November 26, 2009

A few thoughts on becoming an Artist

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Less than 48 hours after my exhibition opened at the QCP I was on a plane headed for Europe, ready for new adventures. It probably seems a strange way to do it but I'd already planned the trip before I was offered the QCP space.
The exhibition went well. I was thrilled with how many people came to show their support. I received the above press about the exhibition. The image 'Fog' was also featured in the arts page of the Brisbane News. I'd sold two prints before the exhibition even opened (thank you!). For a first solo exhibition I was very happy with how it went.

Now that I am finally (!!) working on a new body of work I have been reflecting on my career as an artist so far. It has not quite been a year since I graduated from university. A graduation that only just happened despite being in the top percentile for every subject I did bar the last one (it's a very long story). Two days before Christmas one teacher warned me 'You have no resilience Rachel. You will never make it as an artist unless you can develop some resilience'.

Well it has been almost a year and I feel like I am gathering strength as an artist. I feel like I have struggled with myself all year, at one stage I wanted to throw it all in, I felt like all the creativity had been sucked out of me and I hated the art world and all the incest within it.

The last two months have seen an exciting turn around. By working across multiple fields- writing, painting, photographing I have opened up new doors to ideas and new ways of working and existing. I have also, thankfully, moved beyond wanting to be someone else and stopped trying to imitate them although they still influence me and motivate me to work harder. It's taken a year to become independant. The hardest thing for me was to create work outside of University where I don't have a deadline or a teacher to give me a grade and give my work value. I am now my own judge.

I've still got a long way to go, I'm still in the starving (and slightly insane) artist category. For that I am keeping one word in my head at all times: Resilience.

I've currently got hundreds of images to sort through for my next series. For the first time I've photographed people - a major step outside the comfort zone of a born and bred introvert. I'm exploring ideas that I am not passionate about but rather completely intrigued by, which is far more interesting. I feel like I am poking my fingers into something intangible and it is wonderfully fun and satisfying. I am interested in the artist as a scientist, as a researcher exploring ideas that can't yet be expressed verbally. It's a nice feeling to be consumed by my work again.

1 comment:

josephine said...

it's quite lovely to read about your views on your own work, it musn't be easy to talk about (at least, it wouldn't be for me) but it is inspiring :)