If I Knew Then…daily tips for Artists starting out (and those mid-career who need a pep talk)

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INTRO

A couple of days ago, I wrote a blog post about the yearly Halloween daily drawing challenges that happen every October, and how excited I get by them, but ultimately end up feeling defeated because my work just doesn’t quite fit in. With that said, I I decided to create my own challenge and called it “Luxtober.” (click here to find out more about the challenge)

In that vain, I’ve been thinking about my life and career and how I’ve never quite fit into any mold, social group, religious path or family. I often wonder how it’s possible that I’m in the most misfit of careers (or social groups) yet I still don’t fit in. Shouldn’t I feel like I’ve found my tribe with the artists?

My life is made up of bits and pieces of things that resonate with me, where I capture the elements of experiences that I enjoy, and add them to my arsenal. I came out of the womb a mix, my nationality is a crazy blend, and I’ve journeyed through life in search of finding that one thing/group/person that just clicks, and would automatically give me that the sense of belonging. The further along I get on this journey the more clear it becomes that that’s not going to happen, and the bits and pieces I’ve been collecting this whole time IS my life, and that’s exactly where I fit.

I don’t know if anyone truly feels like they fit in. Are we all islands, putting on our sun-kissed similes for all the tourists that visit, yet, at heart, we are alone. Maybe some do feel like they fit, and if that’s you, I’d love to hear your story!

I'm not going to dive into that psychology right now, but after creating, and posting, "Luxtober," I feel like I need to offer some advice for others who struggle to find a place.

STARS IN YOUR EYES

I think of all you artists starting out, with stars in your eyes, and I want to offer some tips to help you navigate these crazy seas. Art is all I’ve ever known, or wanted to be. I don’t feel like I ever had a choice in what I was going to be “when I grew up,” as this life chose me from the start. Would I choose it again if I knew then what I know now? I don’t know. It’s hard. Not in that coal miner way (mad respect for coal miners) but in the “challenge you to your core being every single day of your life” way. Art is cerebral, your existence is to question everything, including yourself.

A big chunk of your life is spent alone in your head, with no one able to answer your questions but yourself. The waters get deep, but they aren’t ever strong enough to totally consume you, as long as you remember to relax, breathe and float. It’s oftentimes when you tense up and fight it, that you’ll begin to drown. We borderline insanity, and walking that tightrope of crazy/creative is hard work. It’s that mind space that takes it’s toll on so many. It’s the reason why it’s “normal” for me to hear I’ve lost an art friend to an overdose or suicide. Those are escapes that make sense to me. When I hear of someone dying of natural causes, that’s shocking to me.

DAILY TIPS: MY PERSONAL CHALLENGE

My challenge to myself over this next year, Sept. 21, 2018-Sept. 21, 2019, will be to give you a tip each day to help you stay afloat, navigate your career, lend an ear for when you’re confused, and hopefully offer a little bit of advice to those starting out, as well as those who are mid-career and questioning their existence. I have to challenge myself with this because even after all this time, I’m still a major procrastinator! If I find the key to unlocking that issue, I’ll be sure to pass it along.

I don’t have all the answers, but I do have experience, and what I can offer is what I’ve learned along the way. If any of it resonates with you, and maybe even makes you laugh (a lot of times what we do is actually quite funny when we look back!), then I’m happy to have brought a touch of light to your life.

I’ll be combining career navigating tips with life hacks and random tricks, all of which I’ve gathered along my way that have helped me in some significant way.

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AND, Don’t forget to follow along on Instagram @theviviennelux for daily work in progress posts.

See ya tomorrow.

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