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Add Value or Else

So to do blog posts everyday, I realise not every single one can be, or will be deep, some may read like diary entries (whiny, angry, or deliriously happy), some may read like a philosopher (well I would like to think so), and others will be plain ol' trash. Open up wide.


That's ok though, one thing my art practise has taught me this year, is that I make a lot of "trash", so that I can finally do one singular thing that is mildly awesome. Making trash has become integral to my process.

Todays "trash"


I really struggled today with the idea of "adding value". In my previous life, I was very keen and intent on adding value. It was easy to do, the rules were mostly straight, and I had measures. It is allegedly undeniably valuable when you do anything in excel *smirks in VBA*. In fact people even marvel at you, and say "That Tamara, she sure is (insert general praise here). So naturally in my art practise, every single outer action I do is peppered with the question "How are you adding value?", and now, it is serving to hold me back. I feel sabotaged by this ideology: "How is this adding value"...in fact I am just now seeing how rooted in Capitalism it is too.


See my work is NOT adding value, not to other humans, not really. I don't mean that in a self-depreciating way, I just mean: I don't believe someone views some sinister character I've painted, and crawls into bed, and whispers to their partner...."You know that Tamara, she sure is (insert amazing compliment here)". What I do believe is that someone could find value in something I have done, but it is not a most-definitely-finds-value kind of situation. Plus it may not just be from viewing what I have made, they could find value in me being; courageous or brave or crazy. Plot twist: I do not do those things out of the constant pressure of "add some value"...


Those things are done for me.



So maybe this is where I have the entire value proposition thing mixed up, maybe the only person I need to add value to, is myself. Now I don't mean that in the skin all zebras and wear them as jackets way (leave our Zebra's alone!). I mean that in the; it's totally ok to make a video just showing me painting because it helps me learn how to edit! It is okay to post a piece of art and not feel like I need to qualify it, explain it, or anything else to add value to the viewer, because the value lies in me just being a part of a social network.


So yeah, that's the idea still swirling around in my head today. Which is immensely freeing too. Yeah I still do want to add value, I do want someone to see my shit, and say "Yeah, that speaks to me", but I can only create said shit, when I am my own audience...and even then, it is just shit.


So here is to me adding value to my own life, and totally creating

with no purpose except to service myself *wink*


Tamka OUT!


PS: I am taking part in a daily blogging challenge run by Effy Wild - check it out here


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Michele Skinner
Michele Skinner
02 Eyl 2021

you just being on this sphere adds value. and if art only adds value to your own life and well-being, well, that's still good, right?

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Şu kişiye cevap veriliyor:

Hi Michele! Yeah, I think that should be my main takeaway - my art, my work adds value to me, and that is enough! Thank you for your kind words :)

Beğen

You know, this "added value" concept is something that kept me from doing and sharing art for a long time. Because I thought that art HAS TO add value to people's life and lost myself in this.

I'm glad that you create for the sake of your own "added value". It's essential ;)

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I know it's obviously untrue, but sometimes, it feels like only I "suffer" from certain narratives in my head...but when another creative says it, it makes me feel, less alone. I am glad you got past it too 😊

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I am struggling with this concept of "adding value" right now, as my job is wanting me to switch to full time work (instead of my usual 20 hours). The *only* bright spot in this transition is that at least I'd be bringing in more money, but everything else about it makes me feel panicked. When will I do the things that add value to my soul??? I like that you have made peace with knowing you have value no matter what.

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Şu kişiye cevap veriliyor:

Hi Amy, that is a difficult position to be in! I hope you get the clarity you need. If what I say resonates (cause I have been in this situation you describe); When I was asked to work at the expense of my soul, I became valuable to my company - but lost my way inside, outside, all around. In fact I am still recovering from all the damage I caused myself - as 1 more year became 3. However you are not me, and you may understand your boundaries and purpose better, and the option to say "nope not for me" does still exist (though for some it's easier to say). If you would like to chat more, please…


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