Marketing is Hard. That is All. (Whiney Artist Alert)

I go through phases where I'm angry with the audience for their desire to purchase emotional rides. I have more feelings than I need, but bottling them for sale challenges me.  I have to translate the emotions first, and then package them in some identifiable format, which is the part that's hardest for me to understand.

I understand soup.

Soup is an art form. Quality comes at base from the raw ingredients. The recipe documents the chef's labor-intensive process of finding balance between individual flavors and textures (yes, there is work in soup.)

Like any other art, the ultimate reward is finding something that is good for the artist and also for the audience. Those lucky few in the inner circle get to taste the soup and ebulliate:
OMG. This is the best soup ever. You could sell this. 
...as if selling multiples of a brilliantly-crafted work of art to people with suspect discernment is a reward in itself. Okay, fair, sometimes it is.

My taste is pretty eclectic if expensive, and I do try to create more of what I love so I can love more of it. If I can find someone who loves what I do enough to pay for it, that shared love is actually more reward than the money. Having more money actually factors into being able to create. It's a vicious cycle, and a risky one when you realise how much I like surprises. Surprises aren't really popular.

And, honestly, if people give money for something I created, and they love it for no more than 5 minutes before getting bored, their 5 minutes of happiness is my true reward. My love for what I make is more important to me than accolades, and sharing makes me happy. But.

You already know what's the worst:
We like that soup over there. Can you make us some of that? 
We want soup, but we want it to be like the soup we already know. How can we know which soup you made if you don't label it properly on the can? The system has demographics, and they know how many of which people will buy what kind of soup, so there's a contract available if you just...

Ahem.

What people want to purchase, regardless of medium, is how it makes them feel.

Comfortable.
Edgy.
Exhilarated.
Enamoured.
Mindblown.
Nostalgic.

I suppose the idea is to own feelings you can have some control in experiencing, unlike the ones our psyches use to assault us. So we want to know which emotion we're going to feel when we open the can. Is that what it is, peoples?  Tell me, so I can understand.

Sometimes the bulk of humanity makes, en masse, such heinously poor decisions that I want to gather up everything I've ever made ever and deny everyone the chance to love it. That precious 5 minutes isn't worthwhile if I allow myself to be the judge of all to which people subject themselves. WTF, society?

Here ends another day when I don't delete my whole blog; I don't email the editors begging to withdraw my submissions not because they're horrible but because the audience is, because the editors may not be judging by criteria I deem worthy; another day I don't do like my grandma did and build a spectacular bonfire out of the paintings I can't stand to look at any longer. But I get why she did it; I do. And at the end of the day it doesn't have much to do with the audience. Y'all are alright.

It's a cycle we artist-folk seem to endure sometimes.

I was the only family member who stood with her to watch her canvases burn, and in my memory we held hands without touching, watching the embers fly upward in a bitter fall wind while two-dimensional barns of oily pigment and linseed went down in flames.

I love you, Grammie. Thank you for every minute.

My Workspace at The Cue Club

Brain Health Northwest commissioned this set of illustrations to depict brain conditions that can be treated with neurofeedback.     Learn more here.

My workspace at Beanetics

Beanetics Coffee Roasters
The gem of Annandale - coffee-serious folks here, and I love them.


Cue Club Café
Come over.


MeetUp: Gödel, Escher, Bach Book Group (aka Digressions We Love) 
Here is my beloved book group. Below are two of its members.

Gödel, Escher, Bach - An Eternal Golden Braid
Buy the book.

Keeping In Touch With Your Art Collectors - RedDotBlog
Jason Horejs of Xanadu Gallery understands soup, too. I look to him for guidance in navigating these fearsome waters. 

My workspace at Angelika Theater in Mosaic District

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