Ok, from time to time I’ve had to call bullshit on my own blogs…and this is the case now. I wanted to write something about today…but what I wrote was crap. Absolute, and complete shite.
So this is what I wanted to say….
When I was a kid I was constantly afraid people could hear my thoughts. I had this strong fear…like I knew for sure they were out there and one day I would walk past one of them and they would know something about me that I didn’t want them to.
I used to walk down the street with judgement. Not so much about how someone was dressed or looked but more so how they made me feel. If I was uncomfortable or attracted or afraid…I was terrified that at the exact moment that our paths actually crossed, when we were literally inches from each other’s shoulders they would hear what I was thinking and turn on me.
It never happened…not so far anyway…and to be quite honest, that fear still lingers.
That is what I am anxious about today.
All these people will be in close proximity to me for the next 24 hours. What I would imagine to be perfect thought hearing distance. What if they can hear me? What if they see me?
It’s the first time I’ve had my words on their feet and I’m so excited. Within the confines of my backyard…I think the little piece is quite brilliant to be completely honest. But beyond that…well all these people will be seeing something that is mine…that is a part of me…and if they are able to hear my thoughts…my dreams of being a playwright will be shattered over the next day. It’s terrifying.
I’m filled with a whirlwind of anxiety and excitement and wordless, stomach aching, shit provoking, wrist slitting, pill popping craziness.
Must keep my thoughts quiet and my smile stretched and my insides inside.
Lists upon lists of things to prepare…echoes of screaming babies I must wipe from my mind…I’ve created art with these people but am pushing it to the next level by bringing my children…
The gray clouds are teasing, the campfire is calling, performance art is looming…
With my heart beating in my throat and my head buzzing, there is three hours until we take off on my last adventure of the year…
The Sapling; a twelve minute play I wrote about missed opportunities, lost love, difficult choices…and heartbreak…is being performed this weekend at the first Dark Crop Performance Festival in Belmont.
I didn’t have any expectations when I started writing this piece. It started as a conversation…and now it is so much more and so very different. It just kind of fell into place when I had a deadline and an opportunity to write something for this festival. And I am so very proud of it. I am proud to finally have my words up on their feet for the first time ever…being performed by two actors who I would love to work with again….soon.
And this festival sounds crazy and exciting all at once. The first performance at 6pm after a dinner, and performances continue one after the other until 6:20 the next morning. I’m not sure how long I will be able to last…but I’m going to give it a good go. I don’t get the opportunity all that often to see a show so….gonna try to get them in all in one night….
But I’m anxious.
I’m worried about next week.
This is the third ‘project’ I have completed this year. Three different, but pretty major projects. And this is the last for this year…my focus will redirect back to the day-to-day activities.
So I am worried about the ‘let down’. The exhale after a project. The emptiness of no goal in sight…
Guess it’s time to start writing grants….
With my 42nd birthday looming…I’m considering what birthdays mean to me…
Indulgence. Over indulgence. Birthdays give the excuse to indulge yourself more than almost any other time of the year. Sushi and ice-cream are my choice of poison.
Reflection. On the day the calendar is allowed to add another number to your identity…reflection is inevitable. How did I do? How do I feel? Do I look older? Did I do everything I could?…
My dear friend is right…it is like a death…it’s a death of this last year. I consider it like I would consider losing someone close to myself…Did I say and do everything I could? Did I love it as much as I could? Was I present? etc. And then the year is gone and I can’t get it back…can’t ever see it again…the memories are there but I’m forced to look forward, to move on. It’s like saying goodbye to part of you and also taking a step closer to the ultimate ‘goodbye’.
And then just as there is a death…there is also a birth. A birth of a new year, of new beginnings, new choices, new opportunities. A chance to renew. A chance to change your path or to enhance it or brighten it.
Currently, I believe I measure my worthiness through my accomplishments. Doesn’t sound right when I read it back to myself…but with all honesty that’s where I’m sitting right now. And I have accomplished a lot in my 41st year. I am proud of what I have done, the messages I have attempted to send out into the world, and the people I believe I have touched/affected. It was a good year. A good year to add to the top of my block tower of experiences and memories as I step into another year of possibilities.
My hope for my 42nd year is to make my accomplishments less about me and more about others…helping others to share their stories…to be visible…to feel worthy. I want to measure my worthiness by how worthy I can help others to feel….Yeah…that sounds much better as I read it back.
DARE TO. Share your story. Take a risk. Be really heard and seen.
In the past I have questioned the idea of sacrificing yourself for your art. How far is too far…??? But then on the other hand I question what is enough? You can learn structure, and skill and tricks and recipes to create something lovely but does it matter? What’s the point if you’re not throwing yourself into it…not driven by it or starving for it or succumbing to the act of creation whole heartedly?
Perhaps its a romantic notion I have always had tucked away in my mind’s eye…but I want my heart thumping in my throat when I’m creating…I want to push the limits further each time I work on a new project. I want to feel alive and nervous and afraid…and leave a small part of me in everything I do. If I don’t…who will care?
Do I create so that people will notice me? Yes. To a degree; yes. But I also create to effect, to make people question, to shock, to create a response, to inspire and awaken…and yes…I am out there right now as I write this…but I feel strongly about it….I’ve discovered this over the last couple years of my creative journey. I’ve discovered that I need to put it on the line…I need to push and fight and struggle…and that that makes me feel alive.
If that means that I gradually lose pieces of me…then so be it. That’s my choice. (my dramatic, self indulged choice). But my choice. It just doesn’t feel enough otherwise.
I don’t need mountains to climb. Although a few crazy marathons might do me well….but I do need this. I need to really break myself apart…take little pieces of my insides and nervously expose them to anyone willing to look.
I do not want to be safe.
I’m not even sure I want to be ok all the time. That probably sounds stupid…but…I’m ok with it…it’s part of the ride…part of my ride.
Perhaps I’m a masochist.
So be it.
Right. So I’ve lost my speaker…hopefully about to find someone who can fill in cause; damn! It’s a speech worth hearing!!!! I’ve finished the rest of the signs, I’ve written my very short speech, I’ve received my shirts and I’m drinking wine….Holy shit. Holy shit.
I feel slightly desensitized to my actual art since it was hung yesterday and I’ve spent time around it the last two days. That is a good thing. If you don’t know me….I cry at any thing I am even close to achieving. You would think that would make me shy away from these things…funny enough, it does the opposite…I just keep creating new goals, events, stunts….and I continue to cry….analyze me if you’d like but it’s one heck of a fricking trip!!!
So tomorrow I will try to stay busy. I will clean the house and try not to sweat…and then I will get dressed….like I’m getting ready for a funeral or something else as equally dramatic…and I will go to this show and watch people stare at my stuff with a judgemental eye. Why do artists do this again? I remember….because we have something to say…I have something to say and these people who have really chosen me…have stories to tell. Damn I am lucky to be a part of that!!!!!!!!
Have you ever attempted to hang art for a show? Before this I had not…but believe me…if you ever consider doing it please do a lot of research before hand. I spent so much time focusing on just the completion of the pieces (silly me) that I wasn’t prepared for this part of the process. It makes me ill to my stomach on a daily basis. I actually haven’t felt this kind of intense, suffocating, pressure ever…that I can recall.
Basic framing for pieces that are not a small, conventional size are approximately $40 a piece. That’s for the cheapest, basic model. I have twelve. Foam board warps. So to hang pieces mounted to foam boards for a longer period of time (my show is hanging for two months) is not a good idea. Wood boards also warp depending on the weather and temperature, and are also about $30-$40 per piece. There is acid free tape and then non-acid free tape. If you don’t want your pieces to yellow over time use everything acid free. There are some art supply stores that will cut the foam board for you so that you don’t have to struggle with an exacto knife and a metal ruler. And then where do you store them?
Sick. I feel sick. Eight months I have spent working on these pieces and now it all comes down to how to hang them. I wish I could take really good pictures of them, keep them safely tucked away in a portfolio and just show off the photos. I wish I could fold them away into a golden box that would preserve them forever as I enjoy the smell and taste of achievement. I wish I could close my eyes and the very kind shoemaker would make beautiful frames for each one and leave them by my bed as I slept.
That’s it. The creating is the important part right? I’ve done that. I have completed a beautiful collection that I wasn’t sure I would ever quite complete…and now I would like to just squeeze my eyes shut…just like I would as a young child when my parents were fighting or the car suddenly had a flat tire…I would like to squeeze them shut and reopen them when they are hung and the show opening is about to begin.
No wonder so many artists never go so far as to have a show. No wonder we are discouraged to go into such a difficult career/hobby. No one wants to do this part of it. No one wants to spend hundreds of dollars to expose their prized creation for others to criticize.
One week until the show with still so much to figure out….give me a year or so and I will be at it again….crazy ass artists…..