Saturday, December 20, 2008

Art Blog: Lone (Artist) Ranger

“Hi Ho Silver and AWAY!”
Do you remember the Lone Ranger? I do. Despite not liking TV that much when I was a child, I loved the Lone Ranger. He just seemed so cool. There was just something about him that I admired. He always galloped off all alone to fix the world.

I think of myself as being the Lone (ARTIST) Ranger. However, It is occurring to me that my solitude and misanthropy has been detrimental to my art career. I can be so withdrawn and introverted. I go to work and then come home and hide in my studio. The past few years, my agoraphobic behaviors have been in full bloom. Having only 20K miles on the odometer of an 8 year old car is starting to sound kind of sick to me. Everybody needs to unplug from the world at times. I think I disconnect too much. Lately it is getting worse.

I have wanted to reconnect with the local art scene here in St. Petersburg. For the past few months, each week I have jotted down art events and openings on my calendar. I make plans to attend. Then the day comes and I don’t go. I have no idea why I am not eager to push myself out there.

I found a call for artists for a local event next month. It sounds like fun. I read up on it. I printed the application. I walked around my studio thinking about the work I would submit. All of a sudden, my enthusiasm disappeared. I got this greedy, possessive feeling. This irrational thought came to my mind “I don’t want to sell any of this work. I WANT IT!

LOL LOL LOL This is so silly. In fact, it goes against everything for which I truly believe about life. That is, you have to let the universal energy flow to allow new energy to come forth. It is simply a matter of out with the old and in with the new.

Another thing that would be a positive aspect of being a part of this event is I would meet new people. YIKES! Just thinking about this makes me shiver. However, just like not wanting to let go of my art, I have to let go of this self imposed isolation. It is time to move on to new things and experiences. It is time for me to realize that it is just fine to make friends.
Shoot! Even the Lone Ranger had Tonto!

Do artists really need a Tonto?


deb said...

I know this artist needs a Tonto, that's part of the reason I blog, because of all you great people out there who keep me honest and at work, who support me, and make me feel less isolated and alone. When I went back to college, I foolishly thought I would find this whole group of people like me, a peer group, I guess, and I didn't. I discovered most of the students were not as intense as me, and of course most where a generation younger too. I was frustrated, then I started doing the gallery/opening things, expecting the same thing, and I still didn't find my people! I Have a few artist friends whose work I admire and whose opinion I respect but really when I started blogging a year ago I finally found a real peer group!!! anyways, I would say that I experience the same reluctance to go to art events, they are always full of the same people around here and it gets draining after a while, I feel like I am frittering my energy away on useless social interaction. Another friend of mine is all about the networking thing, and she exhibits more and knows more people, but I guess you just have to take the path that's right for you, I know that's not the one for me. I want my work to stand on its own merits, not my social skills.

Sheree Rensel said...

Your comment "frittering my energy away on useless social interaction" is exactly how I feel. I HATE small talk. I don't have time to make fake connections. Nowadays, artists seem reluctant to be true friends anyway. When I meet up with them, I feel this overwhelming sense of every person for themselves. It reminds me of a poker game with everyone wearing sunglasses and holding their cards close to their chest!
Also, you made me realize why my agoraphobia seems to be getting worse. Now that I am all over the internet, my urge to connect with REAL people has lessened. I too get so much gratification and companionship from those who I correspond with online.
One of the problems I have had down here is St. Pete is a relatively small town. There is a very defined art clique. Many "members" have lived here all their lives. I am an outsider and a NORTHERNER to boot. I have never felt welcome. However, I am going to keep trying. Who knows. I might get my toe in the door some day.

namastenancy said...

I "hear" you on the difficulties of connecting within the art world. SF's art cliques are equally small even though this is a larger town. But I think that a lot of the socializing/smoozing to promote your career only works if you are young and preferably male. I actually do a lot of getting out and about, going to art shows, reviewing a lot of stuff (as you can see from my blog), sharing art space with 40 other artists. I can't see that it's helped my career any and I've become rather cynical about that. I've still the invisible woman and I feel too embarrassed to push myself forward in art events - plus, I can't stand the loud music! Ditto for returning to school. I went back to school as a retiree and thought that I would connect to at least a few people Nah, who wants anything to do with a woman who has gray hair and wrinkles? Years ago, an art teacher told a critique group that we have only a short window of "opportunity" to make it in the art world and if you were a woman, that window lasted about 30 seconds. I didn't want to believe her but she was right. That being said, I still try to connect with like minded people but I find them in my calligraphy groups, book making classes, and via my blog. I've met more neat people through my blog than I've met in five years of college.

deb said...

well my professors mostly wanted to "help"me make my window open... also frustrating!!