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,
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