“Progress always involves risks. You can’t steal second base and keep your foot on first base.”- Frederick B. Wilcox
Yesterday, I took my foot off first base; now I'm in the danger zone between first and second, not knowing what will come next.
It all started with fear.
A couple of days ago I made a silly decision to go see "A Dark Knight Rises" as a minuscule act of resistance against fear. What I received for this act was 2 hours and 44 minutes of non-stop violence and a disturbing view of an apocalyptic world. I can't recommend this movie … take that precious 2 hours and 44 minutes and make life with it.
However, this thinking about fear prompted my current leap into the void. Last December I was thrilled to be accepted into the Gallery at Marina Square in Morro Bay. It is a beautiful space filled with the art work of almost 70 artists run by an inspired and very patient leader, Jane Siragusa. It has been a great experience … I've learned a lot, met inspiring artists and was stretched to a new level when I was given the privilege of being a featured artist and had to fill 22' of wall space with my art.
Acceptance into the Gallery was a major factor in my decision to move to the Central Coast … a decision I'm grateful for every day. However, yesterday I resigned as an artist in the Gallery … turned loose of my safe, accepting, friendly and supportive place and decided to steal second. The Gallery sits in the primary tourist area in Morro Bay so it gets a lot of traffic but most of its sales are jewelry and small pieces of art, often related to Morro Bay and its signature rock.
In the past several weeks, I've spent a lot of time trying to find a strategy for making my art fit this market so that it would be financially more viable. The problem is that I want to do bigger pieces, not smaller, and I want to do the work that calls me rather than what I think might sell.
I believe in art. I think the act of creativity heals our Universe … any act of creativity whether it's art, poetry, gardening, raising a child, teaching or dancing. Creativity is not about the end result, it's about the process of pulling a piece of ourselves into the "real" world. Focusing on the end result affects the creative process.
The Gallery fits some artists perfectly … what they are called to create happens to be what the visitors to the gallery want to buy. For me, it was a mis-match. The safe route would have been to adapt to the market. I'm choosing a more risky path leading to somewhere I can't see.
Only tomorrow knows where we're headed.
About this image: Into the Abyss
Harmony is a small art community here on the Central Coast, population 18, with a glass blowing and other art studios. One day i was visiting there and, as I was walking toward the glass studio, something in the weed-filled area in back of it caught my eye. It was just a wooden wall, burnt and weathered but it called to me and from it came this image.