The tiny thing that keeps me subscribed to this no-longer-needed newsletter….
(4 minute read)
“Success is not final.
Failure is not fatal.
It is the courage to continue
We lost our beloved dog Tuck in 2019, about an attack of pancreatitis that resulted in diabetes, which led to other complications, and ended with that sad truth: All dog stories begin with laughter, and end with tears.
He was our first dog, and I learned so much about our human history with these beloved companions. Turns out they been with us a looooong time. The love we feel for them (and them for us!) is a partnership that follows us even into the darkest places.
I had to find affordable syringes for his insulin shots, and finally ordered hundreds from AvaCare Medical. But Tuck died before we used them all, and I still get the newsletters from this company.
I could unsubscribe, of course. Every time they land in my mailbox (about once a week), they rekindle some sad memories.
But I don’t.
Because of a tiny thing that I might have overlooked, if I hadn’t noticed it last year.
Every newsletter contains what they call a “Candid Quote of the Week.” And I absolutely love them!
They always carry a hopeful message, one of kindness, insight, encouragement. Last week’s was “Every day may not be good. But there is something good in every day.” (No accreditation in that one! But it rings true, for me.)
The quote above, from Winston Churchill? That one arrived today.
And like a horoscope, I can find some truth/alignment/insight/inspiration, if I want to look for it. (I usually do!)
So a newsletter I get because of a one-time purchase for Tuck’s diabetes, is still a treasure. A newsletter with a reminder that our time with our beloved pets is never long enough, still brings me hope. A newsletter from a company I sincerely hope I never have to purchase from again, is something I stop and check out every week, without fail.
If a company specializing in syringes and wheelchairs is so meaningful to me, during these strange times, how powerful can our newsletters be, to our audience, our followers, our collectors?
I know for a fact that we artists sometimes lose track of what our place in the world is.
We despair when sales drop, or are slow to come. We are frustrated when our work isn’t accepted in that exhibition, or that prestigious gallery. We may envy the success of others, wondering what we are doing wrong. We may doubt the value of the work we do, and wonder if all our effort is even worth it.
It’s easy for me to say, “YOU MATTER, dang it!” But where’s the proof??
The first proof is that our work should matter to us. Yes, there may be a delicate balance between making what sells, and making what brings us joy. If you make a living from your art, you know first-hand the struggle there. (If there’s no ‘struggle’, good on you! You’ve found the perfect balance! And if you’ve found it, you give hope that the rest of us can, too.)
The second proof is when we share it with the world. This can be through sales, of course, and those used to happen through gallery representation, and our open studio events.
In our lifetime, and during these trying times, we can even leap over these often-constructed/restricted venues, with the help of social media marketing: Through our email newsletters, our Facebook biz page, our Instagram accounts, on Twitter, even LinkedIn. It’s free, it’s easy, it’s generous, it’s effective.
If one person’s heart is lifted because I share, that’s good enough for me. When one person lets me know they love my work, or my words helped them through a hard day, I feel it’s worth it.
I’m grateful for this skill, the ability to tell my story through my artwork. I’m grateful it’s easier than ever to share it online. I’m grateful I get to curate my own work: What will I share today? An idea? A work-in-progress? My latest finished work? My workspace? A solution to something that was holding me back? A resource for other creatives?
All of these can be welcomed, appreciated, enjoyed by others.
And it all is built on my artwork, which healed me, which gives me a voice in the world, which is so out-of-the-box (literally!) no one ever knows what “category” to put me in.
From prehistoric times, art/music/healing/teaching has been a powerful way to create community, and to celebrate the individual.
That is exactly what creative work does, and why it’s such a powerful force for good in the world.
This made me realize I should write back to AvaCare Medical today, and let them know that they matter. I’ll tell them that their little quotes, focused on us feeling better, doing better, having hope, have lifted my heart.
And I hope this newsletter does the same, for you!
Your comments are always welcome, often insightful, and sometimes inspirational, too! Shares, the same. You can find more of my articles at Fine Art Views, and/or visit/subscribe to them through my blog.