This was an easy Illustration Friday topic for me because this drawing has been sitting on my table for a week. I created it to remind myself of my goals, instead of thinking of my fears in achieving them.
Bravery isn’t necessarily running into a fire to save a baby. Sometimes I think saving a baby would be a lot easier than picking up the phone and making a cold call or introducing myself to someone I should meet.
Bravery is facing and conquering what we’re actually afraid of, and being willing to really look at our fears in the daylight. When I think about sweaty nerves in picking up the phone, of what am I actually afraid? Odds are, whoever picks up the phone will be polite, even if that person is busy, distracted, or mad at their spouse that day. None of that has anything to do with me. The person might like and want my work, and pay me for it. The worse thing that can really happen is that I get a rejection, and even that doesn’t have a lot to do with me. Maybe they’re looking for a particular style, already have someone, or just don’t have money.
When I really look at these kinds of fears, I can see they’re irrational. I can think back to isolated times in my life when people acted inappropriately and created those fears in me. One man yelled the worst insults and cuss words at me when I said I didn’t want to work for him. That’s one guy out of how many people with whom I’ve talked? Seeing fears and facing them helps me pick up the phone and pursue my goals – even if I still get a thumping heart when listening to the phone ring.
This image came to me in a dream, and I woke up in the night to scribble a note to myself. Life seemed to have a lot of clarity in that moment, and it seemed obvious that I needed to create it.
This is a large pencil drawing, 10” x 24”, on hot press bristol board. I use whatever pencil I find handy, including very grainy No. 2 school pencils. My last boss said “A real artist can make art with anything”. I thought he was being cheap, but I suppose it’s true. The main thing about this drawing is to keep me focused on goals, not letting myself get bogged down with having the right art supplies, or worrying about talking to strangers.