Thursday, October 17, 2013

Photography and Creativity and Writing and Crafting



Part of the journey I am on lately at this stage in life is that I need to feel I have mastered something.  I am at midlife and need to feel I have something of  a marketable skill to show for it.  It is that part of me, that sent me to college and graduate school.  I have had my last child, and she is getting older; and I am working towards this next phase; as she become more and more independent.

I also, cannot deny that in my heart and soul, I am an artist: a writer, a photographer, a crafter, a creator.  And as I embrace this aspect of myself, I, more and more, need to have time every day to create.  It is my job; albeit, I do not make an income from it, as of yet, though.  In order to "indulge" this time, I feel I need to eventually have making an income as a goal.  My kids will, in the blink of an eye, need money for to pay for college.  We cannot live on my husbands income alone for too much longer.  This is the struggle. I still hear that voice in my mind that I must do something more practical, which is why I have two degrees, but currently the practical, is to find something I can do from home in this stage in life.

 (There is also the struggle of this need in my mind of it having monetary value: I have been parenting full time for ten years, and struggle with my feeling of "value"--and the feeling I have when people ask me when I am going back to work..This feeling of; this pressure of: if you are not in the work force--you are not "working"--or you are taking the easy way out, being a leech on your spouse, free-riding.."  There are all these assumptions that people do not come out and say, but are embedded in the question. There has been a building up of this feeling over the years..this feeling that I am supposed to go back to work.  And this feeling might be coming from the social pressure getting to me over ten years.)

Still, even ascending, that struggle; I cannot deny, that I also WANT and NEED to create; and I do want some kind of value from it..  Monetary would be nice.  But, also a sense of that is my "Work; my profession"  I am a MOM, but I am also this too--I am an artist; a writer, a knitter, a crafter. And a feeling that I am GOOD at what I do.  That I have skill, mastery--professionalism.  (funny I just re-read this and did not include what I have degrees in: teaching and counseling; .mainly because I cannot be either of those "professionally"  right now,  not without childcare; being away; and also going back to school to "catch up" my credentials and "hours")


 The artists' life, though, is very difficult.  Already, I find the challenge that when I start the "artists' work" I slip into a different mindset that is not very compatible to being present with my kids and what needs to be done around the home.  Ideas floating in my mind--titles, ideas of novels, then I start editing photos..and my toddler, pours out a container of cream onto the table and floor.  Being interrupted continuously, makes it very hard to "think" and carry through with ideas.  And, thinking about "ideas" does not make me a very present Mom which makes me feel guilty.  Putting the "art: aside after the set hour of work, is hard to do, once I have found a groove.  There is the fear of once putting the art aside, I won't be able to find the groove again.  Still, the biggest part of my job still is "Mother: cook, housekeeper, clothes washer, transporter, homework helper, diaper changer, etc"  That is my most important job right now... Still, there is some room to "create"..And I owe it to myself, and ultimately to our family's material well-being to try to find a creative way in a year or two to make some income while "creating"

If I can figure this out, it will be perfect, working from home, and being available  for my kids after school, when they are home sick; and also be open to the possibility of home schooling my kids during middle school years.  My son's disenchantment with school grows and grows each year.  I think he would benefit from some independent learning, and exploration.

  I need to figure out how I can provide something that people want, need..  I need TIME to do it, and to develop enough mastery of my crafts that I can feel confident that people will be happy with what I offer.

Well, here is one attempt.  I take photos all the time and some of them I am a little bit proud of.  When you take enough photos, you are bound to accidentally or on purpose end up with some good ones.  I have discovered a photo-gallery website for selling the art.  Here is mine:
http://fineartamerica.com/profiles/melinda-conway.html


I have also created an etsy account for selling knitting, but i do not have much on there yet.

https://www.etsy.com/shop/RubyheartsCrafts


On a side note;  I am making a table runner right now.  I took another class from Pine Needle Quilt Shop. http://www.pineneedlequiltshop.com/  I owe what I have learned to them for teaching me!  (and for my husband who took over while I was away at class)


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