Doing what I love means living a creative life, like I’ve always wanted to. Growing up I always pictured myself doing something artistic, but never really knew what. I loved to draw and color. I remember drawing these big-headed girls with long dresses in the cover of every book I could find – including every copy of my Mom’s encyclopaedia (sorry Mom!).
After High School I worked. I felt like there was no reason to go to college as I really didn’t know what I wanted to do. In retrospect this seems silly. I wanted to go to Art School but I didn’t want to move too far from home, My family was important to me and for some reason thought even if I got an Art Degree I would have no real use for it. I did dream of having a job at Disney or working for some kind of cool comic book company, where I would spend most of my days coloring and drawing. I didn’t know whether that kind of job actually existed but that didn’t stop me from daydreaming about it.
Then Life got in the way, and after marriage and two children I found myself searching for what I really wanted to do in my career. It wasn’t until I stumbled on Kelly Rae Roberts’ blog, and read her story, that I became really excited and inspired to do this ‘Art Thang’. Kelly Rae talked about her creative career, her creative business, her book, her licensing deals and how she supporting herself by doing what she loved to do! That was exactly what I wanted to do and that is exactly what I did.
Being a self-taught artist, there was a lot that I had to learn – and I’m still learning. I did research, checked out other artists’ blogs, read their stories, took e-courses, and started painting. I had never painted. I had mainly just drawn and sketched, but since picking up that paintbrush two years ago I haven’t put it down. I love it. I stepped out on faith and started journaling what I’ve learned on my blog. I’m selling my art online and showing it to the public. I’m slowly reaching my goals to do this art full time.
Art has open parts of me that I never knew were there. I really have transformed into the Artist I hoped so hard to be. I have become more creative in my day-to-day life. From the way that I wear my hair to the way that I dress my whole thinking process has changed. I’m finally finding my style and I’m loving the person that I am becoming!
There are still challenges that I have to deal with, mostly within myself. The doubts, the fear, the rejections… I guess that just comes with the territory. I’m constantly researching and trying new ways to get my art seen by the masses. I also spend a lot of time working on it – painting late into the night, learning new techniques trying to make my art more cohesive. Along with being a wife and a mother, working part-time, taking care of other responsibilities and trying to build my creative business there’s not a lot of downtime. Sometimes I have to tell myself “Self, is this really something that you want to do?” The answer is always yes. I know that it takes hard work and determination.
With hindsight I wish that I did this years ago. I wish I could have told myself not to be afraid to dream. To dream big. And to follow that dream.
My big dream now is to Inspire people, including my daughters, to live their dreams. I want my art to be seen by the world. I would love to have a licensing deal with a really cool company. To walk into a boutique or a store and see my artwork for sale. How amazing would it be to see my paintings transformed into home decor line? How proud would I feel to see a window display with my art inside? One day… And I would love to write a book and inspire like minded artists to live their dreams too.
[Images courtesy of Trena Darby]