Burning Question for the Artist... / by Jennifer Davey


As an artist, how do you decide if what you're doing is worthwhile? (and does it matter?)Excellent question and one I have pondered a lot. My first response is that I feel without question making art is worthwhile to me because it makes me happy. The other day I was in the studio and I had the feeling that I was "swimming." I was so joyous creating and exploring. That feeling's value is beyond measure to me. It certainly is not always like that in the studio, but it is more common than it used to be.
I think that art can be compared to nature as we try to assess what is valuable and what is not. When I look at a forest, I can think, what is the big deal if it is there or not. I spend all of my time in the city and the trees provide great paper, furniture, etc...things that can be produced and sold, put to use as something tangible and valuable. And yet, that forest holds much more than its parts. The most important part it holds is this sense of the wild, of awe, of things beyond comprehension of our logical mind. Art and creation nourishes that same sense of awe and expansion. It is easy to ignore or disregard this connection with the wild, with vastness, with the heart as unimportant in our modern lives, but when I take the time to nourish this creativity in myself, the rewards are invaluable.