Last year was a good year but I never really got to fulfil a new passion I discovered as fully as I wanted too. In fact I got nowhere near! I spent a lot of 2013 making & shipping orders- obviously I'm not complaining about this- it is an amazing thing to earn money from your art but it got in the way of creating- which is what drove me to work for myself in the first place. I think any entrepreneur will go through this sort of thing & you have to re-prioritise & really look at what you want from your business- is it bringing you joy? Are you following your bliss? Have you strayed off the correct path for you? Can you delegate work out yet? Where can you save some valuable time?
I definitely strayed off the path- I had become a manufacturer rather than an artist. I think this will always be a problem for any creative souls- you create work- you put it out there- it sells- so you have to make it & ship it. I then had a few choices, keep going the way I was but accept that my creative time would be minimal, change my products or employ someone to help with the making & shipping. The latter one would be costly as I would need to provide equipment & being a perfectionist I would want to scrutinise everything before it was shipped. Was I making enough money to go down this route? Not sure. Changing the products I sell sounded like a better plan but in order to do this I would need to stop selling most of the time consuming products to allow me time to create new ones. This scared me A LOT. It meant I would loose this income for the foreseeable future, an income I have worked hard for. I think that's why it took me a year to be brave enough to make a decision!
Late 2012, I took a course in Mixed Media & I found my calling. I now believe that this is the one thing that was missing in my work. I've always been searching for a style to call my own or an area of design I could focus on but nothing ever stuck. I realise now that I was looking at it the wrong way. I just needed to put my stamp on what I created, to make it genuinely me & it all came together when I took that course. Of course now I look back at my journey as an artist, it was always staring me in the face. When I studied Interior Design, I always tried to include texture but the thing that brought me the most joy on the entire course was creating some mixed media coasters! I tried to add texture to my gift wraps & cards when I worked full time for the Greetings industry, but time was always an issue & so I had to revert again & again back to flat colour art work. This is true of the toy industry too- cost is an issue- flat colour is cheaper. If I look through my college & university work, my favourite pieces had texture, paint & pattern. Mixed Media was always there- I just didn't realise it had a name! 'Mixed Media'. And although some of my teachers encouraged me forward in that area they never pushed it enough or told me about the art of Mixed Media itself. Why, oh why did no-one say you work well in Mixed Media- you should study Mixed Media.......Ughhhhh! So frustrating! But hey, no worries, I've found it now & I'm so excited to share my new passion with you.
I have decided that I will devote 2014 to Mixed Media. Let's see where this new adventure takes me. I will share techniques I discover, supplies I love. Art I create. Interviews with my favourite artists. Amazing art that I discover and hopefully videos of my processes too.
If you want to come with me on this journey- perhaps you have just discovered Mixed Media also or your passion is painting & illustrating, you can follow me here at my blog by clicking on the category 'My Journey In Mixed Media' (in case you don't want to miss any posts). You can find my categories in the panel on the right of my blog under 'Visit My Friends'.
I have Mixed Media boards for inspiration here on Pinterest.
I'm also on Twitter, Facebook & Flickr, lets be friends :)
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I hope you will join me- it's going to be so much fun!
Love & light Emma x