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I’ve heard it said countless times, and I’m sure to have uttered these sacred words a few times myself. But still — it’s a hard lesson, right?
“Let go of what no longer serves you…”
My website has been on the fritz for oh, about a year or so now, to the point where it was impossible to even log in to the admin page. Still, it took some courage and deep breathing to click that DELETE button. Today was the day to wipe out the past 2 1/2 years of virtual space here on bethanderson.net
And you know what? It feels really good!
Stay tuned, this is just the next beginning for me. Lots of virtual dust and cobwebs to clear as I open to this new chapter of my life and business.
Thank you for being here, I can’t wait to learn and grow with you!
Have you heard the news? I have a new studio…and it is by-far my most favorite and the warmest room in the house!
They say a picture is worth a thousand words, so I’ll let these ones speak for themselves…
And yes, I admit that you can catch me out here randomly, working… or not!
Do you have a tribe?
Most people do… although you may refer to them as something different. Your crowd, club, posse, troop, circle, crew, pack. You know what I mean…
I… have a tribe.
Like all tribes, mine is here to support and monitor my health and well-being. They are the people who bring out the best in me, and who have seen me at my worst. They also challenge me to go outside of my comfort zone, explore my shadows, and take that leap even when I have no idea where I’ll land.
They are the ones who say to me, “Jump — I’ll catch you. It’ll be worth it!”
My tribe has been doing quite a lot of catching this year. Caught in the depths of swirling doubt, anger, resentment, and confusion, I found myself on the edge of a very scary, deep and dark abyss more than once in the past 9 months or so.
When a brick landed in my chest where my heart used to reside, a member of my 8:20 tribe described in detail how that used to feel for her and assured me that the brick will melt away. Tears streamed down my face as she spoke those words to me. I never guessed that another person would know or understand how that brick feels, let alone have lived through it!
I recognize my good fortune in that my tribe not only consists of a sister, mom, sister-in-law, an 8:20 club, and other key players, but also a mermaid and a medicine woman.
My mermaid is the one who rescues me from the depths of the ocean. She assures me that I need to “stay up here — this is where you belong!”
My medicine woman is the one who has led me straight to the heart of those shadows and taught me to push through the resistance and fear to the other side all the while reminding me to “be kind to yourself”.
It’s the other side that makes all the difference. Want to know what I found there? Three things:
I have (for today) found a sense of peace, calm and contentment that I never dreamed possible. I stopped carrying the weight of the world and it’s (un)happiness on my shoulders. I have discovered that I can support, encourage, and love but cannot create happiness for anyone other than myself.
I’m writing this today to thank and acknowledge my tribe. It is much larger than I am making it appear here and I cherish and love every single one of you.
Now it’s my turn to do some catching…
(this post originally published August 10, 2012)
Labor Day weekend will mark the two-year anniversary of my joining this crazy world of arts festivals. As hard as that is to believe, I have learned so much in that amount of time. The most important lesson so far?
It’s not all about the art!
What does that mean?
Well you see, I got into this business of art accidentally. My degree in Communication Science and Disorders did little to prepare me for the life I am living now. Looking back at my college years now, I realize that I enjoyed exactly TWO of my college courses… Cultural Anthropology and Phonetics (which is like solving puzzles). Sure wish I would’ve seen those red flags flying as I struggled through Hearing Science and cadaver labs! But, as they say, hindsight is 20/20…
Anyhow, it has taken me a while to realize that there is a helluva lot more to selling art than just making art!
One of the most important aspects to exhibiting art is the booth display. Today, I am going to share with you the progression of my booth from my very first show to now. Which, for the record, is STILL a work in progress!
My very first display I pulled together in about 15 minutes in a panic after realizing that I hadn’t even considered this aspect of exhibiting!
Next, my Dad made easels when, once again, I was in a panic…. Thanks Dad!
Then I went with a stand that I built out of pallets. Very sturdy, but took close to three hours to assemble!
Finally, my most recent booth design, with subsequent tweaking. Again, my dad came to the rescue in helping with the design.
So what do I mean saying, “It’s not all about the art”? My point is, it has taken me
two over four years to create an atmosphere within my booth. With an atmosphere, I can communicate my vision non-verbally. The rustic feel of the burlap combined with the reclaimed wood as well as the clean lines and lack of clutter is my first step in appealing to my ideal client.
Ohhhh…here we go with THAT question again.
I’ve been struggling with this concept for some time now (read: years).
What’s the big deal? Is a person required to have a shiny diploma from the ‘Pie-In-The-Sky’ Art School to earn the title? I used to believe that to be true you see, because that’s one of the things I lack (and long for).
I am unable to intelligently discuss the history and evolution of art. I have limited knowledge of artsy jargon. I rarely visit art museums.
So how could I consider myself an ARTIST?
Now let’s move on to some things that I do know:
- I make art.
- I have a passion for what I am doing with my life that I never thought I would find.
- I surprise myself constantly.
- I am breaking some molds and finally enjoying it!
Let me expand on that last one just a bit…
You see, I make ‘art’ by taking old shipping pallets and other junk and turning them into well…art. Part of my struggle with all of this ‘artist’ stuff has been explaining to other people what exactly it is that I do. How many people have heard of an environmental artist? If I had a nickel for every time a person has looked at me as if I had three heads!
How easy it would be to say, “Oh, why yes, I am an artist, I paint…” (…or photograph, design jewelery…I think you get my point).
But somewhere along the line, my perspective has begun to shift. I am more confident in myself and my work. I acknowledge the support system that surrounds me (you know who you are). And I’d like to say,
“Hello World! I’m Beth Anderson, and yes, I am an artist!”
Introduce yourself, I can’t wait to get to know you!