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Sunday, June 16, 2013

Deconstructika's Race to Sales

Tonight at 7 PM CTA my sale will start. This dress- normally $800- will be marked down to $150. There are lots of other great items too, read details below.

I am having a giant clearance sale from my Etsy shop in order to make money to order fabric for my fall line. I want to get rid of at least 50% of my inventory in 3 days! In order to do this I am putting things on extreme discount. 60%-75% off all clothing, including couture masterpieces like the Snow White dress. This will be a great time to get some new summer clothing, buy gifts, or for models & photographers, to get some new items for shoots.

Here's how it will work:
I will be spending Sunday (today) during the day marking down all my prices and will have my shop deactivated all day, and then at 7:00 PM CTA I will re-open with insanely low prices. To make this easier for you, I posted a photo album on facebook with the sale prices so you can scope out what items you want to grab up. Sale Price preview album
It will be first-come, first serve, there is no reserving items, you must buy them at the sale. On Etsy you can pay with a credit card or Paypal. If you live in Northwest Arkansas and the shipping seems high for you, send me a message and I will either give you a coupon for free shipping or I can refund that after the sale.
Thanks to everyone who continues to support my business! I am so lucky to have such supportive people around me who are helping me to achieve my dreams.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

What it means to me to be an artist.

There are two parts of my personality which are constantly at odds and yet both seem to be irrepressible parts of my character. The first part is being incredibly sensitive. Or over-sensitive might be the word. I get my feelings hurt very easily, and when I perceive I am disliked, or even the mildest criticism, I tend to sort of roll up like a little porcupine and put my spikes out. Protect that tender heart. But I think my sensitivity and emotional nature is also part of what makes me a good artist.

The second part of my personality, which sometimes seems very contradictory to the first, is this: I have an overwhelming desire to share myself with the world. By myself I mean my art, my feelings, my dreams- and in this age of sharing being a click away, it's so easy to do that in many different forums. The sharing part is easy for me. I want to inspire people and make them feel the emotions I am feeling, in beautiful, poetic forms. I want to connect with others on an emotional and spiritual level. And I hope that by doing so I will spread some love in the world, or at least, sensitivity- a heightened perception of life, or an appreciation of beauty and emotion.

This explains why I love making treasuries on Etsy so much. It's an accessible and easily assembled art form to convey an emotion or story to people. I can make a treasury in 20 minutes (ok, or an hour for the involved ones), and immediately get feedback on it from other Etsy users who are mostly artists or at least art enthusiasts. Few things feel better to me than making the perfect treasury and having people appreciate it and get my message. Not many art forms receive immediate feedback this way which is why treasury-making is so gratifying for my artist soul.

But.... I get my feelings hurt a lot. I find myself wondering why I keep sharing my vulnerable side when I have been hurt so many times. Many times I have sat at my computer in tears because I felt like nobody understood my art. Usually it's about an actual physical piece of art- a garment I am sharing photos of, or a bit of writing here on my blog. Yesterday for the first time, I actually cried about a treasury. I felt so silly. I felt like it shouldn't be that important to me, I couldn't believe it made me cry.

I was crushed by a single comment, "unique", left on a treasury I made. You know what, if you can't think of a better comment than a one-word answer like "unique", just don't bother at all! Lots of cool things are unique but usually that word is used in combination with others like "beautiful" or "meaningful", which give "unique" a friendlier flavor. But "unique" all by itself.... ouch! Worth crying over? Hardly! But that's how sensitive I am.

I'll get hurt like this and swear to myself, I am never sharing anything again! And then here I am the next day, delving in once more. Why is it so important to me to bare my soul to the world? Why can't I contain myself? It seems like no matter how often I get hurt, as soon as I recover I am eager to try again.

I am trying to find words to describe the physical feeling of it.... the closest I can come- it's as if my chest is a birdcage, with my heart beating inside, right there for everyone to see, and sometimes people even take a stab at it. And I could cover the cage, plate it with steel, turn myself off to everyone. But that's just not me. I feel like my vulnerability is such an integral part of my character, if I closed off that part of myself I would be lying to myself. Not only that, but I would rather take the risk of being hurt, to possibly inspire or connect with someone, than to close off my heart and never even give it a chance to be understood.

Art is like your child... you create it from the deepest parts of yourself, this tender creation, and then you put it out into the world and hope it can stand on it's own, and then take it very personally when it is misunderstood or mocked. It's a part of you after all... a tiny reflection of oneself. Just like a child, you hope it will grow in the hearts of others and be loved. You hope it will take on a life of its own. Sometimes it does, and the feeling of fulfillment that comes from that is so incredibly deep and spiritual, so heartfelt and warm, that it makes up for all the times you were misunderstood.

That's why we artists keep on trying... because if you reach even one person and have that moment of mutual love and understanding, it makes all the pain of the other times worth it, and it even makes you appreciate those painful times as things of beauty, like sharp crystals that you know will prick your finger but you can't stop yourself from touching them. There is beauty in all of life, and the painful things make us appreciate love even more.