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Back in the Studio--The Real Story

June 30, 2021 2 min read

Back in the Studio--The Real Story

Only by being catapulted back into the real world did I understand how immersed I was in launching my art business. I was sitting at my studio workspace every day during the Covid catastrophe, working through my list of tasks to improve my website: researching SEO (tortuous guessing what words and phrases would magically enable Google search to find me), resizing photos (large photo files for printing merchandise and small files for loading on the web), adding real life mockups, testing email responses and creating posts for social media. I buried myself in learning how to gain more Instagram followers, how to increase revenue with Facebook ads, how to market like a pro Shopify tutorials, and Skillshare classes on starting an e-commerce art business. 

My brain was on overload but I couldn’t stop. I had invested a lot of time, money and energy on my new website and I’d be damned if I wouldn’t make a success of it. Especially in a lockdown year when there are few distractions and online shopping was at an all time high. 

The pressure I was placing on myself didn’t let up. I wasn’t having as much fun building a business as I had in creating the art. But I had invested too much to stop now. I knew I still wanted an art business but something was wrong, or missing. And I didn’t know what it was.

Then without warning my husband, Steve, had a health setback in early May. Steve, my proudest cheerleader, most loyal art fan, and fun-loving partner, needed me in a way he never had before. I dropped everything.

Now seven weeks later I’m experiencing gentle twinges of desire to get back into the studio and tend to my website. Steve is recovering well from spine surgery but still needs a lot of my time and attention. The anxiety, fear and downright exhaustion clogging up my brain is starting to clear. My first real effort is this bit of writing to let my friends, fans and supporters know how we’re doing. 

In many ways the forced break from work was a godsend. I’m not sure I could have taken myself off the merry-go-round. Ironic that the artist who professes her art will bring joy was not finding much joy for herself. Balance is so easy to talk about and so difficult to embrace. But for my own sake and that of my family, I am working to find it. 

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