I had great news a couple of days ago which I heard in a rather roundabout, funny way!
I was reading through Facebook when I got a message from my son, Dylan, who's away at college. He said he had read on my mother's Facebook page that I had won First Prize for a piece I entered at Petersburg Regional Art Center! All that before I even got a phone call from the center itself!
The piece I won for is Bling Lady. The awards ceremony is tomorrow night, but I can't be there because we're going to the Outer Banks for the weekend to celebrate my birthday and to relax a bit for a few days. It is a wonderful feeling to get a prize for my artwork. To me it means that other people have seen what I'm trying to do with my art. Perhaps they don't get the exact same message I want to be giving, but apparently they see something which moves them in a good way. That makes me feel good.
I'm aware that once I put my work out into the world, it is no longer mine. I might still own it, but it is on its own, just like my children are, doing its own work, sending its own message, moving people on its own.
One of my students asked me the other night if it's difficult to let my paintings go when I sell them. I asked my stepmother the same thing when I first started doing art. She told me that it wasn't hard for her at all because she had done so many pieces (she used to paint portraits). I told my student that at first it was very hard. I still have the first drawing I did because I'm still completely attached to it. But now that I've been painting for a while, I'm very happy to let my work go into the world. I love it, but I love for it to find a new home too. My assumption, if someone is putting out money for it, is that they really like it and will get pleasure from having it in their home. That makes me happy. Again, it's like with my kids. I couldn't love them more, but I'm delighted to see them getting out into the world and finding their own happiness. I don't want to keep them here at home with me as they move into their 20's. It's time for them to go out and make their own mark on the world!
So, paintings, time to fly off the walls and into your own loving homes!!