When offering perspectives on the downfall of unsung artists and creatives who abandoned their passions for long periods of time, the public is usually told that drugs or mental illness caused these people such difficulties. However, while drug users are usually revered and respected for admitting to their problems, many will shun and shame those who admit to having a mental illness outside of depression or anxiety. It seems that the multifaceted threat of mental illness is never taken as seriously, but in many situations for entertainers and artists, illnesses like depression can come about from a lack of support or positive reception.
While we may not know how much our treatment of to- day’s prominent celebrities can affect their mental health, we do understand how we feel when disappointed or disappointing others. Now, imagine that the thing you want to do most is what disappoints others or doesn’t earn you any support. Some people face that reality every day, and someone you know may be struggling with those same obstacles.
If you really want to show the artists or creatives around you that you appreciate the unique perspective they offer the world, take the time to check in with them emotionally. Oftentimes, it is assumed that as long as the artist can do what they love, they will be happy, but there are so many more elements of creativity that we aren’t aware of. While art can offer an escape from the world, it doesn’t compare to a shoulder to cry on, a friend to laugh with, or a friend to confide in.
If your artist friend has products that they sell from their passion, support them by purchasing from their storefront. Don’t worry about how much you paid; simply buying (and actually using) what you bought from your friend is a statement of support.
Things to Remember as an Artist
You are not alone in your experiences.
The people who do not support your work are not relevant to the success of your work.
It is okay to not be okay; the emotional spectrum includes a multitude of negative feelings, and none of them are wrong to feel.
Find a trusted friend, mentor, or role model to talk about how you feel if you need to.
There is nothing wrong with the path you have chosen. It takes courage to constantly expose your work to the world, and you are now part of a unique group that will influence and inspire the world in ways few can. Be proud of that quality.
Written by: Diamante Hewitt