To be an artist

To be an artist is to live suspended above the abyss between recognition and artistic value, never quite knowing whether your art will land on either bank, or straddle both, or be swallowed by the fathomless pit of obscurity. We never know how our work stirs another mind or touches another heart, how it tenons into the mortise of the world. We never know who will discover it in a year or a generation or a century and be salved by it, saved by it.

— Elizabeth Barrett Browning

(Emphasis mine) Stolen from one of the thousands of gems from Brain Pickings’ site. This one goes by the title: Astrophysicist and Author Janna Levin Reads “Berryman” by W.S. Merwin: Some of the Finest and Most Soul-Salving Advice on How to Stay Sane as an Artist

Read the darn post if you want to be inspired and go in-depth on the life and legacy of W.S. Merwin.

But this isn’t just about being an artist. It’s so much more because the struggles of an entrepreneur or even a high-performer employee working for someone else are the same as that of an artist.

We don’t let anyone else define our standards nor do we lower our standards due to our own insecurities, hopelessness or the lack of appreciation. Our highest duty is towards the art and the true fans who would follow and support whatever you put out. Even if it’s garbage, to you. And it is for them that you keep showing up and work on your art. No matter what.

The struggle’s real but how we respond to it defines you as an artist.

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