Writing helps me think, and lately I haven’t been able to think a whole lot. Funny, I came into Art as a way to become more deliberate and thoughtful– but I find myself thinking less, and doing more. A lot more, like the proverbial chicken with its head cut off. The act of thinking is almost luxurious…now that I’m thinking about it. These days, I have fragmented, incoherent thoughts, so I’ll formulate them into bullet points and/or a list. I might even tack on a catchy link bait title like “She Quit a Dream Job… You Won’t Believe What She Did Next!” Anyway:
- Cindy Shih, Artist. A few years ago, I cringed every time someone referred to me as “an Artist.” Honestly, I still cringe when I hear that now. I think what I should actually call myself is an “Art Worker” or “a worker who does Art,” because that would probably be more representative of what I do, but that would also mean I’ll have more to explain when people ask me what I do. People seem to be fairly satisfied with the term, “Artist,” so I just leave it at that and try not to be too irritating about it.
- I celebrated my 33rd birthday nearly two weeks ago, and the thing that struck me the most was how life continues to surprise me. I find that it’s really difficult to take yourself too seriously, when things change and often don’t always make a whole lot of sense when you think about them logically. In the past five years, I’ve scrutinized, examined and uprooted myself from every aspect of my life and turned it upside down. And somehow, it works pretty well too. Go figure.
- Remember how people say things like, “Don’t work harder… work smarter?” Well, apparently that shit doesn’t work (at all) with Art. Art is humbling, because there are simply no shortcuts. The most successful artists I know work 12-14-hr days in the studio, often to their own detriment. They are relentless bad-asses, and they put me to shame. If I had all the money and hugs to give, I would unquestionably give it to them. Because apparently, paintings don’t paint themselves, and I’m convinced it’s actually impossible to enjoy the entire process of creating any of them. To this point, I find that the better I get, the more work I have to do. I’m not sure why that is, or how that works, but that seems to be the way it goes.
- Does crazy beget crazy, or does being isolated and alone for hours at a time make you crazy? I’m still trying to figure this one out. I’m putting my bet on the latter, although I’m convinced no sane person would choose this line of work to begin with.
- To all my personal relationships: Thank you, and I’m sorry. As of this month, I will have three part-time jobs, in addition to being a full-time artist. (This also makes me bad at Math) Fortunately, these jobs are all hard earned, art-related and teach me things, but that doesn’t leave me a whole lot of time for a social life. This concerns me a bit, because my friends mean so much to me, but until I figure out how to balance teaching, hosting Art | Song, art demos, live painting, social media, shows, and commissions– I might not always be as available as I’d like to be. Call me out if you need to, but I ask for your forgiveness in advance.
That’s all for now. Thanks for listening,