Who Is An Artist + Who Is Not

by Leonie Dawson on March 30, 2012


Hola gorgeous goddesses!

Once upon a time, in a cubicle job long long ago, I invented a job for myself.

I would spot interesting people who worked on my floor (there were over 200 on my floor, so plenty to choose from!)

And I’d interview them – about their lives, their passions, what made their heart sing, where they travelled, what they collected and sometimes I would even ask what they actually did for work.

And once upon a day, I asked a young dude my trademark question:

“So, what makes you awesome?”

And this lovely guy grinned shyly, and said:

“I do paintings.”

And in my usual, calm, graceful way, I *shrieked*:

“OMG THAT’S GREAT! I LOOOOOOOVE IT!!! TELL ME MOOOOOORE, YOU ARTIST YOU!”

And at the sound of the “A” word, he backpedalled.

“Oh but I’m not an artist or anything! I haven’t SOLD anything you know. I just do paintings.”

 

The Words I Hear Way Too Often

 

“Oh, but I’m not an artist! I haven’t sold anything!”

“Oh, but I’m not an artist! I can barely draw more than a stick figure!”

Since when was ARTIST ever about being an occupation or a judgement, not what we are in our deepest soul?

We were each born artists.

When we were kids, fingerpainting gloriously, and someone told us “Oh! Look at you, you artist you!” we would just nod. And smile. Because that’s who we were. We just made art because it was fun and it made us happy in our hearts.

When did we decide the only person who could ever call themselves an artist was the one who painted full time as their source of income, sold their artwork and galleries, painted their fine art on an easel with nice brushes and made it look completely realistic?

At some point some of us did.

At some point, some of us were mistaken.


Here’s the big, ginormous secret:

The only person who can ever truly call themselves is an artist needs only one requirement:
They were born.

What An Artist Is Not:

Your art does not need to LOOK GOOD in order to be ART.

It does not need to BE SOLD to be ART.

It does not need to be POPULAR to be ART.

It does not need to be SHOWN IN AN ART GALLERY to be ART.

It does not need to be LOVED BY OTHERS to be ART.

(I wish to have a petition against that sentence to refrain anyone from ever, ever saying it again. “Don’t give up your day job” – ARGH! What would be a good response to this? “Well, don’t give up your day job to have fun, be wild, laugh like a kid again or follow your dreams either then!”)

 

What I Want To Hear You Say

“I made this artwork. It was incredibly freeing and therapeutic for my soul.”

“I made this artwork. I have no idea what it is, but gosh darn I love it.”

“I made art. It was the greatest healing experience of my life.”

“I really needed to make this piece of art.”

“This art – just as it is – I am so proud of it. I am so proud of me for doing it.”

“This artwork came out so EASILY! Such a JOY! Like I was a channel for Great Spirit.”

That’s what I want you to say.

That’s what I want you to FEEL.

I know it is all possible

 

The Truth About Art

It’s never about: Looking Good and Being Successful and Making Money.

That’s not the point or value of art. Ever.

The point of art is it being freeing and therapeutic for the soul.

The value of art is that it serves us, our souls and our dreams in a thousand miracle, rainbow ways.

The point of art was to create it, to let this amazing river of spirit and ideas and texture and colour and imaging flow through you.

The point of art is to feel like a Creative Goddess while you do it.

Create like a Creative Goddess, and your life will never be the same again.

And that will be a very, very good thing.

 

I believe in magic x a gazillion

 

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