ask

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I watched a TED Talk a few months ago by a music artist named Amanda Palmer. She blew my mind with her story about asking. Basically, her band left their label after being unhappy with the way shiz went down and she crowdfunded their music with astonishing results. She’s not alone in this method. The art world is changing. Traditional methods of selling aren’t fitting everyone anymore. As a visual artist, the idea of putting together a gallery show stresses me out to the max. Not that I won’t ever do one, but why can’t I just sell online to people who connect with my work?

I’ve been frustrated lately. If you read this blog much, you’ll have detected that. The reentry of art into my life has brought much more than paint and canvas with it. It’s brought a passion and an insight into life as a whole and who I am as a person. It mirrors my fears and my passions. And as much as I’m able, I like to share that with you. It’s why I started making the videos and showing my progression through a piece. And through that, I’ve been connecting with you in ways that I never expected. That is the part that lights a fire in me. I feel like something is happening here. Something worth exploring.

But I’m at a point where I have to ask for help. And damn, that’s hard. Because as it stands, painting isn’t my “business,” so it technically falls into the category of “hobby.” Which means I have limited funds for supplies, etc. And that scares me. Because even I can see, with my skewed view of myself, that I am supposed to be doing this. It feels too right. It connects with too many people.

In her talk, Amanda Palmer says something like: asking makes you vulnerable. Artists don’t want to ask. There is fear in asking. But the very act of asking connects you to your audience. I don’t see asking as a risk, I see it as trust. Ask, without shame. When we really see each other, we want to help each other.

So, I’m going to try a little experiment. I’ve selected a sampling of my work and made a Pay What You Want shop. It’s at the top of my site, in the menu. This is me, asking you to support my art however you can. All I ask is that you take care of your shipping in addition to what you can or are willing to pay. More details are on the shop page, as to how that works.

Too many of you have lamented over a piece of art that I made, connected with it but couldn’t afford it. I hate that. I’ve been there. And based on what I’ve read, the PWYW pricing model can really work for stuff like this. I know it’s untraditional. But when have you EVER known me to do things the traditional way?

The other thing is this: in order for this to work, I need MOAR PEEPLE to know about my work. Sharing is caring, you guys. If you believe in my work, and are inspired by my story, get the word out. If you’ve connected with one of my paintings and want to buy it, but can’t afford to pay much, FINE! Just get that bad boy on your wall, enjoy it and take a pic to share with your people online. And the thing about karma pricing is that maybe you can’t afford much now, but later you can pay more for another piece. The idea is that is all works out in the end. Let’s get this thing going.

I’m excited. And a little bit scared. But usually when I’m scared of something, it means I should just do it. So, this is me, jumping in and saying, “I trust you.”

See the shop here

p.s. I really want to find a way to use my art to help end the stigma against mental illness. For now, I am going to donate 10% of my earnings from this shop to various non profit organizations geared to raise awareness for mental health. Mainly Broken Light Collective and The Benny Fund, for now.

conduit

It’s sometimes always scary for me to film a painting. Especially one where I’m not sure what’s going to happen. But I’m going to continue to share my process because people have asked me to. Not because I think I’m some kind of expert or something. I’m only an expert in watching Netflix for hours at a time and making a mess all the time. And sleeping. I’m really freaking good at sleeping.

conduit 30x40 acrylic on canvas

conduit 30×40 acrylic on canvas

 

Here’s the making of conduit. I narrated a bit of my thoughts. Feel free to mute that. :P

 

p.s. most of my art is for sale. If you’re interested in something, send me an email carrie@stripedsock.net. I can always make an Etsy listing for you if it’s not in there yet. I’m not super diligent getting stuff listed sometimes.

the fear series

#16 i deserve to be here

I don’t want to say a lot about this, since I’ve touched on it in other posts. And I’m still processing all of it. Plus, I’m probably going to have a vulnerability hangover after sharing so many self portraits of a very personal nature in such a short space of time. Honestly, without some distinct encouragement from Flickr followers, I don’t know if I would’ve finished posting them. What an awesome group of people they are.

Take some time to read the quotes in the titles and descriptions. It will give a bit of insight into each image. I think I leveled up somehow. Maybe turned a corner. The louder the voices are telling me I’m a dumb dumb for posting these, the more I’m convinced I made the right decision.

See the whole gallery here.

 

fear

I didn’t realize when I shot this series what the story was. (I’m not sure what my deal is with series lately, but I’m gonna go with it) I just knew it needed to be told. Looking at them now and reflecting on what I’ve been dealing with internally lately, I realize it’s fear.

It never really goes away and what I fear might be different than what you fear. But it doesn’t matter. The truth is that we battle it every day. I’ve read the thoughts of some people that I consider very strong people and you know what? They still fear things. Some of them are scared shitless. But they fight it. Every day.

For me, it’s about not listening to those voices I’ve written about. Those critics, mostly from my past, from my upbringing. Sometimes based on people I actually knew. Whether people are really thinking the things that I project onto them is beside the point. I’ve fought that fear super hard in the last several years to break out of this people pleasing shell and tasted freedom I never believed I could taste. That’s why I fight.

I don’t want to get to the end of my life wondering why I was so scared to let these wonderful things out. It’s really just a vulnerability issue. For whatever reason, I have given myself limitations to what’s acceptable to show people and what’s not. All the time, my soul struggles to break out and share. I don’t know why. It just needs to come out.

Here are a few more images from this series.
can you feel the beat of my heart beat through me?

I'm in here, a prisoner of history

do not collapse into your bones

And of course, there’s the one I posted a couple days ago. There are a few more I’m trying to decide on.