So, I have been doing a lot of beading / jewellery making these days, and loving the heck out of it. I have decided I may indeed, in a couple of months, make a go of selling a few things. However, this post isn’t about the advances in my beading, it’s more about, what beading has taught me, and, as I grow with this craft, I have realized a few things that have also help me grow in my spirit.
I had a huge realization after a particular piece was created, and it was getting good feedback, that, I love, love, and love some more the creating of something just for the sake of creating it, and doing it just for me. Truth is it would not have mattered if it had a great return on feedback, I loved the way it turned out and would show it off regardless. It was at that moment I understood… “ahah! I’m an ARTIST, NOT a DESIGNER!” I have struggled for years in the graphic design world, well, the production of footage clips, flash clips and images world – making pieces I love only to have to change them to meet a managers’ or corporate agenda. Then there’s freelancing – and what a major pain in the ass that is. Countless projects never make it to my portfolio because by the time a person has cut and slashed the original version of something decent I’ve given them – it becomes a piece of trash. Something I would show to no one. It’s entirely de-moralizing for me and extremely frustrating. I wish to create them a beautiful unique website, and they want puppies and kittens. I gave up doing most of my design work, because I found it so stressful and upsetting and I thought, maybe, I simply wasn’t that creative. But, that isn’t true. I’m just not pre-disposed to being creative to please others, and in that vein, I really am an artist – I do what I like, and in beading, if someone buys the final piece, they buy it as is, liking it, AS IS, and there ARE no changes to be made. If someone doesn’t buy it, so be it, at least I enjoyed the process of just making it and birthing that into the world. That may not seem that huge to others, but for me it was, and I no longer doubt my creative abilities – I have plenty of creativity, just not on the agenda of a company, or an “art director”.
The second lesson for me was around patience. Others, and myself, often view me as a rather impatient soul. I have framed myself in this vein for so many years – but, it’s not entirely true. As I start over a project multiple times, failing and doing false starts, or, learning a difficult stitch and having to redo it, or unthreading half my work just to make it more perfect – I realized, I actually have a great deal of patience when dealing with what I love to do, and I have a great deal of patience for dealing with people I love to be with. What I don’t have patience for is when I perceive others as being inconsiderate, lateness (a form of inconsideration), or waiting for something I’m excited about to show up. I have bundles of excitement and get ancy for things to happen. So, I need to re-frame my own self limiting labels, and correct others when they choose to label me. In fact, I’m quite sick of the labels by others – quite frankly, they can shove it (ahem, a side note, sorry).
The third realization was around my writing. I have struggled so much with “writing something I know I am supposed to write” that I just get paralyzed. There’s been so much expectation over the years for me to write my story, or write any story, that I now feel I have to write to meet that expectation – and like designing, I don’t want to do it. So I’m de-pressuring the writing bit off myself – if, like my beading, it comes to the front and wants to happen for the sake of happening for ME, and no one else, then I shall do it – but until then, I’m quite content to create beautiful jewellery.
For me, this process has been a bit of a healing adventure – and I give thanks to whatever creative inclination or intuitive whatever that popped into my head and drove me to do it, which, it quite literally did. “YOU MUST BEAD!” and so I thought on it and I thought, “YES!”, so I did, and I’ve been enjoying the snot out of it ever since.
I think my friends think this is an odd left turn and a distraction from my writing, well, “Friends” in the lightest sense of the term. The people who have supported me, see how happy I am, and in the end, that is what makes a real friend. That too, has also been a huge realization through this strange, off my usual grid, process – the culling of friends, and the joy I have in the few, very supportive people in my life – and they are few, but they are awesome.
Now – enough of this blogging, I have something to bead!!