Some days I feel like a manual typewriter in our computerized world...and some days I wish I had a manual typewriter instead of a computer. In many ways I secretly suspect I would be happier in my naive bliss.
When you are in a business with a very narrow playing field for a long time you gain certain perspective and insight on things along with the honing of your skill. You are a savvy business person, and you are kind to your customers and listen to their wants and desires. You believe you are doing your best to stay competitive, up to the current trends and yet be true to yourself. You think you are going along and doing just fine. But then the day inevitably comes when you discover that what you think you know may not be relevant any more.
I am frequently fascinated by how many things seem to matter that never used to. Like the specific definition of a word, or how changes have come about in how we approach what used to be common place business practices. Naturally everyone has an opinion and naturally no one agrees.
I feel as if I could get lost in minutia some days. Did I say this wrong, did I do that wrong? Is it really wrong since it's my business? Do collectors really care about these things, or is it just that we, as artists are over thinking it now? Do I seem like an antique white elephant in the room? If I do, is it just today or is it everyday?
It's not enough to make my bears and sell them anymore. Now I have to be a photographer, a writer, and a coder. I have to worry that someone will think I copied them because I had the same idea at the same time, and I have to be concerned that I am unique enough, when I make traditional bears. But on top of all that...I have to think about everything in the business end with new perspective too. The world changed somewhere along the line and I am just getting the memos about it now.
It's exhausting and sometimes I am not surprised I can't get out of my head enough to actually work. Computers are a wonderful thing in that they have brought us all so much closer together and we can share information so freely now and also that we can reach people the world over that we never would have dreamed of 20 years ago. But maybe there was something to be said for a little less sharing and closeness? I don't know. Maybe I am just getting old.