I thought I’d google “professional artist”. You know the feeling. It’s a middle of the night thing. This time it was dawn and my brain would just not stay asleep for a moment longer, even though my body craved it. I thought perhaps, with all the times I’d written “full time professional artist” in intros and short bios, and all the time I use it to answer the “what do you do?” question at parties, that some of the words may have gathered to me in Google World – sort of like that dust that sticks to a lolly when you find it under the lounge six months later.
I’m going to need to refine my search.
I didn’t find me, but I did find a whole world of professional artisting. I don’t know why I was surprised. Just because for so many people “Professional Artist” is an oxymoron. Just because there’s the same word (artist) to describe all the artists I meet. The professionals, the academics, the hobbyists, the learners, the once every now and then, the only if I’m with a teacher, the hardly ever. Just because I’ve chosen that pair of words to describe my practice, to add gravitas my story, to place me in a certain place within the artist’s pantheon. Just because every so often when I use those words there’s a very faint raising of the left eyebrow as if my listener can’t quite believe me.
“Look!” I want to say. ” Such a thing exists. WE EXIST. There are more like me out there. We exist so much that we’ve got pages of google choices. It must be the truth, it’s on the internet!” ( Maybe I won’t say that.)
And now I’m going to do that other middle of the night thing – and follow all those links and find out what other truths are out there. And I promise that I’ll go back and refine my search to perhaps “Professional artist, Lismore” and see if any of the dust of google fame has stuck after all.