With my art, I have also been on a journey of self-discovery!

I have always used my art as a distraction from the real world and as a way to entertain the whimsy of my imagination. My “Wild West Virginian Cowgirl” ceramic set is inspired by old western films my grandfather used to watch while I was growing up, and also the song “Mammas Don’t Let Your Babies Grow up to Be Cowboys” by Waylon Jennings and Willie Nelson. The thought of running away to be a cowgirl in the wild west instead of dealing with my problems has sounded like a wonderful fantasy, even if it is a silly one.

With my art, I have also been on a journey of self-discovery throughout this process. Figuring out who I am and not letting myself be defined by my trauma has been very difficult, and I want my audience to go on that journey with me as they look at my art. I hope that my art can help other people realize that there is hope for the future and that things do get better, even when you feel like you have lost all hope.

When I am feeling discouraged or like my art is not being well received, I like to think about one of my favorite artists of all time, Vincent van Gogh. He lived a very strange and misunderstood life. During his career as an artist, his work was not that well received. His style was very different than what was popular, and people did not like it or buy it. Sometimes I have to remind myself that not everyone will like my work, but that does not make it bad, and that I might have to wait for people to appreciate my art, even if it is after I am dead.

Even though some days are extremely difficult for me, creating art helps to motivate me to continue to try my best. I hope that one day I can open my own ceramic art studio and sell my work. Art is a huge part of my identity, and I would love to be able to make a career out of it and be able to inspire other people with my creations.

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