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03 August, 2014

Getting Started

Posted by Renée Harp in news, this artist's way
renee harp in painting studio

The website is nearly finished. Launching is imminent, whether I feel ready or not.

Soon, very soon, this will be a real Blog, connected to a real Website, viewable by anyone in the world.  Today it is still part of a dream, many years in the making.  Today, I have the luxury of writing, knowing it isn’t going right out there into the world just quite yet.  And so I imagine what that will be like.  I think about what I want to say, show you, share. What will be the purpose of my blogging?  I have checked yours out, and I have found a million pictures, ideas, and words.  So many interesting tidbits!  The access we have today to the collective endeavors of so many is amazingly enriching.  It is also a little daunting….what on earth do I have to add that is unique?  So I have to trust in what I believe; that if I take great care to show up consistently as myself, then whatever it is that is essentially unique about me will find its’ place in the world.  

I don’t think this means using my blog as my free-association journal.  At this point, my plan is to share some of my journey on a list of specific topics that are important to me.

As I write this, I imagine that day when you will read my words, and see my pictures; and I know it carries a certain responsibility to add SOMETHING to your experience.  Otherwise it is a waste of my time and yours.

And so I’ve been giving it some thought.  I certainly have things I like to talk about, and I do like to share my projects with interested viewers.  This is part of what drives a blogger, I think.  The desire to show up, be heard, be seen.

And maybe for me there is another piece.  For so long the success of others, especially in the creative worlds, has seemed elusive and mysterious.  Too many times I read that “she made a piece for a friend, and before she knew it, stores were carrying her work, and orders were coming in faster than she could fill them.”  I created and showed and sold and gifted and practiced for years, wondering how such things worked.  

And I did finally figure out that there were many missing pieces in the public stories.   I think this happens in alot of our public presentation… too  much is left out for anyone to know what really happened, what it really took to “get there”.  It probably sells magazines better, and it is certainly more glamorous,  but the result is that everyone who hears these magical stories ends up feeling isolated in their experience, as an artist, as a seeker of anything, as a human.  We can’t connect to stories with missing pieces, and we can’t share our own story if it appears to be so far from what everyone else in the world is experiencing.

So maybe it is partly the therapist in me that wants to show up a little more transparently, to be seen a little more realistically.  I believe it changes my experience of the lonely artist, and I believe it allows for a connection between artists, between fellow humans.

It is an intimidating endeavor, to show up that way.  Who is completely free of any concern about other people’s perceptions and judgements?  Not me.  That is why, in part, the later stages of taking my art to the public viewing stage have gone slower and slower, as I approach the point of no return.

But that day is nearly here, and with it, opportunities I am sure I cannot even imagine.  So as I stand on the brink of showing up out in the world as an artist, not just someone who does art quietly in the studio, but someone who does it with intent to be seen, it is with excitement, anticipation, a little anxiety, curiosity, nameless fears, and great hope that the next stage of my life is even bigger than the preceding ones.

Welcome to my studio!


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