On day #1 of The Artist Way course, I made a tremendous discovery about myself. It’s important for my process that I share along the way.
WHY has my whole life been about music and art? Why have all my friend’s been musicians and artists? Why didn’t my job of selling t-shirts for my favourite band’s fulfil me? Why didn’t my dream career as an MTV host fulfill me? How have I landed in an entirely new reality, to find myself again, being surrounded by musicians and artists… Why is this MY passion, yet I am not pursuing it? WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME?
I have been, a Shadow Artist.
“Artists themselves but ignorant of their true identity, shadow artists are found shadowing declared artists. Unable to recognize that they themselves may possess the creativity they so admire. They often date or marry people who actively pursue the art career they themselves secretly long for. Artists love other artists. Shadow artists are gravitating to their rightful tribe but cannot yet claim their birthright. Very often audacity, not talent, makes one person an artist and another a shadow artist-hiding in the shadows, afraid to step out and expose the dream to the light, fearful that it will disintegrate to the touch. Shadow artists often choose shadow careers - those close to the desired art, even parallel to it, but not the art itself.” - Julia Cameron, The Artist's Way.
When I was a little girl, my dream was to be a singer / performer on stage, but my dragon repeatedly asked “What if nobody likes me?” in my head. I changed my dream to being an MTV host, where everyday I would be surrounded by, affiliated with, the people living my real dreams. I got the job, it wasn’t enough. The dissonance became too much for me, I quit the job and went on a deep journey to find out “Who am I?”
After years of focussed self development work, including, facing and taming my dragons, I made the choice, I know who I am.
“In order to move from the realm of shadows into the light of creativity, shadow artists must learn to take themselves seriously. With gentle, deliberate effort, they must nurture their artists child. Creativity is play, but for shadow artists, learning to allow themselves to play is hard work.”
Today for my Artist Date, a time to PLAY, I decided to take my 20 year old self, back to my darkest years, when dancing to hardcore screaming emo music was my therapy. I became a fanatic with these band, getting them tattooed on me, following them around and eventually working for them. Today, as younger Phoebe and I throw down like old times, dancing and shaking our stuck emotions away, I hear, that Alexisonfire had been trying to tell me something “you say that you’re in control, you say that you are. I can’t think of a time, when you looked less alive. Just wait until light, my dear, just wait until light. One more day will go by, maybe today you should try. Look past the mirror and find, that there’s something inside, something more to your life. My words won’t heal you now, it is you who decides.”
Yes, yes it is.
So, this is me exposing my dream to the light, and vowing to takes baby steps towards living the musical and artistic life, that I have always dreamed, but have never dared to.