Call yourself an artist?

Picture this. I am exhibiting at the weekend. My mosaic art is on display as part of the annual “Artsists Open House”. The sun is pouring in, catching the edges of tiles and glass, making it gleam.

My daughter, Isabella, comes for a visit. After a while of hanging around, she takes a piece of paper and pencil and starts drawing.

Minutes later,  I see her confidently sticking her picture on a blank bit of wall by my art. I look and see her own pencil-line drawing of one of my mosaics, a picture of ‘mummy’ and the following words:

“My name is Isabella. I am an artist and this is my mummy”.

Now that’s confidence for you!

I know from my own experience and discussions with other creatives, that it is often hard to say the words  “I am an artist?” Why is this?

It is as if ‘artist’ is a status which we have to be given (by whom?) rather than an inner state of being which we develop (or not).

I am firmly of the opinion that art is everywhere, that life is art (think interiors, think food, think gardens, think use of space, body, clothes, words, finger nails,  think dancing and music…).

I know, I know….back to that old ‘what is art‘ debate. But if art and creative expression is so fundamental to our humanity (which I believe it is), then to have that identity taken away from us, turned into a job tile and given over to the power of some bestowing institution or financial transaction, is like giving away a part of our soul. Or am I being a touch dramatic?

I am with Isabella.

Sit down and write

“I am an artist”

then stick it on your wall.

14 Responses to “Call yourself an artist?”

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  1. Robin Norgren says:


  2. jacqueline says:

    Dearest sweet Concetta, this is such an inspiring post! Thanks so much for sharing! Your table looks really gorgeous with all your beautiful work! And yes I am with Isabella! Have a lovely merry happy week and love to you!

  3. Ellie says:

    Love this. We all struggle with naming ourselves as artists. But thanks to you, today I proclaim "I am an artist." I feel good!!

  4. Concetta says:

    Fantastic! Thank you all 😉

  5. Alison says:

    Oh Concetta to have the confidence of your daugther! I have been doing art for the past three or so years and have only just recently started to feel confident enough to say those words! This is a beautifully written piece and I agree whole heartedly.

  6. ger chouinard says:

    LOVE this post! Thank YOU!

  7. Dana Barbieri says:

    Love that and Love Isabella. She is a genius!
    we all had that confidence too, it was just snatched away but well meaning adults. xo

  8. get stuff done says:

    aw that is lovely.

  9. Amelia says:

    love to Isabella for saying it as it is 🙂 thanks for stopping by my LETS MAKE GREAT ART POST. LOVELY to hear from you and we'll be working together soon. Whooo! ;0

  10. Carolyn says:

    Oh I hope she always has that wonderful confidence, knowing exactly who she is.
    Thank you for posting this, it is beautiful.

  11. Furrukh Riaz says:

    Hi Connie

    Love the new website and I am so so so proud of you. I still remember when you started out 7 years ago and to see where you are now is amazing! not only that but you’ve developed through community which is you completely. Love your work say Hi to Neil and the little artists. My name is Furrukh and I am an artist! (Love Isabella’s confidence)

    • Concetta says:

      Oh Furrukh, only just saw this! Thanks for your lovely encouragement. I remember the poem you wrote about my Owl all those years ago and I am SO happy to heart about all the writing you have been doing. Yes, you ARE an artist. Sending a big hug and kiss with your lovely lady. xxx

  12. Sherrie says:

    How funny!! My husband and I just had a similar conversation. We talked about our years in the Fire Service (He’s retired and Im coming up on 20 yrs) and I told him at this point I’d like to be known as an artist. He laughed and said, “yeah, like I’m a yardman” which he has been for 30 something years as well as one awesome firefighter. So we compromised, he’s the landscape artist and I get to be all the other types of artist!!

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