The Intersection of Art and Motherhood

The Intersection of Art and Motherhood

This winter I've been thinking a lot about the realities of balancing an art career with parenthood. Maybe the winter feels more challenging because the kids are frequently sick, we've had several unexpected snow days, and of course the many school holidays.

But, I don't know what it's like to be an artist and not also a mother. I purchased my first gel plate the year after my son was born (12 years ago). And, I wasn't comfortable calling myself an artist till after I had my daughter (4 years ago). Becoming an artist and becoming a mother are journeys I will continue to travel simultaneously. 

We all have "what ifs" we sometimes ponder. I've often wondered what if I had gotten an art degree in college? What if I had started making art in my 20s? What if I hadn't had kids, would I be further along in my art career? I don't know, but I'm honestly not sure I would've become an artist at all if I had NOT had children. 

Having kids is powerful and all-consuming, turning everything in your life upside down as you adjust to a new bundle of joy. There has been plenty of joy and happiness with the addition of children to my home but also plenty of exhaustion and frustration. 

I've always had control issues and guess what becoming a parent was a big kick in the pants for dealing with that. Especially, when I left my job and became a stay-at-home parent after my daughter was born.

As I think about the motivation and inspiration for my work, I realize the importance of creative expression as a form of therapy to deal with the stresses of motherhood and life in general.

The studio is one place where I can feel in control. I can channel all the chaos or monotony from my day and build layers of colors, textures, and shapes to try and sort it all out. I'm grateful for that, the space, and my children. 

I know this season will pass, someday my kids won't need (or want) as much of my time or attention. I try to keep that in mind when I'm longing to get a little more time in my studio.

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