I don’t know when I’m allowed to call myself an artist.
I remember a moment when I was probably six or seven when a nice woman at church asked me if I wanted to be an artist when I grew up. I remember a moment of confusion, followed by the realization that she just didn’t understand. “I already am an artist,” I said.
I lost the guileless confidence of youth and now I’m not sure I know what it means to be a “real” artist. I have this pervasive idea that in order to be able to claim the title I have to work as an artist (and actually earn money.) But that’s not right. Even some extraordinary artists lived out their lives in obscurity or poverty, their achievements being scorned or ignored in their lifetime.
I’m not looking for work, I’m looking for growth. I’m looking to take the ideas in my head and turn them into something tangible to share. I want what I imagine and what I create to be the same – and I have far to go to get there. I’m getting more used to the idea of thinking of myself as an artist again, but it’s going to take some time.
Have you experienced this?