Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Is Mom Nutty? No, Just an Artist

Plugging along in The Artist's Way course.  I've finally moved myself on to Week 11- Recovering a Sense of Autonomy.  It's interesting, to say the least.  The author discusses things that I know I do and don't do.  Cameron talks about calling one's self an artist and how it feels to say the word. 

Let's be frank, full time, stay-at-home parent becomes the title, not artist.  First I was a fine artist, then I became a commercial artist and wife, then a mother and homemaker.  Where did the title of fine artist fit in anywhere?  Over the years since graduating college armed with my BFA, I've painted and sketched, but not full time, 24/7 artist. 

As a mom the home and family really do come first.  Forget about being first or second on the list, try getting in the top ten!  Not happening.  I remember my professor once told me women don't stay artists because of family obligations.  Talk about artist blocks from the get-go!

Kids grow up.  What do they really need from me?  Laundry, food?  Oh yeah, money. Some day maybe babysitting?  Right now that's it, but I've been doing this job for so long it's become my block to art.  I've realized this from working in the course.  I know who I am inside my brain.  I might be a little nutty, in a good way, of course!  Okay, a wacky, artist mom, but responsible when I need to be.  Fine.

Finally I have the freedom to leave the laundry and go to the easel.  It's been my habit to think of all the things I want to do, but can't.  All the things I want to do, but don't.  Doing this course helped me to carve out more time to play at being an artist again.  I even said the word a couple days ago when asked my profession!  I used to say homemaker because that's what I thought I was.  Not any more. 

If what I paint isn't great, so what?  Making bad art is better than not making any art at all.  Bad art could point the way to a different idea or style I might not have tried had I not played.  Again, it all comes down to the "doing", the process not the outcome.  Just having the chance to make bad art is a step in the right direction.

So, yes, I'm an artist, however wacky.  Sorry guys!

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