|camp kitchen, abandoned series - mrll 2010|
The pressure on an artist is immense. Even if you somehow succeed in not caring what others think of you and your work, your own inner critic can be incredibly harsh, saying things like, "oh, look at the nice drawing you made. Bet you'll never be able to do that again." Or, "if this work isn't amazing, you'll probably never, ever get another show." So, to soothe that unruly inner beast, I spend a lot of time just thinking about the work I'm creating. Sitting in my studio and examining it, looking for anything I may have missed or overlooked is when I often get my best ideas, insights that can advance a project and fuel me with inspiration.
As I've mentioned before, being a full-time artist consists of an insane amount of administrative work: applying for exhibitions, grants, residencies, etc. can easily take up half of my week. However, now and then it really pays off: I recently was awarded a Creation Grant I had applied for from the PEI Council of the Arts! Basically this is amazing validation for my work, and also financial support to help me spend more time in my studio creating said work. I'm thankful to the Council of course, but also thankful to the Me who slaved over the application last October, revising and rewording well into the wee hours. Good things are happening. Now, I have to get back to my studio!