To know what you prefer
instead of humbly saying amen to what the world tells you you ought to prefer,
is to have kept your soul alive.
- ROBERT LOUIS STEVENSON
I found this quote thanks to Erin Benzakein. I am rewatching Growing Floret in anticipation of spring and my gardens. I, like so many, have a crush on her. I love her approach to business and art. She is a creative leader with a vision and, most importantly, intention with a capital “I”. Erin mentioned in a few places that she knew she wanted to write a book someday, anstarted a blog to improve her writing, and I found the blog. Posts date back to 2011. It is amazing. She posts photos, musing and quotes. Coincidentally, I’ve been doing the same thing for two years when I post to Instagram. Most everything she does, I have started doing. It may be silly, but I feel a kindred spirit to her. Her drive is unbelievable. I need and want some of that drive. It is one thing I think I lack, not really lack, but it ebbs and flows. Obviously, I have drive sitting here at 4:30 am journaling. I have determined that the ebb and flow is directly linked to my lifelong struggle with trusting that feelings of doubt are part of the process. Also, it never occurs to me that everyone feels this way who tries to accomplish anything meaningful.
The quote that opens this post is why I make art. It is indeed what my soul prefers. The progress is fine. I have managed to sell some, create products with my images, and show them. I don’t know what I’m doing (well, I know more than I did two years ago), but I know it is what I prefer to everything else. It’s why I turned down all non-art-related projects for the last part of 2021. It felt weird to say no, and I’ve never felt more out of my comfort zone, but it was necessary. The tears came more than I liked. I intentionally wound down all work for December. It is a good month to this, but I also felt the time was not all that restful. Christmas is a job in and of itself. I also signed off on social media. If you’re a selling artist, this is kind of an awkward time not to be available to sell during the holiday season. In rethinking my times of rest and less of everything, I am looking at July and January moving forward. July will be a time of summer with my family and art because flowers will be going wild by then here in Colorado.
The week between Christmas and New Year’s will be time away, and January will be for visualizing, goal and intention setting, and reflection. Erin is a visual planner and designer, a pencil and notebook kind of person. The docuseries does an amazing job showing this. Again, another oh wait “I am inclined to do that” moment though I am shy about having walls full of paper calendars and post-its. I need reminders of what it is I want to do or what I want is pushed to the side for what the world prefers. I am an artist. I devote my life to bringing beauty and flowers to people’s lives through my art and photography.