Finding your own voice……..

In search of my style……..

Oh what a tangled web we weave!

I have not been idle during this long absence . In fact I have had several shows…………some of which were very successful in regards to sales. However I have been struggling with that same old question again!

Is this my true voice?

I have a few people I can call upon when times like these strike me. They are honest and sincere and know me and my art well.

Here’s the problem……………as you know, textile work is slow and time demanding…..so being ready to respond to CFE’s is quite the challenge. Either you have something already completed that fits perfectly into the exhibition’s narrative or you have to ‘scramble’ to produce something in the timeline to enter the call. This latter scenario often leads to one entering work that isn’t really true to your inner voice or even up to your standards.

I keep telling myself to not let this happen and to work ahead with nothing in mind than to enjoy what I am creating. But I am still struggling with this and (I feel) still not creating what is truly in my soul.

So I took this last year to search my inner self and question what it is that I love to do………..what really excites me……….what would I do if I had a solo show in which I could choose my subject matter and not have to adhere to a narrative set by a gallery. What techniques would I use? Would I still be focused in textiles? I have found ‘some’ answers and have been creating some very different work for me, although my ‘style’ is still visible through it all. It is a slow process but a very rewarding one. I’m not ready to expose my efforts to the world yet………..still working out the details……….but I am excited to be on this path to my inner voice.

I am interested to know if others have these struggles and do they ever get resolved?………..I would love to hear what others are struggling with……

6 thoughts on “Finding your own voice……..

  1. I am going through the same thing right now. I just had a small show that was my own, but I ended up feeling rushed and like not all the work was up to my quality standards. I was happy with the show once it was hung up, but didn’t feel that it was quite my voice, either. Ironically, the pieces that sold were the more generic pieces, not the pieces where I put myself out more.
    Now I’m trying to figure out whether or not I should make another body of work and hope I can find a show to exhibit it in or if I should just answer calls. You are so right about how time consuming textile art can be. How much time do I want to spend creating a body of work that might just stay in my home? Textile supplies are often expensive, too. I do want to create, I am willing to be vulnerable and show my art regardless of whether or not it’s popular, but my time is also valuable.
    One avenue I’m exploring is doing a group show with other artists so I’m not having to kill myself filling up a whole room. I’m thinking I prefer making a few items that are very well made and unique,rather than producing large amounts.
    Thank you so much for sharing your experiences! Talking with other artists helps tremendously!

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    • So nice to hear from you Tabitha………seems a lot of us are thinking the same thing! I do a lot of group shows as well but do not find this as rewarding as a solo show……..much less work and stress, however, as you point out………..we just have to keep figuring it out as we go along I guess. So nice to hear from you and to share our problems! Anni

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  2. Hi Anni,
    I go through the very same. While there’s nothing like a looming deadline to make you focus, I sometimes feel like I dont entirely relate to some of the work that I create under pressure. But then without the deadline I can get a bit lazy😑 I suppose its about finding the balance between the two – it hasn’t happened yet, but I can always hope…..
    Love your work 😊
    Janet

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  3. Anni, this is the biggest problem of what we try to do. I will be interested to follow where YOU are going as everything you create is so beautiful.

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    • Thank you Bonnie for your kind words……….I think you and I agree that we all strive for meaning in our work as well as beauty and fine craftsmanship………..balancing the two is a tricky tightrope:))

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