*Determined to Suck is my experiment in letting myself create and display art that is not perfect in an attempt to loosen the bonds of my perfectionist nature that has plagued me since childhood and rears its ugly head in my performing career. I chose painting with watercolors because it’s cheaper than a lot of things, I love color, and my husband has a lot of art supplies.
Not so secret about me: I’m a tarot reading, intention casting, meditating, sage burning hippie. Fuck it. I’m one of those. And nearly every day in the morning before I do my altar work, or in the evening as I go to bed I ask my cards (as a way to get to know them) what my card was for the day (or what my guides want to advise me of). I cast my card later in the day to see if my card reflected my mood, and I got a major arcana card- The Moon (XVIII)
I’ve spent most of my day moody and deep in thought. For much of it I’ve kind of gone kicking and screaming into my activities only to find that in doing them they were somehow helpful to my mood. So I’ve mostly just been plowing through my day this way. This painting was approached very much the same- I didn’t want to paint- but it turned out to be the most time I’ve spent so far on a piece. I ended up truly enjoying myself.
About the moon: The Moon is the card of intuition, dreams and the unconscious. The Moon provides light as a reflection of the Sun, yet this light is dim, uncertain, and only vaguely illuminates our path as we journey toward higher consciousness. The pool at the base of the card represents the subconscious mind and the crayfish that crawls out of the pool symbolises the early stages of consciousness unfolding. This creature also represents the often disturbing images that appear from our inner depths, just as the dog and wolf at the beginning of the path represent the tamed and the wild aspects of our minds. The path leads between two towers into the mountains in the distance, showing the way to the unconsciousness. The astrological sign associated with this card is Pisces – psychic, receptive and mysterious. http://www.biddytarot.com/tarot-card-meanings/major-arcana/moon/
The uncertainty I feel in being creative is certainly something we all experience. Even as I grabbed paint from each pot I thought- is it too much? will it be too saturated? Can I fix it? Fuuuuuuuck. In creating my new act and piecing together all the elements, waiting on costume pieces, mind-mapping my just-budding choreography- the uncertainty is real. But I feel thankful to have a place to experience it as I put it all together.
Most of us are all so uncertain. Even the ones that come out as narcissistic-in fact I think they may have it worse. Last night at my gig I had an encounter with a man who wanted to tell me who his “favorites” were. And they didn’t include me. After politely and promptly shutting him down (and then imagining all the other amazingly burning and hilarious ways I could have done it) I think now today that this poor sucker was just so damn uncertain in how to talk to us. Poor thing! What I am proud of is that I didn’t think “well I want to be your favorite!”, instead I was like “too bad so sad you have to designate women to the status of things to be ranked and then expounded upon”. I know- I was deep last night y’all.
And then I thought of the performers who love to announce that an audience member called them their “favorite” – Oh believe me that shit happens, and I’m still shaking my head- and in my more compassionate moments I recognize how uncertain they are. They need that validation and to impress upon others that they are the best in order to make it from moment to the next. Sometimes in my darker moments I wonder how close in my moments of ultra-perfectionism and insecurity did I get close to pulling that shit on my stripping sisters in a dressing room. I hope not too close.
Sometimes it’s the uncertainty that makes you go out on stage, or makes you try something new. This is the type of uncertainty I’m determined to work with. I’m also determined to be okay resting inside uncertainty while I suck at painting, and hopefully my new comfort can sneak out and join me in other creative endeavors. But for now- here’s the Moon:
Sit cozy inside of uncertainty and mystery today. She might hug you.