Things Artists Don't Often Talk About

As much time as I have spent on social media, one thing I don't come across often is people discussing those moments of confusion within your artistic journey. Am I the only one having those? For the past few days, I have also been wondering whether I should write this.

Recently I have decided to launch a subscription-based service because it seemed like a great idea to offer people what they have been asking for and actually get paid for it. The idea sounded fine in theory, but God knows how much I am repulsed by the thought of making a lesson plan. Part of the problem is me trying to organize all of the knowledge I accumulated in the past 20+ years, and it is simply impossible. Also, I do not want to settle for a sub-par course offering that will provide you with 3 bullet points of practical knowledge. And then I begin to wonder if I even need to offer this service, since it will bring so much hassle to organize.

Is this maybe just a problem of a business owner? You have ideas, you think you thought them through, but you ended up being wrong? And what do you do then? Keep going back and forth? Am I just steering away from my strategy?

When I started making art professionally, I thought I needed to organize my art into streams not to confuse people as to what I actually do. I had my illustration work separated from abstract art, then I got rid of illustration altogether because it was not getting as much traction on social media... But wait, I love illustrating! It is what I want to do! Do I just keep doing it and hope that someone likes it? Wait! I don't make art for others, I do it for myself, then why suddenly I care if anyone will like it?

I had placed myself into my own box of what I define as my style. Your style has to be consistent, recognizable. But what if that's not what I want to do creatively? The whole point of making art is to free myself, and I am unable to do so by placing boundaries around my creative process. I have been wanting to try out new ideas lately, but I am afraid it will not make any sense to my followers. I also do not want to be making the same kind of art forever. I want to experiment, learn, explore. What do I even do?

At this point, I have changed my mind on few projects. I feel like I can be perceived as the kind of artist that doesn't know what she wants. But what if what I want changes all the time? My experiences, personality, and inspirations vary from day to day, how can I possibly make the same kind of art for ages if I don't even have the same thoughts as I did an hour ago? That defeats the purpose of being an artist. 

I apologize for making promises and not living up to them sometimes, but I am not even always sure what I want to be as an artist. I welcome opportunities with open arms, and sometimes they will not be the best ones, which won't be obvious at first. Like being offered to teach a class for many beginner artists and reading the contract and realizing you will be paid in "exposure" and minimal fees that do not even cover the hours needed to prepare for the lessons. And having to back out. And then tell everyone: "Sorry, no more classes!" but leaving the "because I won't be paid enough" part out because you are told not to be too negative on social media. 

I don't want to pretend that being an artist means walking through a spring meadow in search of inspiration, while the sun is beaming on my skin as my hair softly caresses my cheeks. We are constantly being told not to share our frustrations or express negativity because that’s not what people want to see. I don't want to play into the politics of people who don't discuss struggle, because I do struggle sometimes and would like some help. Got any suggestions?

And sorry for my confusing English, if it was. English is my third language.  

 

Goodbye Facebook!

Wow! What a breath of a fresh air! No, it was not due to recent data issues... well, partially it was. I have been thinking about the role of facebook in my life for the past few months.

At first, it was a neat way to keep in touch with friends. It did take away from a really life conversation, because when you saw each other it turned into "I did this and this last week", "Oh, yea, I saw on facebook". Hmm. 

Then it became a sharing central for funny videos and pictures and I kept wondering, why do I use this social media platform? I did not have an answer. Maybe I had a fear of not being instantly connected to a person I know. I am not sure. I also had a complication of my business page being attached to my personal one. I think I could sacrifice being on one less social media platform. 

I deleted my account! At times it felt like I had a need to scroll on something? What kind of thought is that even? That was a wild realization. I have an empty urge to get on social media throughout the day, that's how much of a habit social media became to me. I have been spending much more energy on creating and practicing art, even if it means doing something other than painting. 

From now on, find me on instagram or here :)

Love to all,
Svitlana

On Being Free

If you follow me on social media, you might hear me speak often how art brings me freedom. I am not sure why that is. 

When I paint, I know I am free to feel anything. I am free to be sad... I am free to be happy... It is quite a liberating experience for me. No rules exist. I have the most amazing experience when I paint against my fears. 

I have had a painting sitting in the corner for a few months now; it was a larger 30x40 in canvas. I love painting big, but this one was scaring me a little. I laid down few basic colors, but had no idea how to proceed. I kept looking at it, it kept looking back at me. I just did not know what to do with it. But few days I had a rough day at work and in business. Yoga was not helping with the release of anxiety, in fact - nothing was helping. And when I get like this - I know that it's time to paint. 

I went into the office, and put that scary canvas on my new easel. What an honor for it to be the first one I painted on the new easel? Ha ha. I poured the paint on my palette, got my rubber gloves out, put some calming music on, and "went to town"... with no fear, no limitations, and peace at heart. "But Are You Brave Like Me?" was born that night. 

From the technical point of view, I used peach/orange and blues, reds and greens (complementary groups) to bring this piece together and give it unity. I made smudges, imprints, used hands without a brush, and dipped brush into different colors at the same time. Art is fun :)

I am not ready to part with this one yet, but stay tuned and subscribe to my newsletter to be the first one to know when it goes up in my shop. 

 

Svitlana MartynjukComment
First Event

Hello everyone!

Especially Michigan!

On this beautiful Saturday I wanted to let you all know that for the first time ever, I will be participating in an art event. I always wanted to participate in some artistic event, and I was chosen to be one of the competing artists for the Reo Town Art Attack. All of the artists will be painting parts of a bike lane.

If you are anywhere near Lansing, MI on Saturday, August 26th - stop by and say hello :) Would love to meet you in person!

 

Welcome!

Hi guys!

I want to welcome you to new and wonderful place that is my website/portfolio/shop all in one. It has been difficult trying to redirect everyone from one place to another depending on what kind of information they were looking for. 

I will be more than happy to hear any suggestions or input that you might have, or if you noticed misspellings (since English is not my first language).

As always, I am easy to reach by email hello@svitlanas.com

 

 My kitties are enjoying morning sunshine and pretending that the chair belongs to them.

My kitties are enjoying morning sunshine and pretending that the chair belongs to them.