I participate in a craft fair tomorrow and I haven’t made a single thing for it. Between the hustle for festive business, nursing a sick child and being bunged up with a cold, it all feels like I am waaaayyyy off tangent. It’s almost Christmas, I should be wired, exhausted and happy but mostly I feel deflated.
There was a fair bit of research involved in the planning and decision to set up this business, and one article I read has stayed with me. It was a piece on how to build a successful creative business and one of the methods was to ‘copy, copy, copy!’
ViJouX is a niche business but quickly discovered that the only time I made any impact was when I created something that in someway or other conformed to trends created by someone else’s idea. That frustrates me.
Big companies with large advertising budgets set trends, and a deap seated need in society to be conformist keeps them in business. And that is great for them. But what about the little guys?
I have examined both sides of the coin and wondered if my creations were just not good enough but have you seen some of what sells out there??? No, that’s not it… Am I setting the bar too high? Expecting too much, too soon? Am I ahead of my time?
What ever happened to individuality? How did society become so drone-like that we fail to seek, recognise, appreciate or even love individuality? Can commercial success only be achieved by conforming to and riding the crests of trends? And what if like me, commercial success was not a driver?
It would be a bare-faced lie to say I do not crave commercial success.
I do, I do, I do!!
I want commercial success, not for the money, but for the pure egotistical satisfaction from the knowledge that something created by me adorns homes and is worn by millions around the world. I also need to impact the lives of unfortunate children around the world.
But at what cost?
If the last 9 months in business have taught me anything, it’s that I am not built to conform. My enthusiasm and energy have been slowly eroded by a world that is seemingly impervious to my efforts, leaving me on the fringes as I watch it consume cheap but expensive artificiality forced down its throat.
I wonder how many other people, convinced they have a great idea and niche, find themselves in the same position. Or worse still, in conscious denial of it.
Working to make an indelible mark on the expanse that is the world is no mean feat. The world pushes you and you have to push back. Sometimes you move back, at other times you remain immobile and rarely, you move forward. And then there are those times when you get blown completely off course.
For me, the end of my rope is here. Come the new year, there will be changes. When I wake up every morning, I will do what my soul wants to do. It will be fed by the creation of works that express its depth and breadth. And I will do what I do best. Like the cogs of the wheels that move the joints that move the piston, I will slowly but aggressively move forward.
My soul is my integrity and that is the only mark I can leave; to live a life full of nourishment for my soul.
And commercial success will not elude me because I choose my own path.
My soul will not allow it.