To be honest, I don’t have a niche.
For years, the number one thing I’ve been told is that to be successful in the arts, I need to find my niche. I never quite understood the concept. I’ve always been an indecisive girl; my heart is heavy with love and curiosity. How could I choose just one thing? Or even one thing within a specific pursuit of creativity? I want to love all forms of creation, in every way my mind and hands and voice will allow me.
I want to fall asleep every night with a novel rising and falling gently across my chest, and my glasses resting crooked over my nose. I want to wake up the next morning and write until my hand aches. I want to notice airplanes scratching the sky, lost buttons, notes that live on the pavement after falling out of pockets. I want to translate them into poetry. I’ll write beneath welling eyes and soft smiles. I want my gentle hum to be the background sound to everything. I want to sing notes like moving water in rooms of dancing candlelight with my closest friends. I want to strum my ukulele with the ocean as my audience. And I want to capture all of it. I want to be able to relive every beautiful and heart-breaking moment with the snap of a shutter. I want to fill flower-covered photo albums with polaroids and printed photos that are still slightly sticky on the back from living on the walls of every room I called mine. I want to hold tiny paintbrushes and that turn nothing into anything.
How could I even imagine a version of life in which I stop taking in all of the world? Every bit of it; the painful and strange and intimate and beautiful pieces… and how it cradles all these truths at once. I cannot stop drawing or writing or creating because I would then cease to be who I am. My niche is simply not thing one. Maybe my niche is feeling everything so fully and deeply that I must find wonder in every avenue of creation in order to survive. I must find the right language for the grief and joy and homesickness and restlessness because I feel it all, everything, all at once. I swear I do. Some days I want to weep as I walk through a crowd, or sit in a lobby, or occupy a spot in a field dotted with picnic blankets. The simple act of witnessing life unfold is enough to make my heart overflow– for all the hands I cannot hold, for all the empty spaces I could fill with love and empathy. I go through each day trying to read all these stories around me. Sometimes I tell them in the soft brush on canvas aching for color and sometimes in the potential of unfilled lines of paper waiting for the scratch of my pen. Sometimes it is unspoken– in the love I feel. But this is only a blog, so I will begin with what I can show you.