I recently watched a very inspirational interview with returned astronaut Mr Chris Hadfield.
He said that he saw the original moon landing at age 6 (or 7) and from that moment on he knew he wanted to do that – he wanted to be an astronaut.
He was asked about how he got there – what steps did he take to get to where he is today.
The answer seems quite simple.
He said something along the lines of – (I am paraphrasing here because I can’t remember his exact words) – work out what success looks like to you, and what is the next step in getting closer to that goal.
My definition of “success” is still evolving.
When I started this art journey I believed that selling a piece of art was what success looked like to me. I made art and it sold. Success!
I entered competitions – made it to finalist stage and even won a couple prizes. Success!
Then I was going to be brave … and … create a large body of work … and … have a solo exhibition … Success!!!
A Mountain of Stars has outshone itself. The work I created is stunning (yes I am a little proud). It is cohesive – expresses an idea – and started conversations and up close examination of the work. That in and of itself was a success to me. When I remember how long I have been doing this and where I came from I count this solo exhibition as an enormous success.
Add to that, this was a first ever and I was nervous about the whole process, I sold more pieces than I ever thought I would! I honestly would have been happy with just a single sale because that was not the sole point of the exercise – it was more about the journey and the personal goal to create work worthy to hang on a gallery wall.
The fact that other people saw the value in what I had created is tremendously uplifting. It is the pat on the back that we all need – you are doing good work – you are on the right track – keep going…
So, my definition of success is still evolving.
My next steps towards that success are going to be baby ones – more competitions, more group exhibitions and I will be gradually working towards another solo exhibition.
I am doing something I love, I have the support of my gorgeous family (truly couldn’t do any of this without them), I have met some amazing people, and my art is touching other souls… Success!