Monday, November 25, 2013

Taking it personal or not?


Work in progress.

I was talking to a friend the other day that is very business savvy and It hit me. I'm never going to be rich, and that's fine. Let me explain: She was telling me that I should take my business as a business and not as something personal because I told her that I still felt all excited if I made something and it gets sold right away not much because of the money, but because that means that someone out there loved it so much that was willing to spend money on something I made and was actually waiting for me to post it for sale. That could only mean love. The same thing happened if something I made didn't sell. I get sad. These last 8 years have been a roller coaster of emotions because I get the same feeling EVERY SINGLE TIME.   She told me that I should stop feeling that way, the what I made was not who I was, just something I made. Although she's right in a way, I just can't help it.  Take for example my dolls.  When I finish them I usually sit them together, while they wait to be picked and go live in a new home. I can't see them as products.  When I make 5 and one of them doesn't sell (for some estrange reason It's usually the yellow one), I look at them and they seem to change their face for a sad one. And I feel bad for them because they didn't get the chance to go travel the world and find a forever home (they're welcome to stay with me but they weren't made for that).  And I start doubting myself. Is it that I'm not good enough? Doesn't people don't like what I do anymore? Weren't they as cute as they should be? Did I miss something? And the list goes on and on. I can get very irrational with this.  It never occurs to me, for example, that people is out, busy and they didn't see them when I post them in my Instagram account. Or that people is already sleeping like a normal person and it's not working and checking their Facebook or Instagram while I post my work in progress at the insanely time of 2:00 am in the morning. Nope. That doesn't cross my mind until Mr. Danita kindly reminds me that they're not all crazy like me and stay up until 3:00 am working when they could be resting.  

Am I wrong? Is it wrong to feel that way about what you do? After all, art is very personal. I can't see it just as a product that you make and let it go.  I could just sit and paint a lot of stuff that I know for sure will sell but that wouldn't have soul. I don't release as many original paintings as before because I want each of them to be special. Every single thing that I make I make because I love it. And I would hang it in my house, and I would wear it, and I would play with it. And when I make something a little piece of my heart and soul goes straight to that creation, and if you love it or hate it, then you love a bit of me (or hate it). And as much as I'd like to not take it personal I don't think I would be able to do that. And when I do, I think I will stop making art.


39 comments:

Sandy said...

I believe just the fact that you as an artist can put yourself out there is a feat in itself. That takes a lot of courage. It's like opening your heart up and waiting for it to be crushed if someone says anything terrible about your creations. This is why I can't do art swaps. I make the art but love it so much I wonder will other people love and appreciate it as much as I do. Do they understand how much went into making it? It's so hard. I don't post many photos anymore because if no one responds then I wonder if my work is good enough. Then one day it hit me. I make my art for me. It makes me happy to create this art. And I started learning to let what others think go.

Maybe others aren't able to buy your beautiful work right now. It could be them and not you. I love your work and only own one piece, a bracelet. I wear it a lot and get so many compliments on it.

I understand and I don't think you're taking it personal. It's how you feel.

lifesabeautifulmess said...

the day you stop taking it personal is the day you quit making great art. Being an artist is intensely personal and only the people who are willing to bare their soul will become artist. Otherwise everyone could be an artist. I believe your friend was in her way trying to help because she doesn't like seeing you sad or on an emotional roller coaster. However, a lot of people do not realize how much of yourself you put into every piece of art. And you make fantastic art. So please take it personal but not to heart, because I would hate to see you stop being such a great artist

lifesabeautifulmess said...

the day you stop taking it personal is the day you quit making great art. Being an artist is intensely personal and only the people who are willing to bare their soul will become artist. Otherwise everyone could be an artist. I believe your friend was in her way trying to help because she doesn't like seeing you sad or on an emotional roller coaster. However, a lot of people do not realize how much of yourself you put into every piece of art. And you make fantastic art. So please take it personal but not to heart, because I would hate to see you stop being such a great artist

susiecarranzastudio said...

i completely understand how you feel - i feel the same. and although i also understand the business aspect of "not taking it personally", i find it hard NOT to take it personally, since creating our art is such a personal thing for most of us. ♥

Cynthia Myers said...

I would bet that your friend isn't an Artist.
If you aren't an Artist, it's hard to understand. I used to create paintings and make one of a kind little dolls for my nieces. They were always so thrilled and would spend forever looking them over and loving them. I enjoyed every moment of the creation process. Then people kept bugging me to sell my work and I've just started trying. I recently spent hours and hours on a commissioned dog painting and the person loved it so much that she cried. Then she paid me $25.00. I felt crushed. I couldn't speak. I hate creating to sell. I can't make a living this way! People so many times do not appreciate the time and love that went into a piece. I really question if this is what I want to do. To take what I love and have people not appreciate it. I'm rambling, but... I understand and I want you to know that you create Art that is obviously made with Love and made from the Heart and there are people who appreciate it and thankful that you released it out into the world.
xoxo

Christina Carnoy said...

I feel the same! And I think all that love makes beautiful art!

Christina Carnoy said...

I feel the same and I think all that love makes beautiful art!

Pam Drapala said...

Dear Danita, Your art is an extension of yourself. When you make your art, you put all of your heart and love into your art. When you sell it, it is as though they were your children going to live at a new home. Sometimes, an item just won't sell. . . that is going to happen as not all your children always leave the nest all at the same time; may stay behind. On the other hand, I notice that for the past few years that your art has increased in popularity and so have the prices of materials have increased with years, so it stands to reason that prices for your art will increased. When I like something a lot, I do whatever I can to purchase that item as long as the item is not too expensive for my pocketbook. Sometimes, depending on the month of the year, I just don't have the extra income to buy something I see at your store. Those things happen. This week, I purged my home; I put away all the things in my home that don't give me pleasure to look at in my home anymore. Some items went into my gift bin, some went into the donations bag (Salvation Army), and others I will give away to family because I know they will use the items more than I. Did you know, not one single item that I have purchased from your store was given or put away because I enjoy looking at all my Danita Art Frida jewelry, calendars, paintings, and moo cards? They make me happy. As long as I can afford your art, I will continue to purchase it. Continue to enjoy creating your art; it makes people happy including me. Hugs, Pam

Claudy Circolor said...

bella, te escribo desde chile
I am clothes designers , te entiendo, siento lo mismo, es algo que compartimos varias
fuerza

caheli said...

I love you Danita. I have followed you for ages. I read every single newsletter and try to like everything on FB. I was even lucky enough to buy an original from you in eBay ages ago! It is one of my treasures. It's the 8x10 canvas that you made when you were going through something and it says "here's my heart. Take it please". I love seeing your blogs and the amazing things you make. I just can't afford the pieces I love. I hope that helps ease your mind! You are amazing.
Ciao!
K

Nathifa said...

girl please...your art is a part of you and it will always be personal. If you stop being personal then what point of view are you bringing to the world. Your friend must not be an artist. Danita, keep doing what you're doing. You were meant to have a connection with the people who love your work and they will always appreciate the love and personalness you put into it!

Erica of Golden Egg Vintage said...

YOU said it best, "Art is very personal". :)
As it should be! If you start looking at your art as just business, then I really think it won't be nearly as beautiful or special!
Keep it up!
Erica :)

Christine Phelps said...

Oh the great debate......rich/famous or comfortable/happy? I want the comfortable/happy route. Lately I have taken some very expensive online courses by artists who are taking the I want to be rich/want to be famous and worshiped route - I have been very disappointed with the product that has been put out and feel they may be a flash in the pan. I have such a full life - an amazing family who I love to spend time with - rich by no means but comfortable - I have been battling leukemia for almost three years and I have learned a lot! I was terminated from my position as a graphic designer at a publishing company because I have cancer and I did some major soul searching - I have reconnected with what makes me truly happy - my talent, my art myself and positivity. I have filled my sketchbooks with sketches just waiting to come to life!!! And slowly I am working at it. We all have opinions on running a business/creating and what we want out of it - I do disagree with not taking your art personal - it is who your are - it is what makes your soul sing - for a piece not to sell - does not mean it is a failure - it means that it is there to push you further, to teach you something - maybe it is not complete yet - more work needs to be done and once you push it further it could open you up to the next best line of work! I find so much joy in your work, people do as well and I just think you need to figure out where you want to be. But wharever you do don't be anybody but your true self! Remember Art makes life Magic! xxxxx Christine

Christine Phelps said...

Oh the great debate......rich/famous or comfortable/happy? I want the comfortable/happy route. Lately I have taken some very expensive online courses by artists who are taking the I want to be rich/want to be famous and worshiped route - I have been very disappointed with the product that has been put out and feel they may be a flash in the pan. I have such a full life - an amazing family who I love to spend time with - rich by no means but comfortable - I have been battling leukemia for almost three years and I have learned a lot! I was terminated from my position as a graphic designer at a publishing company because I have cancer and I did some major soul searching - I have reconnected with what makes me truly happy - my talent, my art myself and positivity. I have filled my sketchbooks with sketches just waiting to come to life!!! And slowly I am working at it. We all have opinions on running a business/creating and what we want out of it - I do disagree with not taking your art personal - it is who your are - it is what makes your soul sing - for a piece not to sell - does not mean it is a failure - it means that it is there to push you further, to teach you something - maybe it is not complete yet - more work needs to be done and once you push it further it could open you up to the next best line of work! I find so much joy in your work, people do as well and I just think you need to figure out where you want to be. But wharever you do don't be anybody but your true self! Remember Art makes life Magic! xxxxx Christine

Jazzysofia said...

I think there are several kinds of people. You're an artist who makes beautifull work. I'm lucky with two pieces of them in my home. Most artist are poor salespeople. By far not all of them can make a living from their art.
For a salesperson is ofcourse the merchandise not personal. Then they would never be succesfull in selling enough to make a living. Often their goal is selling as much as possible. Your goal is making good art and give people an emotional experience with it. It is a pitty you experience a lot of unpleasent emotions with it as well. But no one ever experiences only joy about there work. And yes, I think you can protect yourself a bit against negative thoughts. If you focus on what you don't sell, you might forget how many people appreciate your work. I think it makes you human and beautiful to share your uncertainties with us. But I love even more that you share your art with us.

Silvia LGD (Little Green Doll) said...

I understand how you feel... art is something personal :)

Julie Ryder said...

I totally get where you are coming from! I am a mixed media artist and each and every piece of my work is something new and exciting and the joy I feel if it sells is amazing! Its not so much the money (although that is very nice to receive!!) but the feeling that someone likes it enough to pay their hard earn money to buy to either have it in their home/office and look at it every day or to give it to someone else because they feel that person would love it also. Its when it isn't personal is when you have to reassess what your art means. Making art isn't just like any business - its your heart and soul….:)

Jetta's Nest said...

Staying true to yourself and your own belief's is the most important thing of all. It's what makes your art yours and special and it's what people love about it. Keep doing what you do and feeling how you feel and don't worry about what anyone else thinks! - Sam

Janet Dunstan said...

I love your work and the only reasons I haven't bought any is because I can't decide what or I don't have enough money! I just saw your cushions and tote bags on society6 and I am saving to get something as long as I can decide which ones! Your work has such a lovely feel and look to it. Xxx

mutblue said...

I can understand why you feel like that. I expect I might feel the same and struggle terribly with it. But I dont have your talent. I wish I could make such beautiful things but I cant. When I can afford it I buy yours. But your talent is always there, whether or not our budgets are.

Your art is warm and beautiful and the fact you put your heart into it is part of what makes it so special.

But this nebulous audience doesnt deserve to judge you or make you doubt yourself - with our purchases or otherwise. Your work is beautiful regardless.

An ex of mine once said to me "have you heard of the stoned prophets?" Many people and things of importance have gone unrecognised in their lifetimes. Doesnt mean they weren't important or right or perfect.

x

mutblue said...

I can understand why you feel like that. I expect I might feel the same and struggle terribly with it. But I dont have your talent. I wish I could make such beautiful things but I cant. When I can afford it I buy yours. But your talent is always there, whether or not our budgets are.

Your art is warm and beautiful and the fact you put your heart into it is part of what makes it so special.

But this nebulous audience doesnt deserve to judge you or make you doubt yourself - with our purchases or otherwise. Your work is beautiful regardless.

An ex of mine once said to me "have you heard of the stoned prophets?" Many people and things of importance have gone unrecognised in their lifetimes. Doesnt mean they weren't important or right or perfect.

x

Little Brown Rabbit said...

I believe people buy your joy! If you stopped putting your heart & soul into your work people would start to notice & maybe actually stop buying.

I don't believe that artists can just switch off & put a business head on, in the same way as someone selling food for example.

If something doesn't sell of mine I just decide that the right person hasn't come along yet- after all if I love it then someone else out there will too- don't you think? The problem is that person hasn't found it yet & maybe never will. But as long as I like it & it makes me happy- then that's OK :)

You're perfectly normal Danita! I don't think any artist out there has ever not had the same emotions as you at some point!

xx

Little Brown Rabbit said...

I believe people buy your joy! If you stopped putting your heart & soul into your work people would start to notice & maybe actually stop buying.

I don't believe that artists can just switch off & put a business head on, in the same way as someone selling food for example.

If something doesn't sell of mine I just decide that the right person hasn't come along yet- after all if I love it then someone else out there will too- don't you think? The problem is that person hasn't found it yet & maybe never will. But as long as I like it & it makes me happy- then that's OK :)

You're perfectly normal Danita! I don't think any artist out there has ever not had the same emotions as you at some point!

xx

andrea creates said...

i totally understand the way you feel.i feel attached to the things i make too and wonder why some things get ignored.
i think your work shows how dedicated and how much you love to do what you do : )
take care~

Sally Chupick said...

it wouldn't be art if you didn't take it personal, it would just be product. there is a giant chasm between the two.

Denise said...

Danita, I feel your pain. I used to do art fairs and it would hurt my heart when people looked at my goods and walked away...without even a word. Many times I see gorgeous pieces that I would love to take home with me, but I can't afford. I am getting ready to retire and will even be on more of a fixed budget. But I can still admire! I live in EP - close to you - somewhere around here. I dream of meeting you and seeing your creative space. You are an inspiration - you and each and every one of your dolls...especially the yellow one. I love yellow. She is me!
Don't lose hope. Hope is often all we have. And never, ever stop "taking it personal" for it is then that you will cease to be the artist that you are. Hugs. Blessings. :D

Stephanie Gentry said...

Each creation is your brainchild. It's natural to even give names to them, and to create personal stories for each when so much time is spent during the creation process. And, like me, you would probably breathe life into them if you could. That's how you know they are made from your heart and soul, and that makes them very special. For that reason, how can you not take it personally.

Alicia said...

Oh this post couldn't have landed on a better day for me! I make things myself and feel 100% the same. Obviously i can't say if you're right or not to feel that way, but i feel like we put such a big part of ourselves in what we're making that we have to feel that way. Otherwise, as you said, you could just make one thing and get it massproduced just for the money, but that's not how it works coz everything you make has a soul.
Whatever happens, your art should always make you feel good, you're sooo good, so keep going and don't doubt about yourself!

mystele said...

the minute what i do becomes about money or recognition, i'm done. it is ALL about heart and connection. i do what i do because i am created to do it. what people say/don't say or when something sells/doesn't sell matters, but it doesn't matter as much as the pleasure i find in the creative process. and that is indeed very personal! xo

mystele said...

the minute what i do becomes about money or recognition, i'm done. it is ALL about heart and connection. i do what i do because i am created to do it. what people say/don't say or when something sells/doesn't sell matters, but it doesn't matter as much as the pleasure i find in the creative process. and that is indeed very personal! xo

happii.lotus EatsRainbows said...

i believe you are perfect just as you are Danita <3

PeregrineBlue said...

Exactly

mandarinasdetela said...

Ciertamente has sido un referente para mi al crear, el mundo que creaste es bellísimo, y si te lo tomas personal, es obvio es algo que creaste tu y tiene mucho valor, no es lo mismo con un impreso o una reproducción.

Hay mucha gente como yo, en lugares escondidos del mundo que admiramos tu trabajo, pero no tenemos el poder adquisitivo algunas veces para comprarlo, quizás no porque sea caro, pero tenemos otras responsabilidades, tal cuál como tu lo dices... pero no es porque no sea lo suficientemente bueno... es increíble!!.

disculpa por ecribir en español, pero me es más fácil :P

bsos y mucho éxito.
Isabel.

Hi! My name is erica. Would you be my friend? said...

You sound just like me! I say don't ever change. Yes, it would be nice not to get hurt feelings or doubt, but knowing that you love what you make truly (at least for people like me :D ) makes it so much more special. I'm so glad I read this post. :) (and I love the dolls!)

Liliana said...


My written English is not very good, so I'll write in Spanish.

Taking it personal or not? Me imagino que es una lucha siempre para ti no tomarlo personal. Como persona sensible que soy te digo que si tomarlo personal te hace sufrir el doble, no lo tomes personal, es más fácil decirlo que hacerlo pero se puede engañar a la mente por decirlo de alguna manera metiendo información positiva en vez de negativa a tu mente cuando no vendes algo que has creado con todo tu amor. Si supieras lo que tu arte significa para los que lo observamos y los que lo compran, la inspiración que proporcionas con el sólo hecho de compartir una fotografía de lo que has creado, Danita, si pudieras leer nuestras mentes y corazón, no tendrías ni una mínima duda de tu talento. Cada pieza tuya es única y especial. No sufras el doble con los pensamientos negativos que van y vienen...disfruta lo que se queda en tu casa o en tus manos porque un día esa pieza de arte será un tesoro para tus hijos. Pensamientos positivos se pueden convertir en el alivio para un momento y un hábito para toda la vida, es lo que pienso yo, alguien que a veces sufre el doble, he tenido que aprender que no todo se debe tomar personal, nos llaman sensibles. Así que para mí funcionan los pensamientos positivos, pueden haber pocas o muchas razones porque las que vendes o no vendes y no tiene que ver con que tu arte no es suficientemente bueno. Grábalo en tu cabecita.

By the way...mi color favorito de niña es el amarillo, aunque de adulta no lo es, siempre busco cosas con el color amarillo porque me recuerda la niña que llevo por dentro. Si tienes alguna pieza de arte que hayas creado y que tenga mucho amarillo me gustaría traerla a mi casa...

Love,
Liliana

Patsy Paterno said...

We are all unique, and each of your art is unique too. There is someone out there who will love each and every one, even if it is yellow. Just be patient knowing it is meant for someone special. You wouldn't want everything to sell right away, would you, knowing that it might not be so appreciated? Patsy from
HeARTworks

Alisa Steady said...

Danita, what you (we have as artists) is *passion*. Passion is what drives the desire to create pieces infused with love, and rejoice when that piece finds a forever home. Everyone feels differently depending on their business, but artists - we can't help but *be* passionate about our work and our customers because that's how we're wired. If the passion goes, so do we. xoxo

dinaremistudios.com said...

I accidentally posted my comment to your email! EEEK so sorry! I just wanted to say...YES, someone has finally voiced openly what I feel and many artists feel about their craft. Art is so personal and each piece carries a little bit of you with it. I find myself allowing it to take root and I will even stop creating for weeks at a time. This post was inspiring and will encourage me to keep going! I love your work Danita! You inspire many artists like myself! Thank you.

Марьяна Волкова said...

Love your dolls!