Sunday, January 16, 2011

Will paint for food

What most people don’t realize is the tremendous energy and time it takes to be an artist.  It’s like working two jobs.  Unless your day job is a trust fund, in which case it’s like having one job (making art is still a respectable way to not make a living).  Or maybe you do what I did for years and work less than full time but live as a pauper.  So when your friends say, “Hey we’re going to see this band tonight.  The cover charge is only $3.”  And you’re thinking “THREE DOLLARS!  That’s 15% of the phone bill I haven’t paid!  That’s two espresso drinks! (which equals 4 hours of getting to be somewhere besides my crummy apartment).”  I’m realizing now that the artists I knew who magically didn’t have to work are the same ones with bottomless bags of money for going out.  Art making is not comfortable for those of us on the bottom edge of middle class, I guess.  We end up having to choose between having basic comfort and making art.  For most of my life, I chose art and for a lot of it, I didn’t really notice what I was missing.  In this drawing is a room I lived in.  It was a dining room, really.  On one side was my bed (a futon folded in half so it would fit), on the other side was everything you see in this drawing.  And down the middle was the path my roommate took to get from her room to the kitchen (her room had a similar path through it for me to get to the bathroom).  But I was so happy to have the luxury of not sharing a room that I drew this picture and proudly titled it “a room of one’s own.” And then I tied burlap sacks to my feet and walked 6 miles to school in the snow.

No comments:

Post a Comment