21 Mar

Just Wondering

Every now and then I take one of those silly online quizes and I am always suprised when they tell me that I am a creative soul, or a free spirited artist, or some such crap. I must have checked the boxes that I thought they WANTED me to check, not the ones that would show my REAL being.

So why do I have such a hard time accepting that I could be an artist? How and when are we able to define ourselves as artists? It’s not really like there’s a test like for lawyers or teachers, or a uniform like for soldiers or firefighters, or a specific place we go to like a factory worker or a lumberjack. I have this nagging feeling that I am just a housewife with an interesting hobby. I am a bit competitive though, and I suck at being a housewife; so I’m wary of defining myself as such. I’d rather define myself as an artist because there’s so much more possiblity with that. But can I? At what point do I cross over from cool hobby to actual artist? For me, I don’t even have a day job to quit and try to support myself as an artist. (I already ignore enough of my household chores to warrant being fired from THAT job!) Besides, one can be an artist and have a conventional job as well. Hmmm. I was just wondering…

8 thoughts on “Just Wondering

  1. Honey, a couple of things:
    1. There is no quiting. I have a contract with you. No quitting.
    2. Wife, artist, mother, citizen of the village — hey, it’s about how you view yourself. Sheesh, do you think I go through every day jumping up and down and using “soldier” to describe myself? Hell no! “Comedian” is the one I use most often (the variant is “Funny guy”), probably with “poopy-head” coming in as a close second. I’m going through life, trying to just have some fun, irregardless of how I have to whore myself to put food on the table and a roof over our heads. What I am, and how I view myself, has little to do with what I do for a living…..
    3. And I thought you had taken the Mommy test! No? Crap — I’ve been telling Zavi that for all these years. “Oh, Mommy knows that because it was on the Mommy test she had to take before you were born.” I guess today I am less Comedian and more Poopy-head.

  2. You can call yourself anything you want, but I’ve seen your work and you ARE an artist, whether you choose to claim the word or not.

  3. Kristin, I really love the first commentors remarks a lot…but if you don’t want to call yourself an artist…don’t sweat it…I don’t think its a requirement to make art (which you do)…so just keep on keeping on as YOU and if one day you wake up an say “I’m an artist”…well as the proverb goes: before enlightenment, chop wood, carry water; after enlightenment, chop wood, carry water.

  4. Kristin, I know what you mean, because as you know I’m in the same boat. Somedays I’m a fiber artist, sometimes quilt artist, sometimes quilter… but mostly I’m a nurse, mom, wife, housewife, blah, blah, blah. In the end they are all just names. How about this, I challenge you to enter a show. A quilt art show. I’ll do the same. If we get in we can officially call ourselves quilt artists! I can e-mail you and say “Hey Quilt artist!” Not only that, it will get us off our rockers and out there! Agreed?

  5. If you’re not an artist , there needs to be another definition. Your work is beautiful and original and appears to be very well-executed. Consider yourself an artist in every way…just my humble opinion. Dee, quilter from NY born in Augsburg, Germany in the dark ages.

  6. My dear Kristin. Have I not already told you that you are an artist. I was in a 5 day class with you and I saw an artist. I thoroughly enjoyed watching the artist at work. Right now it has to take a little bit of a back burner in your life, but someday you are going to soar. I predict it. I didn’t get started at this until I was past 60; you are so lucky to be in on a new and growing art form. Today, I went to a new stylist to get my hair cut and I told her I was an artist!! Felt damn good, too!

  7. Hi Artist! I meant to send my prejudicial motherly comments yesterday, but sorting and packing got in the way. But, I think it was better to let all the more objective people make their comments. Here’s what I was thinking…

    Did you have to pass a test? No, but you passed two of them: one to get a scholarship to a well-known art school, and another to graduate from that school.

    Do you have a uniform? Artists have a flair for creating one-of-a-kind outfits often incorporating artistic, hand made accessories. You do that.

    Do you go to a specific place? You were paid as a graphic designer in several respected design offices for many years.

    Do you have a day job you can quit? Yes and no. You are a mom and housewife as your second career (see above). You can’t quit being a mom, but your kids are going to quit needing you to perform that role. At that time it will be great to have your art (and Art) to fall back on.

    I think your problem is that you have always been an artist and you have no idea what it is like to be anything else. You had no opportunity to make a choice. You never needed any of the above markers, but I think they all helped hone your skills.

  8. Hey, is there room in the boat for you and Robin and me too?! And I think that’s Gerrie I see on the shore leading us in the right direction!

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