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PERMISSION


"Poor is the man whose pleasures depend on the permission of another." - Madonna


Prompt:

I want to think of what we feel comfortable creating as artists. 

And then, I want to take a look at what we DON’T feel comfortable creating… why is that? 


My Answer:

I feel comfortable creating work that I am ALREADY known for making, or being good at.

Similarly, I feel uncomfortable (or vulnerable) creating work that I feel I don’t have a “mastery” of… say, working on an apparatus that isn’t “home” for me. I feel as though I have earned this.


Thoughts and Actions:

“I’m not an artist.” Is a huge obstacle for a lot of artists.


I personally never needed any convincing to accept the label of “artist” - because FOR SOME REASON I was told from a very very young age that I WAS an artist. And don’t get me wrong, I’m grateful for that, but it’s almost a little weird… I mean, I was like 8 and I was being told I had a career path.


Now, that path has meandered to a variety of places… but through it all I’ve also been teacher much of the time. And I can’t begin to count the number of times I have heard students tell me NO. No, I can’t paint I’m not an artist. No, I can’t do that skill, I don’t do rope. No, I can’t perform, I’m not a performer. …


There are a lot of excuses to not make art. Not feeling like you have permission is a big one.


You should be the only person who gets to decide if you GET to do do something. So why does it often feel like we need some sort of permission to try something new?


Here’s why you already have permission:

You don’t have to be the best or even good at it to do it. There is no certification. Good doesn’t even exist, its subjective. Anything goes.


You don’t have to make money from it. It doesn’t have to be your “job” 


You don’t have to go to school for it. (Or go anywhere special, you can learn anywhere you want) You just have to learn enough technique to execute your vision and then practice.


You don’t need a message or a reason, you can just do it because you feel moved to do it. Because you want to.


You don’t need to follow any rules. Certainly no one else rules. There are no boxes to check off. You can get off the hamster wheel any time you want.




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