I am not an artist

I’ve always been a creative type. I love to make things and build things. I tinker and I dabble, and I enjoy making different things with my hands. I’ve finished hundreds, probably thousands of projects.

But I’ve never considered myself an artist.

In college I taught myself to knit on colored pencils (because I was a broke college kid who couldn’t afford needles). A few years after that I taught myself to crochet and that became my true love.

But I am not an artist.

I wanted a “welcome” sign for my garden gate. I scoured the internet for ideas but didn’t find anything I liked. So I made one myself. I didn’t like any of the birdhouses I found online, so I made one myself.

But I am not an artist.

I decided I didn’t like my plain backyard. So I redesigned and completely rebuilt it-by myself, by hand, into a beautiful garden oasis.

But I am not an artist.

I sing, I dance, I even acted way back in the day (I have several VHS to prove it!)

But I am not an artist.

I write silly short stories and poems, song lyrics and, yes, even blog posts.

But I am not an artist.

I’ve (tried) painting, making jewelry, macrame, photography, cross-stitch, ceramics, calligraphy, felting, even scrimshaw.

But I am not an artist.

An artist is a painter, a sculptor, a musician, a writer. Someone who makes things that people are willing to spend hundreds of dollars in the pursuit to acquire. Artists are an “elite” group who make things far beyond my meager abilities.

…Right?

I’ve fallen into a trap we call “hobbies”. Creating things for fun, for stress relief, for simple pleasure. Looking at something created by my own hands and devaluing it as “not art” because I created it. I’ve listened to the voice in my head too many times saying it is “not good enough” or “not perfect”, therefore it is less than what others would have, could have done. I’ve passed up opportunities to try new things because I might not be able to make it look good, or as good as others. I might fail.

But these are all lies we tell ourselves.

We are all artists in our all rights. Maybe we will never be remembered like da Vinici or Michaelangelo, but fame is not what makes an artist. Creating is. And it doesn’t matter how good you are. What matters is that you tried, and that hopefully you had a good time.

YOU are an ARTIST!