that it soes more good than harm.

Goog said...

No quitting allowed :)

It's so much EASIER to believe we suck than that we're amazing, isn't it? One bad thing happens (or five, or ten) and we remember it SO much longer than one good thing. Guess what? You don't suck. You ARE amazing. AND - "an artist cannot fail", remember? Be mad. Feel sorry. But don't give up. That's the most important.