Category Archives: Artistic Musings

Trust YOUR intuition (and while you’re at it stop listening to your DAMN ego!)

I have two very vulnerable stories about not trusting MY intuition, (instead accepting someone else’s!), and listening to my ego…

A very large portion of artists’ DREAM of being in galleries.

I’ve been no exception.

Which has led me to lesson learning.


Three years ago I was contacted by a gallery in England.  I HAD THE CHANCE OF BEING AN INTERNATIONAL ARTIST!  She was just starting out – which made me a tad bit hesitant – but – AN INTERNATIONAL ARTIST!  I didn’t ask enough questions.  I wanted to be AN INTERNATIONAL ARTIST!  I shipped them…over $10,000 worth of art. Two years later, and only one very highly discounted sale, I contacted her to ask that she ship the remaining paintings back.  Long story, but suffice it to say, the paintings are still there, and she refuses to communicate with me.



I was introduced to a local gallery by a friend whom I considered a good judge of character.  I got a horrid case of the heebie jeebies when I spoke to the owner on the phone.  Meeting him, my radar went on high alert.  And, instead of heeding all of the warning bells, I left my artwork there, with the promise of payment the moment a painting sold.

The first painting sold early June.  I expected a check.  I communicated with him two weeks later. The check was promised in two weeks.  Two weeks went by.  No check.  More communication.  With the promise of a check on Monday.  When I asked if I could come over and pick it up – the conversation went silent.

Every cell in my body told me to get my artwork immediately.

And so I did.

Why didn’t I listen to my intuition?

Why did I rely on my friend’s words rather than the hair on the back of my neck standing on end?

These are my words of wisdom for artists around these two “lessons”.

Decide first whether or not you WANT to be in galleries.

There are many ways for an artist to make a living.

Ask questions.


After all, if they are on the up and up, they will be honest and straight forward.  They will encourage you to ask other artists about their experience.

Have a contract with YOUR terms.

If they won’t sign it – RUN.

Right now, I have $9900 worth of art in England, that I will never see again, because I didn’t trust my intuition.

Thank God, I listened to my gut and picked up my art before the situation repeated itself.

I’m learning…slowly…but always going forward.

I may stumble and fall, but the important thing, is that I keep trying.

I should have paid attention to MY knowing.

Any time I do things out of fear (I “needed” money), ego (AN INTERNATIONAL ARTIST!), or don’t listen (EXPENSIVE “mistakes”) – things turn out poorly.

Heed those warning bells.

Ask questions.

Be curious.

Don’t be afraid to ask for what you want.



What constitutes an “amazing experience”?

Is it making money?  Making connections?  All of the people that helped you along your journey?

Is it all of the above?

I have been on such a GUS (God, Universe, Spirit) journey this year.  It really started when I made the extremely conscious decision to let go of some old self-defeating patterns (i.e. – being a victim, seeing the hole rather than the donut, looking at myself as “less-than”, and HUGE control issues).

Then – the magic began.

I wanted to take a journey with Agnes and Ruby – but, I had no idea where to go.  I put it out on social media for input.  My gallery owner and his wife in Birmingham offered their lake home driveway to “camp” for as long as I chose.  It’s like GUS was starting a breadcrumb trail for me.

The first person I met – was Barry – A true creative, and the happiest person I have ever met in my life.  We shared philosophies every morning over coffee.  He taught me how to use a plasma cutter and welder…..I was and am SO HOOKED!!!   Something about creating Imperfectly Perfect Angel Fire Sculptures filled my soul.

The breadcrumb trail continued with a dear friend suggesting that I try going to market, after I stated that that I want more eyes on my Angels.

Less than a month until market – and I was in creation mode… well as selling a lot to my social media peeps.

I put together a quick booth, not really giving much thought to what was really important, and something that I knew nothing about….which was merchandising.

Every day while at market – another vendor would come by and give me very valuable tips on how to make my booth more pleasing….So grateful for all of the help!!!!   By the last day, I finally had people stopping at my booth to look (unfortunately – not to buy – but – hey – there are more important things – sometimes – than money)

I had many people helping me and giving me words of encouragement when there was absolutely NO ONE THERE, and I was freaking out!!!  Even the second day when a dear friend came to help me who has a huge sales background – and he was a bit concerned also!!!  For all of my friends, family and acquaintances, who were there for me…I am so grateful.  I probably would have broken my booth down and said to heck with it without you.

The breadcrumbs continued….I met Pam Williams from the Las Vegas Market…the real deal….confirmed by all of the other vendors….and she asked me to be in the Las Vegas Market….Yikes…REALLY????   After just doing an “unsuccessful” market in Dallas???

I have to try.

I’m not willing to give up yet.

Perhaps, the wholesale market is not “my thing”.  It is flooded with China made very cheap products.  Very few handcrafted items.

But, I HAVE to try at a market that is better attended to know for sure.

I posted that it was an amazing experience –  few assumed that an “amazing experience” meant sales were good.

They weren’t.

The connections and people willing to help was what was amazing.

I’m going to try again.

I LOVE these Perfectly Imperfect Angels.

They contain a huge part of my soul.

Maybe, it really is all about the journey.

So Many Blessings to you all,



I have a HUGE confession

Posting some of my latest work scares the S**T out of me. There.  I said it. But, let me tell you why.  First of all, even though I have ventured into non-objective art in the past, and quit because of “my three yo could do this”, and “give me a couple of shots of tequila… Continue Reading

About Paula
Raven Shaman