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April 26, 2020

Quieting My Whisper

Being an artist is both a blessing and a challenge.

I’ve always been a fan of creativity and design. I’ve been more than a fan. When I see things that speak to my heart, I stop and stare. I run my fingers over intentionally layered papers that create playful characters or flowers. Patterns? They stop me in my tracks every single time. A piece of furniture that has both form and function makes me swoon. Colors, oh how I love colors, but not just on their own; a color when paired with a partner that brings out the best in both takes my breath away. Design and creativity are all around, and I marvel in the beauty that inspires a sometimes otherwise gray day.

Days when life is so busy and I feel myself internally racing a million miles an hour, but then something catches my eye. It shouldn’t because I just don’t have time for a distraction, but it’s a distraction that instantly calms me. I’ve seen it every day for a while now, but at this moment of crazy, it centers me.

It’s a favorite coffee mug of mine with a delicately painted gold handle. The deers in colors of reds and blues with intrinsically placed dancing flower vines softens my overly focused and determined brow. Then my eyes wander to artwork hanging on the fridge that is hand-drawn, painted, and crafted by my two children. It all makes me smile. Joy has now reclaimed its rightful spot in my heart that just moments earlier was exploding with to-do’s, errands, and deadlines.

So why is being an artist both a blessing and a challenge?

A blessing because I appreciate it all. I appreciate all of the art, designs, and creativity that I see – even with which doesn’t personally resonate. I appreciate the time and the talent. Even more so, I understand the effort it takes to put yourself out there as an artist for others to critique and offer comments. Comments that can sometimes hit hard if the meaning didn’t translate as intended or overheard whispers of “how hard was that?”

And there lies the challenge.

My whisper. One that isn’t always kind or supportive. A quiet voice that has stopped me dedicating time to my craft. A whisper that has planted the notion I’m better to appreciate art than to make art. One that has created doubt in my talent and my ability to create something that others will love. A whisper that at times has grown so loud it has drowned out the sound of why I create.

For me. For my inner child and my self-expression. To share messages that I value and deem important.

But then I remind myself that a whisper can be quieted with a calmer, more confident voice.

Finding confidence comes from showing up, doing the work, and honoring the challenges. Confidence never comes from comparison. It never comes from listening to others, and it never happens when I don’t create.

I’m sure the whisper will never completely go away. And neither will my persistence in quieting it.

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Kimberly Wyman  |  Contribution: 2,000