(i had a pretty picture of a chrysalis to add to this, but i can't get it to load, boo!)
i'm in such a state of confusion. and clarity. everything all at once.
many years ago i made the choice to become a tattoo artist. i loved every second of it. i left behind painting, and sewing, the handwork that my grandmother had just taught me; forgot everything that wasn't geared towards sharp lines and bold colors, perfect points and plastic-covered equipment.
something lately has been creating a larger and larger space between me and my tattooing. i have left it before, not sure where it was taking me, trying out my other skills such as sewing and baby making :) i have always gone back, but never with the thought that i would do this forever. the more years that pass the more it becomes a 'just for now' job. i don't think that's a good attitude for a tattoo artist. many things are transitional but tattooing takes dedication. lots of it. enough that, the only way i can see it being worth it is if i do plan on making it a life-long endeavor. i don't think it should be picked up and dropped off like an unfinished quilt that has been in the closet too long, only brought out on cold winter evenings to be worked on by a fire.
i make too many excuses.
i waiver too much.
ultimately, i don't feel like this is my path.
on the other hand, i do want to experiment. i want to learn hand-poking tattoos and spend time exploring the designs and possibilities behind that. i have friends who have unfinished work and i won't let them down.
so i don't know. i wish it were easier. i do know that the most valuable thing i've learned in the past few weeks is that just because we are drawn to something doesn't mean it's best for us. so what's best?
these are the things i want to change:
i want to swap out little fluorescent-lit rooms for big, bright, open windows.
i want to take off the gloves and get as much color on me as possible.
i want freedom from others' expectations.
i want my canvas to be unlimited in size, and my materials unlimited in variation.
i want to work and rework; i want the process to show.
i want to color outside of the lines.
i want to be rid of competition and drama. i refuse to invite it in. i want to only work together with my contemporaries, not against.
and, just as a reminder to myself, these are the things i want in the future:
i want my own shop, one shared with friends- crafting and sewing and painting and doing whatever else we can think of.
i want time with my husband and boy, and with my future children. lots of time.
i want to learn and teach the arts of my family, the hand crafting that has been so important to them over the years.
tattooing was what i needed, most of all, at the time it found me. it taught me about people, it gave me opportunities i hadn't dreamt of, it gave me confidence as an artist, it gave me friends.
but i think it's time to say, finally, that i need something different. it's time i give myself permission to explore that wholeheartedly.
as my perception of myself has shifted the past two weeks, so have my goals. i am becoming who i always wished to be. i didn't realize that i have always been that person. now it's just a matter of becoming comfortable in that skin and moving forward with ideas that i didn't think were possible.
it's easy to be who you want to be. you just have to be. the person in my mind who spends lots of time with her family outdoors, spends days in a bright studio or shop with her children doing homework or projects on a table nearby, stops at the market to pick up veggies to make a good dinner and tucks her kids in at night- that person has to start somewhere. she is starting as me, right now, in this moment.
i refuse to delay any longer.