Why Bother Unless It Makes You Money?

China Carnella Follow Your Heart Piece

China Carnella Trust Your Soul Piece

This is a common refrain that we, as artists, hear from relatives and well-meaning friends. I think an artist has to weigh their desire to accomplish their project more with how much angst it will entail rather than whether or not it will eventually make them some money. Because, let's face it, we make art because we love to do it.

In this vein, take, for instance, my oracle deck. Currently I am stuck. I have 55 concepts that I want to include in the deck. It will be a deck that I think will encompass pretty much every concept necessary in giving a thorough reading. It is unlike the Tarot, in that it is not so arcane. In other words, no "4 of Cups." It is more like the Le Normand deck, but instead of concrete nouns like "Birds, Bears, and Mice," it will have concept nouns like "Transformation, Lassitude, and Joy." This is pretty standard for an Oracle Deck, so nothing new here. I have also included the concepts within the Major Arcana, which many oracle decks also do. 

I find I am currently walking a fine line as to how I want, and even if I want to create this deck. Likely, it will take me a year if I do commit to it. My digital setup is such that I have an older computer and an older version of Photoshop. I also just tried to and think I may have half-accomplished putting my entire computer into the Cloud, which has also made things a bit more slow and stagnant in relation to creating digital art. Plus, I really am not a graphic artist. There is no way that I could even hope to compete with the likes of some of the more amazing graphic artists out there who are creating decks. This leaves me with painting, which I do have almost 30 years of experience with. 

I am currently pretty angst-ridden about creating this deck, so I have decided to focus more on projects that have been in the works for years, and also on items I have already created to be placed in my shop. I think I am going to take a break right now from creating the Oracle Deck in lieu of placing already-created items into my shop and getting up to speed on Pinterest and Instagram.

I created the two 3-D pieces above a year or two ago. I saw something like these on a trip to Flagstaff, AZ and thought they were so pretty and wanted to create a likeness.

My office lease is almost over, but I am just not feeling being in there, despite losing all kinds of money by not being there. The weather is nice lately, and there are no windows in it. Meanwhile, I have actual north light coming into my spare bedroom, like such, below. I can only do what I can do at this point. I cannot force myself to do something only for the money, or in order to not lose money. 

China Carnella

China Carnella

I guess what I am trying to say with this post is that, not only artists, but all kinds of people are feeling stuck lately; confused and unsure about the path forward, largely due to the pandemic and all of the problems it has created in every sector of the market and in every sector of our lives. The minutiae of daily life, and even our spouses and loved ones seem to be standing in our way of progress sometimes. But what if all of this were actually helping us and not hindering us? What if, when a spouse says something like, "Is this going to make you any money?" or "Why are you torturing yourself with this project?" it was cause for us to take a deeper look at what we actually should be doing? And, as above, the answer will always be, "Follow Your Heart," and "Trust Your Soul." We can all only do so much, and the way forward is always to follow our heart and trust our soul.

For example, as we speak, my spouse is blending up a fruit smoothie for us, but making a horrendous noise, such that I cannot concentrate. I have to laugh, because although the noise is disturbing, I have a spouse who is actually making a healthy smoothie for us to drink. This is like life. When you feel you are going through the blender, and things are loud and cacophonous, and we are lost and losing many things which appear to perhaps be gone forever, and things are changing so quickly, and others not quickly enough, we must rest assured that we will come out the other side into a clearer, healthier version of what our life is meant to be. I suppose the key to all of this is acceptance. Acceptance and the guidance of our heart.

In the meantime, I continue to do art and give it to DiaNoche Designs, as I have for the past twelve or so years, and you can see it all here:

DiaNoche Designs