How to make an investment in yourself.
Summer is ALWAYS the craziest time of the year for me because it seems that Summer is the best time for opportunities to bloom and because of this, I always seem to spread myself way too thin. As a entrepreneur, we tend to do that right? It's that whole fear of missing out plus, when you are hustling to be a full time creative, there isn't always the guarantee of a stable paycheck, it's a rough road to balance.
The month of June 2018 was pure and utter torture for me. So many "bad" things happened but also, some really great things too. I made the decision to leave my second iteration of an office job because I was presented with the opportunity to teach art full time during the summer, I had been flying solo for about a year and let's be real... the struggle was hard. Establishing Fringe as a full time income source was very difficult and very very demanding. When said office job came knocking, I felt like I'd be able to do it all - work a few days a week AND focus on Fringe. Let's end that statement with a big ol' LOL.
I was working a lot more than I planned and also travelling some, nothing crazy but driving A LOT to various site locations to then put in full days of manual labor. Let's just say, the vision of coming home after that to then crank out some inspiring and enriching Fringe work was laughable... I was toast. My mind and body were fatigued and I was NOT creating art, working on Fringe or connecting with my peers and the community. I realized that I needed to jump at this teaching opportunity because teaching art has always ignited inspiration in me and I thought that this would be a great way to get back to my roots.
It's pretty obvious to anyone who knows me in real life that I am not afraid of change or hard work. So of course I jumped head first into teaching again and was also on the hunt for a side job. Teaching was a contract gig and there was an expiration date... so I needed something to grow into for when my teaching contract ended. So there I was, working my teaching gig, my new part time job, working at two museums for their monthly pop up art programs AND still putting in full-time hours for Fringe... wiped out doesn't even start to explain the feelings I was feeling. Layer in some setbacks - my AC in the Fringe Fit called it quits just as I was leaving my office job, so of course I tried to tough it out (hello two long months of Florida heat!) but eventually I caved and dropped $1400 to fix it.
Now, as I look back at the hardest month of my life I realize how important it is to invest in yourself. While we are told to hustle hard and burn the midnight oil, we also definitely live in the age of self-care and while I think that sometimes people say "treat yo' self" a little too often, I do believe that we have to pour a little bit back into ourselves to be able to keep all these plates spinning!
I love how my work can be seen through many eyes and tell a unique story to each person who gazes. That's really my sweet spot I think... that's what feeds me.
I shared this painting on my facebook page recently in a post that said "currently untitled - what do you see" and the response was amazing. I loved each one so much I wanted to share them here:
This piece ended up being called Poseidon's Realm (#2) and is currently available in my shop. It's a mini, only ranking in at 8"x8" - but wow, look at how mighty that tiny thing is! So many people saw so many different, powerful things in that little square.
A few of the crew from Fringe Art Show helped me install a new show at 7venth Sun Brewery in Seminole Heights called Best Foot Forward... it's probably not a coincidence that this show's initials are BFF - all of the Fringys are seriously like family.
I am so excited to celebrate this show on Friday, July 13th.
Join us at 7venth Sun for a beer and some hang out feels. We will be there starting at 7pm.
The show will hang into August, so if you can't make it - pop in when you can and snap a selfie in front of our art show.
7venth Sun Brewery
6809 N Nebraska Ave,
Tampa, FL 33604
7pm - 10pm (opening reception)
On view: Teri Navajo, Mark Williams, JP DiCarlo, Kara Voorhees Reynolds, Hoolie Rowe, Curtis Whitwam, Mria's Mezzanine, Macy Higgins and Mark Stevens.