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What happens when you give yourself permission?

What happens when you give yourself permission?

A summer thunderstorm just blew in, and out, leaving my grey deck shiny-slick with rain. 

The air smells fresh with the charged ions that only a wild rain can summon.  

And I feel as if those invisible particles are beckoning me to take any small action of my choosing.  

Which is exactly what I did,  a few moments ago.  

I roused myself from an intense focus on this desktop screen and decided to sink into my old rose-pink, rocking armchair and think of nothing. 

In short, I gave myself permission to simply be

I let go of all thoughts about art careers. The business of art. Artist statements. How to get and keep collectors. My smARTist Telesummits, which I’m busy turning into podcasts so more artists can have access. 

I turned away any, and all, work thoughts and let myself slide into the rain. 

Delicious. Giving into flow—the unspooling of infinity.  

Giving myself permission to be intentionally surrounded by all of life.  

Because, even though this is the core truth of every day (being surrounded by all of life), it’s a rare moment when I actually experience this reality. 

I had no agenda. No idea or thoughts about what next

Then, once the rain had washed the dust of summer off the air, and my being had washed the dust of work off my allegorical shoulders, I returned to this screen. 

And immediately wrote to you. 

And wondered…when was the last time you gave yourself permission to go off your script-of-life

To dabble in nothingness? 

I’ve love to know… 

As always, revealing the true spirit of your work…is the work, because artists change the world. 

Ariane Goodwin Writing The Artist Statement. Writing and Editing relief for the Creative Entrepreneur.

Truth. Power. Art.

P.S. Please, scroll down and tell me if you’ve recently dabbled in nothingness and what that was like for you.  

Because nothing makes me happier than having a conversation with you! 

What happens when you give yourself permission?

You are so much more than your art!

more than your art

What on earth do I mean by “you are so much more than your art”?  

There’s a family story that my mother, a watercolor artist hanging with her Big Sur, bohemian crowd (think Man Ray, and the insolent Henry Miller), declared to the gaggle of male artists in her circle, after my birth, that no art could compare to the creation of a child. 

Besides the emotional burden of having to carry her creative outlet, which I’ve long ago released, I re-tell this story here to say: this is not what I mean. 

For my mother, being an artist (which she was in so many respects it’s dizzying) was a zero-sum game, which she stacked up against being a parent.  

And her art lost. (In many ways, her parenting also lost…but that’s another story…) 

Your art and you: the optimal relationship 

 When you immerse yourself in making art, nothing is more fulfilling.  

If you experience “flow” (an expanded state of being where your proprioceptive sense of “I” disappears and the art making becomes everything), that’s likely to increase the internal experience that you are your art. 

And if, on top of that, people tell you how beautiful, amazing, and awesome (three shop-worn adjectives I’d like to toss in the trash) your work is, then being equated with your art becomes too yummy to pull away from. 

And yet, that is exactly what I’m going to ask you to consider doing. 

Extract yourself from your art.  

Just for a moment, right now.  

Take a breath, and write an answer to my following two questions. 

(On what? A Digital note? Some paper beside you? You decide, only, please hang in with me here and do it right now before distraction—or duties—step in!)  

Why write?  

Because writing engages your brain, and your subconscious, in ways that can reveal new information to you, about you. 

And, as odd as it may seem, you and I are heading straight into your art career.  


1. Who are you without your art? 

2. If you couldn’t do the specific art you do, what might take its place? 


You can scroll down and give me your answers below here on this page. 

Or hang onto your answers for a few days because… 

I’ll be back on Friday to consider what an optimal relationship with your art might look like. Or feel like. Or dance like… 

Remember, revealing the true spirit of your work…is the work,  

Ariane Goodwin Writing The Artist Statement. Writing and Editing relief for the Creative Entrepreneur.

Your Truth. Your Power. Your Word. Claim it! 

P.S. When you respond to my two questions here, I’ll take that as permission to share your response with the other artists in my circle—unless you directly ask me not to.  

What happens when you give yourself permission?

What’s Your Why?

This week has been challenging for my why, so I got to thinking about your why.

Why do we do what we do?

Why do you?

Why do I?

I sat at my kitchen table playing solitaire (clears my mind!) and thought about how I used to think our why was baked into our personality, like brown eyes. Once you understood your why (itself a daunting task), it wouldn’t change.

Now I’m questioning that premise because I’m questioning my why, which has stood the test of several decades.

Why, oh, why am I questioning my why?

Because, as I’m questioning everything I do professionally, my why I’ve done what I’ve done, and what I’ll do next, is sliding under an intense, internal microscope.

Maybe this happens to you if you shift from one medium to another. Or from one project to another. Perhaps why you are an artist at all has nuances when it comes to why you select one project over another, one tool over another, one idea over another.

Maybe our whys shift during times of major life transitions; maybe some parts of our why stay the same, while other parts try on new outfits.

For me, right now, that I find artists to be essential, humanity shape-shifters, has not changed. Because you live the creative life for yourself, it affirms for others the substance of creative expression. And so, who knows, maybe they too can have access to their Creative Self.

I find this outcome of being an artist irresistible. And every cell in my body wants to help you learn to articulate your why so the people who love your work grow even more connected to it.

This brings me back to my why.

Which I can’t articulate just yet because I haven’t figured out what’s happening next in my online, artist-focused life.

I think I’ll start with asking myself why I’m needing to change at all?

Maybe that’ll open the gates.

I’ll let you know once I do.

Meanwhile, don’t hold back. Come tell me why you do what you do.

As always, revealing the true spirit of your work…is the work,
especially in challenging times,

Ariane Goodwin Writing The Artist Statement. Writing and Editing relief for the Creative Entrepreneur.




Your Truth. Your Power. Your Word. Claim it!

P.S. If you want the best crash course in writing (or updating!) your artist statement, I wrote Writing the Artist Statement: Revealing the True Spirit of Your Work  specifically for anyone who finds writing about themselves a chore. Revealing the true spirit of your work helps you deeply honor what you do, and in that sense is a joy.

Your book was a lifesaver! The writing exercises took away my fear and made a difference not just in my writing, but also in my work. I would have been lost and frustrated without it. 

~ Lauren Simon ceramic artist

What happens when you give yourself permission?

It’s Not Business as Usual

Today, while pinning up my hair after a warm shower, I was struck by the luxuriousness of this quiet, simple activity while Ukrainian women, children, and men sleep in the subways, in freezing cold underground garages, or in the cement bunkers ironically built by Russia in the 1980s—waiting for the next explosion, the next air raid, their next sip of water.

Once again, the near normalcy of my American life, even under covid, creates a striking contrast to people living day to day with the ravages of war, or hunger, or under repressive regimes. And, like many, I struggle with this.

It’s not a debilitating struggle. It’s not even oppressive. Which makes the struggle itself seem petty in comparison to those looking for food, not hairpins.

What keeps me sane is believing that, as Teilhard de Chardin said, “We are not human beings having a spiritual experience; we are spiritual beings having a human experience.”

And that our experiences, even the ones appearing most devastating, are all woven into an infinite tapestry of a Divine consciousness continuously unfolding beyond what our human brains are wired to comprehend.

And here is where you, my valiant cohort of artists, comes in. I can’t imagine how I’d hold onto even my sanity of spirit if I didn’t also understand how you, as an artist, change the world.

How the very fabric of what you do gives the rest of us a chance to see, feel, and experience something beyond our ordinary sight.

How you carry the Flag of Creativity in a visible, tangible form inspiring all of humankind to wake up to the truth of its essential, creative spirit.

May you thrive, and be safe, in this extraordinary adventure called “your life, your art.”

And may all of us recognize and honor the remarkable, perilous sacrifice for democracy that Ukrainians are giving the world just when it needs it most.

Ariane Goodwin Writing The Artist Statement. Writing and Editing relief for the Creative Entrepreneur.

What happens when you give yourself permission?

What About That Small Grain of Sand in Your Artist’s Shoe?

I know, your artist-career palette is brimming over.

There are sales to consider. How to be, and stay, connected to collectors. Where to show your work. The website updates that haven’t been dealt with. The studio that needs an overhaul.

And goodness only knows, that’s just the career side of your life.

So here I come and yammer on about that small grain of sand in your artist’s shoe: artist statements.

I can only imagine that taking five minutes out of your day feels like five years.

But let me tell how much I’ve learned from those of you who took 5 minutes and completed my easy-peasy survey.

I’ve learned that some of you want to:

  • Know more about what collectors need from you
  • Feel more confident writing about your work
  • Understand why you do what you do! (Seems as if you have the what you do, and how you do it, under wraps.)
  • Identify the true spirit of your work

The irony here is that one of the mainstays of any artist’s careers are the collectors. And when you know what to write for them to become, and stay, engaged with you, that grain of sand in your shoe becomes a sun-warmed beach with aqua waters.

What do you want at this point in your art career? Now’s the time.

Come tell me what will help you get where you want to go!

Remember, revealing the true spirit of your work…is the work,

Ariane Goodwin Writing The Artist Statement. Writing and Editing relief for the Creative Entrepreneur.




Your Truth. Your Power. Your Word. Claim it!

P.S. I even give you a space in the survey to tell me anything you’d like me to know about you, your art, and your art career.

P.S.S. You have no idea about all the areas of an art career I can weave into an artist statement workshop. All I need to know is what do you need. So, come tell me!