Transparency and adaptation / by Anna Rae

It's common knowledge that running any small business is hard.  Selling your craft and art is hard.  Put the two together and you've got your creative life process out there on a commercial market up for sale and ultimately up for judgement.  Your self worth and financial stability is entirely dependent on how much you, the customer, is willing to pay (if at all) for your often very personal creative endeavors.  Those who have chosen to take this path (raise your hand high!) are well aware that capitalism and art are hard to merge.  The great artists before us worked so hard to remove the institution of art from the market and here a lot of us are compromising our original goals to succumb to what people want to wear or more pleasant subject content for their homes.  Don't get me wrong, I love wearing the Catshirt.  It isn't that much of a compromise to me but I also don't want Joel Peter Witkin corpse photos in my kitchen.  Actually, I am definitely the kind of person who could support that bold interior decorating move.  Regardless, I still do find his and other art that could be deemed "ugly" or pushing visual boundaries of comfort worthy of support if only for the conversation that it will inevitably provide... positive, negative or indifferent.  In this endeavor, where I am putting all of these variables in play, it's a real vulnerability and a risk to ego and financial stability.  There is also a very sincere realization that there are these risks and mysteries that will probably go unresolved.  For example, and this is just me being entirely transparent,  I will never know if cats as a graphic will peak and decline... common sense and observation says that they will, but they have stayed so strong for so long (viva la catz!).   I will never know ahead of time how the balance of life and art making will pan out.  What if I can't self edit the boundary pushing in my marketable material?  I was thinking about this whole unknown risk last night and I am such a nerd (as if my cat example wasn't proof enough) that it reminded me of the unresolved subjects in the television show LOST.  There were many!  I know!  But it actually aligned with a time in my life where  I began to  adapt and  hesitate lingering on unresolved issues, conflicts, unknowns, etc.  Risk is thrilling, it really is, and there are bound to be a lot of failures with unresolved mysteries, inevitably. And with that, I leave you with a drawing of the most frustrating one of all from LOST.  The smoke monster.  (And if any of the writers from the show happen to stumble upon this blog, I want you to know that I will still take any plausible resolution to the Smoke Monster. You guys left us like children in a kitchen who watched bakers for hundreds of hours and then locked us out of the kitchen when you may or may not have taken the cake out of the oven.)  

smokemonster copy.jpg