How do I become the artist I’ve always wanted to be? Asking that question can be dangerous because often the answer isn’t for the faint of heart. Working on ourselves isn’t always easy, but it’s always worth the effort. On this episode, I want to show you how to hold space for what is and what will be in your art journey and how to take steps right now to build the future you.
Outline of This Episode
- [1:45] How our habits impact our results
- [4:01] The power of belief over doubt in your art practice
- [11:16] Holding space for the future YOU
- [16:45] Why “fake it till you make it” is bad advice
Become who you are
What we consistently do, day in and day out is what creates excellence. It’s our habits, our processes, and the things that we do in the studio that create our results. All the small steps we take to learn color, to become better at composition, to become fluent in the language of brushstrokes…each brushstroke informs the next and each painting informs the painting we do after that. The shorthand we eventually develop in our painting becomes our style and the nuanced discernment we use in deciding what to paint and what we want to say with our art, that’s our voice! Your style might change and evolve over time, but your voice is who you are. With each painting, you strengthen your voice and add techniques and skills that build on and influence your style. Every new realization, every “aha moment”, every bit of knowledge you collect about art in general, and your art in particular, compound on each other. The cumulative value of all those little moments is so much greater than the sum of their parts. As they continue to build on one another, each time you paint, you become more of the artist you envision.
Keep climbing your mountain
Every artist’s journey is like climbing a mountain. Not the same mountain, but their own mountain with its individual challenges and rewarding vistas. When you are diligently honing your painting skills, and strengthening your voice, you are for sure heading in the right direction. If you keep climbing towards your goal, you will inevitably get there. What a lot of artists don’t realize is that the belief in your capacity to “do the thing”, has to be stronger than the doubt. Belief is what creates the determination and resolve to keep painting. It allows you to be curious about what you have created so you can assess your painting and use it as a stepping stone that leads to your next work. When we do that, we commit to the idea that there is a version of us in the future who FOR SURE has made it to the summit. And that person is hanging out, loving the accomplishment, and waiting for us to arrive so we can go climb another peak. Believing in ourselves as artists means knowing that we eventually get to our destination, we just haven’t figured out how yet.
Hold space for the future
So what would your daily art practice look like if you KNEW that you will accomplish all your goals? How would you show up to your studio if you believed the paintings you’re working on right now are essential in getting you to your summit? You wouldn’t give up, that’s for sure. We HAVE to hold space for our future selves! That space turns your studio into a safe place that grounds you and allows you to completely focus on the work you are creating right now. It also prevents you from using the outcome of whatever painting you’re working on against yourself. One painting can no longer serve as evidence of your inability to become the artist you want to be. You STILL see what you can improve on right now, but it’s used as inspiration for what you need to improve on and not a deep existential declaration that you are not enough. Listen to this episode for more insight on becoming the artist you want to be!