Sometimes I wonder if I’m making enough new pieces of jewelry and art. After finishing my oracle cards, which was a huge undertaking, I’ve felt a little…well, anticlimactic about my artistic process and progress with the lack of a major project.
In reality, I have continued to create. I’ve made a variety of new things – cards, decorated hair clips, a few new pendants, etc. It’s been more that I’ve been making things a few at a time; it’s been very here and there.
I have a decent inventory of items I can sell. I’ve been doing fewer craft fairs this year, although have been successful with selling items to friends, family, and a few Etsy customers. Some of that is because I’m busy doing other things (e.g. oracle cards, planning my wedding, preparing to move) and part of that is because I’m a little more discerning about what kinds of events I put my energy, time and money towards.
There’s also another factor: I’m an aspiring Nia Technique dance fitness teacher. I’ve been putting some of my creativity energy towards learning routines and finding my own sense of movement. I take several classes a week, and for the next two months, I’m teaching once a week. So, I’ve been putting more time into that than into my visual art. However, I also recognize that I’ve been doing art for most of my life; it comes more easily to me. Dance…much less so. I took a few modern dance classes when I was 12 or so, but didn’t have the time or patience at the time. I took improvisational dance and dance history classes in college and took expressive moment classes for a while when I lived in San Diego. When I started Nia, it became about the body-mind-spirit connection and more. It became a regular activity I wanted to practice and improve at. I not only wanted to learn the technique, I also wanted to teach it. And learning to teach is a very intensive process.
I don’t see my Nia practice as replacing my visual art practice by any means; they definitely can exist side-by-side in my life. However, even as I write this, I’m realizing that I practice Nia regularly. I don’t currently have a consistent art practice. I see blogs that talk about sketching or making at least one thing a day. At the moment, I am not doing this. At one time, I was practicing wirewrapping on a regular basis, and my skills definitely improved dramatically. I don’t think I’m at a stagnant place with my art – but I might be at a place where things aren’t moving very quickly. And really, they don’t have to. I’ve been satisfied with the small supplemental of income I’ve earned, which mostly means some of what I create pays for itself. I also realize that I’ve felt vulnerable about the idea of getting feedback on what I can do next art-business-wise.
At some point in the relatively near future, I want to dedicate more time to it. I want to create goals for the act of creating – whether I’m doing it to create something for profit or just for myself. I want to get feedback on my Etsy shop, recommendations on what I could improve. I want to read books or take online classes about different aspects of running an art business. Ideally, I want to create enough time and space so my Nia and art can feed each other. Perhaps someday I’ll do a Nia and art workshop.
My time and attention is pretty divided right now, but perhaps once I settle into my post-wedding life, perhaps I will find more flow and ease in my visual art practice and business. It’s all a work in progress.
I apologize – I’ve been neglecting my website and business blog. Here’s some of what I’ve been doing:
Finishing my oracle cards! I just submitted an order to print the first sets of cards, which I should get in the next two weeks or so. My current plan is to start with a small number, and if there’s enough interest, I’ll get more printed. I also ordered a proof of my oracle card book. I’m planning on beginning to sell them this summer, so stay tuned!
I’m still making some jewelry. These are from a new collection I’m working on. I’m experimenting with playing with wire in an organic, free-form way and creating unique pieces that stand out.
Major Etsy update: I now have 45 items in my shop. Check out my Shop Updates for a coupon code for free shipping for the holidays!
I sent out my first e-newsletter! If you’d like to be on my mailing list, sign up here.
More of the items included in my Etsy update:
As for myself, I’m excited to see my love over this coming Thanksgiving weekend. I’ve managed to do a majority of my holiday shopping already, so I’m looking forward to cozying in…and hopefully selling a few things online!
I’m slowly easing into the rhythm of daily life after a weeklong Nia intensive training in Santa Fe. Nia, a form of dance fitness, is one of my other passions and expressive outlets. I am now a Nia White Belt, which is the first level of certification for anyone who wants to teach or wants a greater depth of understanding of the principles and practice. I am so grateful for my experience there – it was both healing and enriching. I’m also feeling really inspired, and I already see that leaking into my creative life.
I brought a few of my jewelry pieces with me to the training and ended up selling three things. I now have learned to bring more items at similar events in the future, and also to have a good stock of business cards with me at all times. One of my classmates is a successful jewelry designer and I hope to connect with her more soon.
I’ve been working on updating my website! If you have a chance, please look at it and tell me what you think. I’ve been working with a friend on online marketing and she suggested that I work on making the home page more visual. In any case, I had fun playing with the images.
I signed up for a craft fair in September, and I’ve been looking at the possibility of selling some of my pieces on consignment at local shops.
I also submitted both poetry and art for consideration for the 2017 We’Moon calendar and datebook. I’m excited for more opportunities like this – no matter what the outcome, it’s good practice and exposure.
Also, I got proofs of my oracle cards! I made the originals with pencil, pen, and watercolor two years ago as part of a project. Since then, I have digitized them in Photoshop. I’m still working on editing and rewriting the card descriptions, but hope to have them ready and available to sell at some point soon!