Well we weren’t planning on returning until next week. And then final plans made it Tuesday to start working on Wednesday. But here I am, Tuesday evening with 4 hours of work under my belt, and a half unpacked load spread around the house in complete disarray. It’s started early, unexpectedly and I know this is the beginning. I love it.
I went to art school as a young kid running away from home. I chose an art school in Northern Ontario, where my parents were from, I was seeking myself. Of course I chose the school who didn’t want me; but through a technicality took me in on probation. Under its administrative wing who didn’t give a shit. I struggled until I found my feet and then my wings and I soared. 7 years later I was graduating with a Masters degree, trying to find a way to pay my student loans.
I had worked as an Arts Educator for years through school, as well as an artist and studio assistant. So this was the path I pursued, teaching upper level university courses, working on an arts education internship, and landing a job as an arts educator at a new category A gallery. The gallery and I did not get along. My artist self was rearing its head, resisting the desk job as they tried to shove me into the mold that would make me a project manager. It wasn’t pretty. Nobody was happy.
So I find myself here. Lacking a larger institution guaranteeing the sustainability of my lifestyle. Facing the huge responsibility of my own fate, of my health and retirement plans, my monthly bills, the day to day of feeding myself. I do not have a partner to lean on, in fact she is in the same situation, early self-employment. I am concerned, yes. But I am optimistic*. I believe in the support of my fellow humans, I believe in positive thoughts and I believe in hard work. I believe in the power of art to win over the pessimism of those who think art is frivolous. I know it will be hard (even when it’s all numbers and scheduling like today...) but I welcome you to join me on my path to creating a living out of my true passion.
*My friends, love is better than anger. Hope is better than fear. Optimism is better than despair. So let us be loving, hopeful and optimistic. And we’ll change the world. - Jack Layton