I am a creative professional. I am lucky enough that my “job that buys groceries” is a creative job as well but I have quite a few irons in the fire. I am an illustrator and painter. I love doing it; terrible at selling it. That is my husband’s job. He can sell ice to an Eskimo. I am also an aspiring writer in the middle of a Kickstarter campaign to help publish my first novel, The Adventures of the Flying Furniture: The Return of the Great Flyer. The novel has been at the forefront of my creative efforts (my sort-of grown up job aside) and everything else has been sporadic; pushed toward the farthest back burner of my life.
Drawing is quick and somewhat relaxing but I often feel guilty pulling out my fancy pens and gouache to doodle when I should be revamping my social media campaign to promote my novel and Kickstarter. Painting is more taxing but when my project is completed, I feel more satisfied that with almost anything else. I lose time when I am painting. Before I had my son and I was a childless, unmarried young-un, I could spend all day on a painting. I could LIVE paint…at a festival…with people watching and let my now-husband talk about my paintings on display and make sales. Now, I am lucky if I paint twice a year, not including my day job. It is something I have not forced myself to make time for.
My writing has always been my mythical golden goose. It is the way I have seen myself cross over into the enchanted world of getting paid to illustrate things and making films. My paintings sell. I am not a character or a celebrity. Art sales for the normal folk are tough in a world that sees rising interest rates, daycare tuition, endless student loans (stay strong!) and car insurance premiums. I think my non-interest in playing a role and being gimmicky has held me back for sure but it doesn’t change the fact that I love to paint.
Writing and painting both require this zen place for me. Tripping over Lightning McQueen and hearing the theme song for Paw Patrol twenty-five times a day kills the zen a bit. I love my family and I have a good life. However, I would like to find my zen place and my balance between all of my creative endeavors and the necessities of life (great, now I’m singing The Jungle Book).