Today, I’ve been working on a proposal for a potential opportunity over the summer. I don’t feel I’m any good at writing proposals for my work. I always feel like I’m either underselling or overselling myself. I know a lot of this is down to confidence (or lack of it).
It is always difficult to explain to non-artists how the need to continuously promote your work, your ideas, and ultimately yourself can be so emotionally draining. The response from non-artists is often one of disbelief and behind their eyes you can see an opinionated stereotype forming of some workshy arty type who has no mental stamina and can’t relate to the ‘real’ world.
I always explain that proposal writing, exhibition applications, and networking with other artists is like one huge never-ending job interview. I’m constantly trying to market a product to people I’m not sure want it, or even need it; and there’s little/no guaranteed financial reward. Of course I’m also spending the rest of my waking hours trying to create such products. Is it any wonder my confidence is always in doubt?
So why do I do this? I must be mental. It’s like I have an itch that I constantly want to scratch, a discovery I feel is mine to make, a part of myself that I need to investigate…
“Why do you want to climb Mount Everest?”
“Because it’s there” – George Mallory