I'm back! I realize it's been a little while since I've been able to pop on here for a chat; but I'm back in the swing of things now.
I spent the last few weeks desperately trying to reach a sales goal in my Etsy shop (which turned into a more than epic failure), but alas, I am not deterred. (Initially a little disappointed, but not destroyed) ;)
I got swept up in the desire to "sell sell sell" my artwork, and you know what...I got more joy from the art piece I recently surprised my Mother In Law with than I usually get from an Etsy sale. While I'm not one to balk at people paying for my work (it is in fact a very very high compliment in my opinion and I admire many of the talented artists who sell so well) I've realized that for me personally...I just can't get too swept up in the business side of it or art loses all joy for me.
I am a terrible business person. I couldn't sell myself to save my life. And, on top of that I LOVE giving people gifts. It's an addiction...I absolutely revel in the joy that comes across someones face when they are surprised by a gift, a kind gesture, or a little token of love. I like making people smile...and if I can do that by sharing my artwork with them, then I'll do it a hundred times over.
Over the past few weeks (as the deadline for my promotion/sales goal came hurdling towards me) I started to reevaluate what I was really trying to accomplish.
Do I want to sell my artwork? Heck yes! Do I think it's worth what I charge? You betcha (and the hand cramps, sore back and hours of involvement in each piece more than back me up)
Do I think people will buy my work? Yes, yes I do. Am I proud of what I create? Absolutely!
But, I do have a soft spot for giving art away, and I know that will always be a part of who I am. So, for me, I think it's about finding a balance between bettering myself as a business person (for the purpose of selling my work) and not beating myself up for wanting to gift my creations when I feel like it.
I am truly truly blessed (and I am grateful for this everyday) that my art is a hobby. As long as my sales help me to break even and continue to create, I'm happy. Don't get me wrong...if I could ever make a monetary living from doing this, I'd be thrilled. But, money ain't going to make or break me...because the moment it stops becoming something I love to do, just for the sake of doing it; I don't want to do it anymore.