A story of Picasso: experience matters

PicassoGuernicaA little story for you.

Legend has it that Pablo Picasso was sketching in the park when a bold woman approached him.

“It’s you — Picasso, the great artist! Oh, you must sketch my portrait! I insist.”

So Picasso agreed to sketch her. After studying her for a moment, he used a single pencil stroke to create her portrait. He handed the women his work of art.

“It’s perfect!” she gushed. “You managed to capture my essence with one stroke, in one moment. Thank you! How much do I owe you?”

“Five thousand dollars,” the artist replied.

“B-b-but, what?” the woman sputtered. “How could you want so much money for this picture? It only took you a second to draw it!”

To which Picasso responded, “Madame, it took me my entire life.”

Borrowed from Matt who borrowed it from Ellen Rohr that probably borrowed it from someone else.


Things to Remember When Everything Goes Wrong

My family. The 80's were a a strange time for hair.

My family. The 80’s were a strange time for hair.

On my way home from a little art show at the Madison Museum of Contemporary Art in Madison, WI last month my van quit on the interstate. Between the hotel, towing and new fuel pump it basically wiped out my show earnings. Which was also my Christmas money for the boys.

When we arrived home a day late and more than a few dollars short, the van quit again.

Apparently it wasn’t the fuel pump.

It would have been simple to have a melt down over the whole event. In reality that is life. Things happen. Then something else happens, and then something else. And over and over. What would a meltdown have achieved?

But we made a move and made the best of it.

Christmas was very lean (my partner and I didn’t exchange gifts) and we found a garage to work on it close to home. They let us leave the van there until we were able to get the money together.

One of my favorite clients at the 2013 Deep Ellum Art Fair.

One of my favorite clients at the 2013 Deep Ellum Art Fair.

However, in the last few days I started to feel a bit overwhelmed by some of the fallout. I’m going to miss one of my favorite art shows in Deep Ellum, TX because of finances. We had to buy a starter for the van, the boys had a birthday and some little nickel and dime expenses cropped up. Plus, I’m actively working to buy the house my mom left us from my siblings; the appraisal, probable home inspection and other costs are wearing out the clasp on my purse.

So as I meditated on it this article came to my attention. It really helped.

Since reading it I have tried to focus on the positive – no more shows until April, we made it home safely, we have the money to fix it – again. The van has been fantastic and this is the first money we have had to put into it. The closing is moving forward and the boys had a nice birthday (whether they know it or not). Plus we have wonderful families.

The other bit of reality, is that regardless if I had a “traditional” job, every business has the occasional cash-flow issue.

This isn’t an issue of whether or not my business is viable but whether I am willing to make the adjustments to my business to better fit the situation. We have been challenged to make some changes to my market approach in order to turn this problem into an opportunity. It is different and scary but as my partner has worked on these changes it has become obvious that there is something new and exciting happening to my business.

Most importantly, I finally have a Partner that doesn’t try to shame, humiliate or ridicule me. He stands-up for me and doesn’t believe in “his” team and “my” team. He doesn’t try to put me in the box or judge me for my beliefs or experiences. He has my back.

Plus, one of the reasons he loves me is because of my Vision. He is not jealous or afraid of me having a Vision and a life.

I’m very lucky he found me. And in truth, he tells me he is lucky I found him.

Life isn’t perfect but it is as good as we make it. 

First day with my van two years and over 20K miles ago.

First day with my van two years and over 20K miles ago.

You are valuable and worthy

I will just set this here for you: whether you know it or it or not, you are valuable, you are worthy. Even when you fail. Even when I fail.


“We do not believe in ourselves until someone reveals that deep inside us is something valuable, worth listening to, worthy of our trust, sacred to our touch.” — e.e cummings (via psych-quotes)


Food for thought


There are a lot of reasons to love street art. It is more than simply the scrawl of anarchists and bathroom stalls. Check out this fantastic article about street artists taking over a soon to be demolished building in Paris.

And if it is Paris why is so much of the work in English?