I made this reel on Instagram last week and it’s now over 3000 views. This means that over 3000 humans have heard my message. Social media is quite powerful. Maybe if I had shouted it from a rooftop I could reach that many, but probably not.
I made this reel because for or the first time in a long time I was really present to the power of art. And to ME as an artist.
For so long in my life I have felt like a fraud. A fake. For example, when I used to shoot weddings I’d be terrified that they would figure me out and realize I was tricking all of them. In reality I had no idea what I was tricking them at, but I was always scared they would find out that what I really was, was no good.
In my own healing journey I now realize that so many of us walk around feeling like a fraud. It even has a label called imposter syndrome. And really, it is simply because we were raised in a culture that told us we can’t be ourselves and we are not good enough.
So while I was in this exam room waiting for the doctor I was sitting in the chair against the wall with the art behind my head. In my state of anxiety and fear of being at a doctor’s office I realized I had no place to look except at empty blank walls or medical equipment.
I couldn’t relax. I had no place to escape to that could help me feel safe. In fact I was so stressed out that I had to move myself across the room so that I could see the one little piece of art that brought me some calm and safety. Just having it in my peripheral vision once I moved allowed me to relax and focus on what needed to happen in the short time I existed in that space with a doctor.
You see, about 10 years into my career, which started at age 19, I was burnt out on photographing people and I decided to focus on my fine nature photography. I quickly learned about art consultants and their role in placing artwork. I knew a photographer who made $10,000 on one sale to an art consultant and from that moment I was hooked.
I did research, made phone calls and connected with many of these amazing people. Soon I was placing my artwork in major hotel chains and hospitals around the country. A few years later I became sick and was unable to work. The first signs of my illness were light sensitivity and I couldn’t go out into my beloved flower fields to create artwork.
That led to a 10 year experience of illness, doctors, medical facilities and so on. During that time I saw a lot of art in medical spaces. Some of it was really good and some of it was not, but regardless it was all art and it helped me. And I was grateful.
I started to understand what it really meant to place art in healthcare settings with the art consultants. Before it it had just been a way for me to make money and grow my business, now it has become a way for me to make a difference.
And even more so, today, it’s helping me heal imposter syndrome and understand and believe that I am a real artist and I have a real vision to share with the world.
And my art matters. My art makes a difference. My art on healthcare walls brings safety and peace in the hardest of times. In the times I know all too well after having been through it myself.
So now as I reconnect with the art consultants, my mission goes beyond the sale, it becomes very personal, to save another person in fear and uncertainty. I want to help people find a moment of peace through the fear. I want them to have a pause from the anxiety. I want their eyes to land on my artwork and let them go on a journey somewhere far away from the current hell, if only for a moment, to be reminded of what is possible in a better place.
I wish I could thank all 3000 people for watching my reel and carrying on the message to the rest of the world. I hope this message reaches all the healthcare providers of the world and reminds them that their patients are human just like them, that we need moments of piece to digest what’s happening to us, that we need care and compassion and lightness to help us through, and that we need respect and appreciation for the strength we carry to be present in this moment.