KAYLA EDMONSTON

CategoryWriting

ON BRAND

TWO ARTISTS, TWO GREEK SALADS, TWO SMALL BOWLS OF UNAPPETIZING CHICKPEAS, AND ONE SELTZER LATER…

Hillside diner at 7:15 pm. See you soon.

You know those conversations that no matter how many times you explain to someone, they simply don’t get it? Despite knowing you better than you know yourself, you can’t get the words out to properly do justice to the conversation you’ve been having in your head for the last few weeks? The conversations that are by far the hardest to express without coming off as condescending or rude because there’s no nice way to say: You don’t fucking get it because you’re not an artist.

Not that I am some grand artist or have any form of recognition to my name, I am simply another fool waiting on my big idea. As I’ve mentioned in my previous blog posts for those who read them, I’ve started to understand that being an artist is a state of mind. It’s seeing a show, hearing a song, watching your mom follow the same recipe and thinking of a painting, a sketch, an idea. It’s seeing inspiration in the unordinary and adding your inherently unoriginal touch to make it yours. It’s the perfect amount of larceny without actually being incarcerated and being celebrated instead because you’ve managed to combine whatever generic identity you’ve taken on in this lifetime with some already thought of concept, idea, painting, etc. Because as much as it kills me NOTHING IS FUCKING ORIGINAL.

I guess you could follow whatever cliche and say as long as it’s yours, it’s original. But nothing in this lifetime or world is ours to claim. Every idea, feeling, thought we could potentially have is a direct result of something we’ve known into existence or some pre-existing concept that has trickled down into every part of our brain. So what do you do now? Do you wait till someone has some ridiculous original idea like printing out Instagram photos that belong to other artists and pinning them up in a gallery? No shame to Richard Prince, we agree to the terms and conditions of Instagram. Yes, I completely agree with letting other people profit off my face for artistic recognition and fame that somewhat belongs to me because it’s my Instagram post, but whatever. Of course, that couldn’t be my original and groundbreaking idea because I was too busy wondering if the world we live in is actual and not some poor imitation of the real one. Cause for some reason I can’t help but think that there is more. This just can’t be it.

I hate to quote the Verve, and their one pretty catchy song, Bittersweet Symphony, but please gimme more than the life I see. I’m stuck. I need there to be more. I need to know if there is more than the world I see. I need to know if outside this shit imitation that there is a real-world where our ideas our unchanging and eternal. You’d think these thoughts would stir up an idea, a painting, just anything. But of course, I had to think myself into a rut. None of these feelings are actually mine because they are common side effects of being an artist. I just want to know if my generation will have an expressionist movement, or to my disbelief a dadaist movement? Or please just answer me and tell me who the next Pollock is? Do we even have one? Or does a modern Klimt exist? Better yet, maybe the art of our times’ are simply shitty Dumas paintings. Who knows. What I do know is that I can leave this diner a little less unfulfilled, a lot happier, and a slight bit teary-eyed. As I say goodbye to one of my favorite people, in the purple lit parking spot, I know that this is all I could ever ask for and more.

HIM: “MAKE ART”

ME: “YOU TOO!”

HIM: “PICK A DAY!”

ME: “ANYDAY”

The final conversation is short and genuine. We laugh, hug, and I drive away in my small, electric blue fiat.

des risques

A reoccurring theme has seemingly taken a course in the realm of my reality. I recently started working part-time at Louis Vuitton located in Americana, in the midst of the luxury brand’s transformational, fashion-forward Spring 2019 Cruise Collection. In my time working here, I’ve come to realize the extent to which art is replicated, reflected, and remembered in the luxury fashion industry. Louis Vuitton’s emblematic brand image consciously pays homage to their heritage by preserving Louis Vuitton’s authentic and original ideas while simultaneously conceptualizing revolutionary styles to uphold the modern perception of the brand.

At the mere age of 13, Louis Vuitton embarked on a journey to Paris by foot. It would take him two years to finally reach his destination. This journey speaks volumes on the notion of daring to take risks. 

Louis Vuitton’s voyage has compelled me to defy the conventional restraints of my reality through such risks. Yet unlike my prior choices, these are driven by the pure nature of living a creative life. For a brief period of time, I was compelled to live in a manner that made me willing to do anything for the thrill of it all. But ironically, as keen I was on being “being alive,” the more I was taking away from my livelihood. I began to force an unnatural excitement to my life with each risk, and with each repercussion, the more destructive I became.

I compromised the thrill of original ingenuity with risks that hindered my ability to create and produce. I had no artistic output and as a result, wanted nothing more than to feel alive. I externalized this unfulfilled sentiment by looking in all the wrong places; in places and people, I most definitely should not have found solitude in. Though it allowed me to see that as an artist, there is only one way to survive. My livelihood is dependent on my will to create artwork, not just artwork for display but work that makes critics feel something. To be the mediator between their conscious emotions and their subconscious thoughts.

But in order to be a successful mediator, I must channel the inner thrill that drives this creativity. It’s not a matter of recognition or fame, but instead the constant flow of ideas. Being an artist is a point of view. It is the manner in which you perceive the world for what it is. It’s the mental landscapes that come to mind when you think of your childhood, your teenage years, and the bits in between. It is the remembrances of scents and audio clips of loved one’s voices. It is the experience of coming alive within your work.

the realist has no illusions

As I near the end of my first semester of college, I’ve come to realize that I have far too much time and at the same time far too little. I’ve always fussed with the minor things that are beyond my control. And the truth is, I have absolutely no say in how my life is actually to go. I’ve spent almost two semesters torn between pursuing something I know I’ll have a job in and fulfilling something I’ve always known I’ve wanted. It’s conflicting when you’re caught in the middle. But really, there isn’t a middle ground.

I’ve started to flip coins. I’ve used this to figure out the little decisions in my life. Heads’ is sushi for dinner, tails’ is Mexican. The coin tosses, lands in my hands, and of course flipped once more. I get tails. I’m disappointed. I know I did not actually want to eat Mexican for dinner. Instead, I get sushi. These simple tasks require immediate decisions yet I can’t come to the head to make a decision. At least for now, but that’s what the coin is for.

This last semester, I’ve tried to convince myself of what I really want. I’ve reassured myself that the fashion industry is where I belong. I guess I enjoy fashion but it has not fulfilled me in the ways I’ve expected it to. Before I graduated, I was beyond excited to go to college, to start fresh, grow up, and live out the dream I’ve played in my head. I have finally gotten to experience the bits of independence of growing up from riding trains during the wee hours of the night and accidentally getting offered the happy hour menu at 24-hour brunches spots near Union Square despite being young enough for free entry at the Whitney Museum. In a lot of ways, I’ve been truly happy with how the first few months of college turned out. But again, in a lot of ways, I’ve found myself asking if this is all there is?

Since I’ve started college, I’ve developed this will to leave an imprint. Or some sort of recognizable mark on the planet. I don’t know how I’ll do it or when at the least. But I want to be something great. I wanted to exceed the limits I’ve set on myself. If this this all there is, I want to be all that I can and more. I find it strange that I am so keen to being alive, yet still so scared of actually living the life I want.

So, I’ve decided to flip a coin once last time. Heads’ is fashion business, Tails’ is fine arts.

And the coin flips.

Heads.

I don’t want heads. I know I want fine arts, and that is exactly what I’m going to do.

Farewell For Now

I’m seventeen and three days away from officially graduating high school. I don’t have my license yet and now realize it’s a lot harder than I thought to say goodbye to my favorite teacher.

Graduating only started to feel real once I made my first college schedule. Two Monday courses, a Tuesday all to myself, two back to back evening courses, and a required English course on Friday. I am most definitely excited to graduate, but before I graduate, I think it’s time I’ve reflected on the past year through an extremely overdue blog post.

This year has been strange. I started to pack my own lunch and discovered DoorDash delivers really amazing Thai food. I started to realize that I hate working on familiar projects. I cried over a cornucopia filled with disturbingly creepy heads.  I learned that going to the pond with people that aren’t necessarily your friends isn’t the greatest idea. I’ve learned that it is okay and sometimes necessary to make bad decisions. I’ve learned that crying to your favorite teacher in his office while workshops continue outside is completely okay. I’ve learned that life will always continue.

For the first few years of my high school career, I never experienced anything more stressful than a poor essay grade or a brief disagreement with a family member. I’ve always worn platform shoes and picked up hot lunch in the front of the school. I spent a lot of time walking on eggshells, avoiding error, conflict or anything or that sort of nature. I always apologized for things that weren’t quite my fault and I always made sure to divide my lunch with at least four other people. I tried unbelievably hard to be the most liked and the funniest person in the class. I also never showed up in sweatpants to school.

As my graduation nears, I accept an undefined territory with that realization that mistakes are meant to be made, feelings are supposed to get hurt once in a while, and this goodbye is just a see you later.

Molten Lava Cakes are Great

I never thought I’d be writing this blogpost. September of my senior year I settled on pre-med. I now realize that isn’t something you can settle on. It just seemed easier to pick a more guaranteed path. I mean it’s pretty hard to be unsuccessful as a doctor, right? Whenever I was asked about my plans for college I’d reply, “I think I’m just going to go to med school, or “I think I’m just going to do the whole dermatology thing.” I completely erased the idea of  art school and told myself that art was a hobby, not a career. I didn’t want to make the decision of going to art school, so I avoided the decision as a whole. I guess it’s a natural fear of being out of control. I want to be in control of every aspect of my life even though realistically, it is completely impossible. I know how completely unhealthy it sounds, but you’d be surprised at how easy it is to avoid decisions.

By November, with less than three months, I realized I could not turn away from art school. I had almost settled on medical school.  12 years of debt and a lifetime of self inflicted boredom. I almost pursued a career in the medical field not because I enjoyed science or helping people, but because I was too much of a coward to decide on what I really wanted.

Making decisions is something that I need to get over. It feels like I’m stuck in a restaurant sometimes. I am torn between a creme brûlée and molten lava cake. Two amazing desserts but which one do I really want? Exactly. I don’t. Both seem great, right? Do I really settle for the lava cake? Then again is that settling? Lava cakes really are great.  I just need to learn how to decide between them and just pick. Not even decide, it’s just a matter of doing it. I need to learn how to live with my own decisions. I need to learn that making the wrong decision is okay too. Who knows. Maybe I will hate art school and I was better off at medical school. Who really knows. What I do know is: making a decision based on fear is never a good idea. This blog post isn’t really insightful because it’s just the way things are. It’s just a reiteration of what I’m supposed to know. Just following what I know is not a strong suit of mine. That is also okay. It’s just something I have to work on.

By the way, I’ll take the sorbet. I’m not in the mood for a lava cake or creme brûlée.

Reed Pen

I found one of my old blogposts from freshman year, and I couldn’t help but cringe. I thought the bigger the words, the smarter I sounded. Honestly, I’m 3 years older now and I still don’t know what half the words I used mean. I couldn’t help but notice how unauthentic it sounded. It didn’t sound like me. Instead, it sounded more like the direction set on the bottom of a DIY art project on youtube.

I wrote, “What I think complimented my graphic comic was the choice of ink in the final sketch. In my opinion, the final decision of using ink suited the mood of the comic. For instance, the ink chosen was dark… from this, I learned how to draw with a reed stick.”

I learned how to draw with a reed stick. Well, obviously. The medium for the project was a reed stick. It’s a given that I would learn how to draw with a reed pen. I don’t really know what I was going for with the “the mood” part in that. It was a comic about a satanic robot. It kind of sounded like I combined a rhetorical analysis and a direction set into one. Poor choice on my part. That’s not the point of this blogpost though. I was trying so hard to sound smart. I realize now, nothing sounds dumber than trying to sound smart. Blogposts aren’t meant to be genius. Blogposts just have to be honest. Of course blogposts will be tedious, painful, and gruesome if you can’t come to terms with your own process. If you hate a project..write about it. Pretending to enjoy something won’t make you a better artist. Maybe a better liar, but that’s pretty much useless. Unless you have to take a lie detector test, but the chances of that happening are usually pretty rare. Coming to terms with the process of something is probably the most important part of any project. If a project takes away from your velocity and makes you cry.. write about it. Don’t try to sound smart. Don’t try to take away from the honesty of your artistic process. Bigger words don’t make you sound smart. Rhetorical devices don’t make you sound smart either. The truth is you’re probably not as smart as you’re trying to seem. But that’s okay.

The chance of being a genius at 17 is unlikely. I’d rather take my chances with honesty.

Anyway… here are my reed pen drawings. I learned how to draw with a reed pen! 

Detect this.

I’ve never really experienced a “non-highschool problem.” Most of my problems have been rooted to my low self esteem, irrational rational thinking, concerning amount of skepticism to undefined territory, and other commonly found side effects of being a teenager. Until recently, I’ve started to feel the coming end of my childhood. I am 17 now and I guess this is the introductory greeting to adulthood. I mean I’m not quite an adult but in a year from now I’ll be able to vote, take the F train alone on a Saturday night, and come home without having to explain myself. These are things I should be excited for. With adulthood comes these anticipated gifts. I’ve looked forward to being an adult. Maybe I’ve rushed it.

 

I don’t really know how I feel about a lot of things. In fact I cannot really register any of my emotions. I’ve always planned my reactions. When things are bad, act sad. When a friend is upset, slowly say “aw” and lean in but not too close. Personal space is important. When a teacher asks why you did not do homework say, “I’ll hand it in tomorrow.” Shows remorse for being an unapologetic, insincere, forgetful piece of shit. Also shows initiative. You’re willing to make it up. What adulthood doesn’t warn you for are the things you cannot plan for. The things you do not anticipate. The things that hurt. To whoever is really reading these blogposts, whether it be the Russian hackers I’m warned about, the fellow classmates that need ideas to steal for their extremely late blogposts, I’ve come to confess that I’ve come undone.

 

Maybe I am over exaggerating and my current situation really is not bad and I am just being the immature teenager I am. Maybe my problems are because of my selfish tendencies and I’m writing this blog out of my own self pity. I just feel like with my adulthood, I am changing. That was obnoxiously obvious and clearly I am. Just right now I am changing for the worst. I don’t feel like Kayla. I have not worn platform shoes in over 8 days. My outfit was all grey today and I wore sweatpants. My lunch was cold because I was too bummed to put it in the microwave.

 

I feel like I have to use this to reflect. My adulthood is coming, There is no doubt about that. I just have to learn to detect right path to follow.

I hope this sounded honest. It really was.

Criticize Me

I’ve always struggled to call myself an artist. I’ve never really felt that I’ve lived up to the title. I was recently discouraged by a role model I idolized throughout my artistic career. I sought “resources” to help the process of my portfolio. I never saw any flaw in it. I saw it as an accomplishment really. Rather this was seen as “taking the shortcut” or other words “cheating.” I don’t really understand how seeking resources is cheating, nor seeking the upper hand. Despite the apology I received shortly after, the commentary resonated with me for an extended period of time. It’s really hindered my “velocity” as some would call it.

I often feel like the key to being an artist is independence. I’ve become reliant on resources to ensure my process. I do not think I would be remotely capable of completing a portfolio on my own. This is my doubt speaking and I know I really should not rely on my inevitable doubts but I cannot help it. I know I am not thinking clearly and despite my conscious understanding, I cannot bring myself to not listen to this part of me. I guess part of being an artist is having these doubts. I sometimes feel like I am back to square one. It kills me though because I’ve surpassed these obstacles.

I want to be deemed talented and I want to have confidence in myself and my artistic abilities. It really just seems like a scam. I feel like I’ve been ripped off. I want the best. I want to be talented. I want to deem myself competent. Competency is always a tricky one. After a brief episode, I’ve always come back to questioning my ability. I know with being an artist, criticism is a given. Except this criticism constantly clouds my judgment.

Criticism is most definitely something I need to work on. I can’t see the light in the criticism, nor can I see the strengths in what I present. I emphasize the part I think of as “wrong” meanwhile there really isn’t a right or wrong to art. I know I ‘ll have to prepare myself because I’m going to need to handle it later on. Especially in college. I’ll be in an environment filled with entitled opinions about my artwork. And don’t get me wrong, not everyone in college will be an artist. But everyone sure is a critic.

I DON’T HAVE VELOCITY!

Art means nothing. If an artist second guesses herself she’s immediately viewed as incompetent! If an artist doesn’t engage in the work ethics that her peers do, she’s incompetent! Any form of weakness is basically viewed as incompetency! Art doesn’t mean anything. No one really has talent! Artists just think the more they whip out the easier it’ll become to gain talent! HA! I don’t whip out art work as fast as my peers so I am incompetent! I lack velocity behind me! I am incompetent! No velocity means no talent! I don’t have a single portfolio piece that makes me stand out from everyone else because I don’t have velocity! Colleges will never think anything of me! It does not matter! I am just a fraud! I’m not an artist and I don’t care anymore. I don’t want to be anyway. Where is this coming from Kayla! Why are you angry? Why are you mad? I’m not mad, I’m just incompetent! I have no talent and I never will. Maybe if I just whip out pieces as fast as everyone else I’ll get asked to go to SUNY PURCHASE too! Too bad I’m just a fraud. My art means nothing thats why it gets thrown out every year! Too bad I have no velocity to fix it! What a shame. There’s my 200 words to get to me to 1200.

Experiment

I found myself incapable of completing the heads. Now this is where my process comes into play. I was ready to hand in a mere four heads. I was ready to stop a two week long process with four heads. Pathetic, I know. I began to hand out clay to everyone in the class. An artist has a team, right? If I was going to finish these heads, I was not about to slave another two weeks of time that I don’t have to boredom. I began to pass out the small styrofoam balls to my teachers, my peers, anyone. Tons of artists have artist that work with them. Yes, I know. I am not well known, established, accomplished, or rich, but I can try. Chihuly has a team and in no way am I putting myself on the same level as Chihuly. My sculptures are not exhibited in botanical gardens. I began to slowly make it to five heads. I reached my limit ten, and I finished with thirteen. The last few heads were molded by a collaborative team of hands. Continue reading “Experiment”

BOREDOM STRIKES AGAIN

Writing about my artistic process has always been difficult for me. I’ve never understood the purpose of a process nor have I sought to achieve one. I’ve always dwelled into the possibilities of an untouched canvas, sketchpad, and territory because I’ve never wanted my imperfect errors to taint the white surface.  

I now realize now matter how eloquently I phrase that opening sentence it’s all a load of crap. It’s a wonderful way to say, I am a timid artist who lacks experience or the ability to understand an untouched canvas is a gift. But I’ve unfortunately taken that gift for granted. I’ve indulged in the wrong wonders of art. I’ve recently been working on sculpting tiny heads out of styrofoam balls with air dry clay. (Disclaimer: I’ve done this project multiple times.) Except this time, I’ve come to absolutely hate this project. I figured it would be easier because of the familiarity that harbors in a previously assessed project. All thoughout my high school experience for some reason, I’ve somehow always come to working on miniature heads. Sure, at first it was fun, and the first four were tolerable. But as I moved on to make my fifth, I simply could not bring myself to do it. I stalled. I prolonged the final product, and yes, unfortunately I stalled more. I had lost the bliss of starting fresh on new surface. This surface had once been touched by multiple projects and I no longer want to do this project anymore because after a long four years, I reached the confrontation.

Yes the prolonged but inevitable confrontation: Familiarity. I’ve always been a fool to undefined territories within my realm. I’ve never wanted to reach the ultimate oblivion of starting fresh. I’ve never really stepped outside of my comfort zone. The dual battle between Boredom v.s. Familiarity. Finally. As an artist, I’m supposed to find the balance in the familiar and the unknown. I’m supposed to inch off into the deeper end. I definitely suffered the consequences of this boredom. I have never dreaded anything more than working on this project. Now writing this reflection, all I really have to say is, just unbelievable, Kayla. Art is meant to be exciting. If it’s dreadful, you’re definitely doing something wrong. However it does not mean to just stop all at once. Part of it is getting through it. No one really cares about how you got to the finished product. In general no one really cares at all about any of the artwork a seventeen year old produces. To think my art is of value is an insult to the industry and myself. I really don’t matter that much. The point is I just have to get it done. Ironic a project I’ve done before proved to be so difficult. Guess I really need to start getting more out of my projects. Man, this reflects poorly on my part. Whatever.

In the middle

“You are not as adventurous as you were last year.”

I am not a lot of things anymore, and I do not know how to cope with my lack of motivation, or desire to contribute to society in a meaningful way. I feel my naive sophomore self would be disappointed in my junior self. I no longer have this yearning to want to know myself, I no longer am curious to identify myself. I feel I am undeserving of any title, any name, or any artistic position. I sought to be an artist last year, or at least identity myself as one till recently. My uncertainty is beginning to settle in and my nervousness demeanor is nestling its way back into the crevices of my being. I am torn between doing what I would like to do and what I am capable of doing. I am torn between not knowing what I truly enjoy anymore and I am torn between pursuing something that I think I enjoy. My uncertainty has allowed me to jump to the idea that I want to be an artist, that I want to achieve in the artistic world. My uncertainty has found comfort in this childish dream that all I want is to be an artist. I have spent months dwelling on whether I was worthy enough to deem myself an artist. I wrote blogposts as well, and had conversations I thought were insightful, but now I worry I have only chosen art because it is all I know. I have never pursued anything but art, and the thought of not knowing if it is my actual passion or want is what terrifies me most.

In the previous blogpost, I was assigned to write about my future. I began to write a completely different lifestyle than what I had imagined. I wrote that I was a dermatologist. I figured I would be useful to society, cure the youth of unwanted flaws. I figured I would be content or at least satisfied.Through this assignment, I was instantly dissatisfied with this lifestyle. felt disappointed in myself for writing about something other than art. So, I began to write about art instead. I wrote that  I had a simple lifestyle, woke in the morning to an empty canvas, and fell asleep to completely full and vibrant work of art. Though cliche and lame, I found comfort in. I don’t know if art is a comfort to fall back on or my passion. I am too fearful to pursue something otherwise. I do not want to do art if this is the reason. I am not sure if I am passionate about. I am not sure about anything anymore really. I am not adventurous, and I am not anything. Maybe this feeling is temporary.  Hopefully this feeling will fade, but for now I am caught somewhere in the middle.

In my near future…

The cotton sheets shape the folds of her small figure. The single studio apartment is soundless in her  wake. She lays, bundled in an array of multicolored quilts. Her eyes, softly closed, her lips carefully pursed, and her brown locks slightly tangled. What seems to be an everlasting silence is disrupted by a man. His slender body slumps over her sleeping shoulder, as he sits on the edge of the bed. He doesn’t touch her, and he doesn’t wake her, he just looks. He doesn’t really understand her much, yet he continues to fold the sheets neatly around her while his swift hands outline the depths of her face. He is unsure of her full name, most of her likes and dislikes, casual things too, but somehow he still finds minimal pleasure in her company.  Despite her ambiguous character, he notices the minute details that tell more than she does. He notices the way she avoids eye contact, investment in personal connections,  and most importantly confrontation. He pays attentions to the uncertainty in herself, between the way her hands tremble when holding a spoon of butternut squash soup to her lips and the way she avoids the 40 seconds of conversation with the cashier when she makes her order. Even though she knows her order before entering the local cafe. She continues to sleep, his sweet disposition reminisces over soft skin. His hands smooth and gentle caress her hair as he peers over, and as swiftly and quietly as he came, the floorboards begin to creek as his worn boots trace the floor, a gentle rhythm hums and as the door lightly closes. In the silence of the small apartment, she wakes.

Her small feet hang over the slightly raised mattress. Her stiff body slides out from under the covers. She fetches her cashmere sweater and worn out jeans. The fabric above her knees is slightly faded, yet she pays little to no attention to it. She decides to eat later in the evening and progresses to the outside of her single bedroom apartment. In the crisp winter air, she is greeted by the lively ambiance of the Williamsburg atmosphere. Despite living in this familiar location, her sense of direction has yet to adapt to her current living area. She continues to walk on the street, and is greeted by one of the small business owners on the block. He reminds her which street connects to which, and which street leads to the small market. His slight act of kindness pleases her more than the small businesses man will ever come to comprehend.

She returns home to her small apartment after a day well mostly on public transportation. Her poor sense of direction is subsequently shown in the close to empty metro card. She pays little attention to the insufficient fares left on her card and enters her small apartment. She enters her room and immediately returns to the bedroom. To the left of her bed side charcoal pencils, freshly sharpened followed by kneaded erases, and leather covered sketchbooks lay in an organized array. The floor filled with a plethora of empty canvases and stacks of overfilled moleskins, swatches of color from collaged pieces lay in clusters.The familiarity of these small luxuries leave her in awe. Her hand is quick to find an ebony pencil and a sketchpad. The morning light rays fill the room, casting a shadow upon her unfinished sketch. Her hands soon to be covered by the residual remnants of this media, delicately fill the tan tinted paper. The satisfaction of this leaves her in awe, and she returns to slumber, content with her creation. She sleeps through the night as the room darkens; the celestial body in the peaceful evening casts a reassuring shadow through the half opened curtains. She will soon wake, simply to repeat the simple satisfaction of artistry.

ARTISTIC VALUES

As an artist, I value finding my true self in my artwork. 

The tangible interpretation of someone’s mind. My core values were often reflected in my work because they delivered a piece of myself I was trying to find. Subconsciously, I was searching for confidence in myself as an artist. I masked my lack of confidence by claiming I was searching for my identity. In reality, I was too scared to acknowledge the artist I am.

I figured if I was able to “identify” myself, I would be satisfied. I figured the key to my success would be declaring myself the prestigious title of an artist. Reflecting, the vague generalization was a default mechanism for actually getting to know Kayla. The overaching theme seemed sufficient enough. I associated the persona of myself with simply being an artist. 

What I realize now that in order to be an artist, I need to know who I am. The artwork I create is a direct reflection of the way in which I percieve the world. There is no measure, no defintion, no textbook ideal of what declare someone an artist. Yet, I continued to believe that there was some standard I had to reach. I was fooled by the idea of creating artwork for the audience, when I was supposed to be creating artwork for myself.

I get know that being an artist isn’t something that you study for or crash course in a couple hours. I guess in some ways you can learn traditional training by going to class, but Pollack did not take a class that taught him to revolutionize the modern art industry through a new form of painting. Dadism didn’t come from copying existing pieces. The conceptual art movement was created by making works that upended bourgeois sensibilities but instead generated works that questioned the conventional society, that challenged the norm. 

In a lot of ways, I guess you could say I was stalling. I didn’t want to acknowledge the qualities of my art that reflected me. I wanted to avoid the possibility of being known, of being seen, of being exposed. I wanted to remain the anonymous artist. But what good is creating art that doesn’t make you think? 

To me, art has become the constant battle between pleasing yourself and pleasing your audience. The true artist will please themself, yet who I am to say true. Artists live to reach satisfaction, however, I do think confidence is the most essential quality of being an artist. 

In my art, I’ve always been drawn to faces. Pretty ironic, coming from the artist that doesn’t want to be knonw. I figured the more faces I drew, the better I would be able to find out who I was. I was searching for a definition of myself in my artwork. My lack of self-identity would influence my artwork because I value the unknown.

Though the unknown is undoubtedly frightening for me, it allowed me to fall deeper into my fears. I was able to restore the lack of satisfaction I had in myself. Rather than thriving off of the satisfaction of pleasing my audience. My fear gave me this identity that I tried to cast myself away from. It gave me the piece of myself, I wasn’t ready to show. I now realize, my identity, my true self is in progress. And that is all I could ever hope for. It is my resolving satisfation. 

And this to me, is what art is. Satisfying yourself rather than the customer of your art. The contrasting ideas between what the artist delivers and how the customer perceives what is allows for the flow of conversation and ingenuity. It is tthe friction between contrary and conflcting ideas coming together as one.