Progress and Fear

Fleur de Lis constructed book 2005-ish

2016 is a little more than just half over, and looking back my decision to work on self improvement this year, instead of obsessing about my artwork, has paid off and in strides.

By self improvement I mean investing not only in my health, but also my art business. I've been busy taking business, art, and other types of classes.  I also spent a good chunk of coin on books (all bought used thanks to Amazon) and art supplies.

I've also have been upgrading my studio equipment I'm now an iPhone/Mac user, and had equipment serviced: my Janome 6500 no longer clunks when using the zig zag stitch, and my studio lamp now turns on every time, and actually stays on.

To be honest June into July has felt a whole lot like christmas!  But I won't lie, while I made this decision back in December of 2015, it was hard at first, I felt guilty. I justified taking classes that meant growth. I had to overcome fear.

The fear of "what if"?

It's doesn't happen all of the time.  But it does happen.  It happened today, about an hour ago actually.

What if the sewing machine doesn't work when I plug it in, and turn it on.  My 60 day service warranty expired yesterday and I hadn't started up the machine since I picked it up from servicing.

Yup, you're not the only one, there's a huge tribe of us out here in the land of the internet that all suffer from fear induced procrastination.

I'm finishing up some handmade book signatures this afternoon, I will film the process, for my Pretty Pigments class that starts September 6th.  I'll be posting about the upcoming class and soon, yes I have tons of fear, and procrastination, about teaching online again.  And I have every intentions of putting that fear to rest.

Be the Light

    Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It's not just in some of us; it's in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others. ~ Marianne Williamson

Hello Monday Thoughts on Licensing Fear and Adobe Illustrator

The past few years in art licensing have been interesting to say the least.  I think it was sometime late 2013 I had decided that I really wanted to learn how to use Adobe Illustrator for repeat pattern design and for everything else one would use it for creating licensable designs.

My long suffering and very loving husband gave me the money for what was at that time to me an expensive class.  Yay me, I'm going to master Illustrator.  Not!!!  By week three I was so damned terrified of the program it'd be almost a year and a half before I'd even open the program on my computer again.

You see it turns out that while the instructor knows gobs about creating repeat patterns, designs, icons from one's original artwork and the like she didn't know jack shit about Illustrator and to be honest should have never have been teaching a course on illustrator!

Roll in Bonnie Christine and Elizabeth Olwen via Skillshare.  While not promising me that I would master Illustrator, like the last instructor had, they did tell me that I would at least know how to turn the program on and with lots of practice I too could create a vector, and most importantly create images that could be translated into a repeat pattern.  And they delivered on what they had promised.

Curious I decided to sign up for Brad Woodard's Adobe Illustrator classes.  Brad where have you been the past three years!!! I learned more about Illustrator from him in one week than I had in three years elsewhere, most importantly which tools inside of Illustrator that would make my work flow efficient, no more doing things the hard way!

So curiosity got the better of me and I went back to the original class, started at the beginning thinking that well now that I understand the terminology and some of the tools now maybe, just maybe...

Oh hell I didn't even last five minutes before I was screaming at my computer monitor telling the instructor that she was doing it wrong, all wrong, she was using the wrong tools, making things way harder than they had to be... and then it dawned on me.  She sucked!  I had been living in fear of a computer program for well over a  year because this woman had NO business teaching a class on illustrator! This is some instructors super power by the way, they teach fear, they don't teach skill, confidence, etc, no they teach fear.  Walk away, NO RUN AWAY from these people they are toxic!

Sooooo, are you still there?  This fall I was invited to participate in an interview about art licensing and my studio habits/life.  I was excited, ecstatic, it's a REALLY good thing Annie told me she wanted my interview information on November 25th instead of the actual deadline of November 29th because I probably would have found a reason to say No!

Why you ask?  Even though I've been licensing my stencil designs with StencilGirl Products I have yet to get up the courage to send my portfolio out to agents for representation. Because I'm afraid.  What am I afraid of you might ask?  To be honest nothing in particular, other than being accepted... Yes I'm nuts, I think I may have stated this before.

But looking at the sheets I put together for Annie's interview I see now that being afraid of being rejected is just as lame as being afraid of being accepted.  I'd like to spend more time pondering this topic but I have some drawing to do and will then digitize those images in Illustrator for creating licensable art.  

Blackbirds in Trees Stencil from StencilGirl Products

So this is where I've been the past three years, hiding in my studio creating work like a mad woman and too afraid to submit it because "what if they want more and I can't deliver"???