Feed an Ego Starve a Fervor
Who doesn’t like seeing their name in lights?
Even the shy , the introvert and the recluse who may shun a face-to-face, nonetheless listen with satisfaction behind the door when their deed is acknowledged, an accomplishment accredited, or respect awarded.
For many years I refused to sell my artwork. It was a personal thing, an integral part of me. Until one day someone gave me the ultimate complement, making me an offer I couldn’t refuse and my mindset change to, “Heck, I can do another one just like that.” But I couldn’t, since one experience of creation is never identical to another.
Still, I learned to live with it just like I learned to live with my children growing up and one by one leaving for school or for a life elsewhere. Ever since childhood my art seemed to have gained me respect and appreciation from friends and strangers alike. The artist, I think, thrives on those kudos, accepting the clichéd starving-artist status in exchange for the occasional fleeting pat on the back or the all-important recognition when a collector puts the money where his mouth is.
When I started Thinkering and came up with the idea of inviting guest characters into the comic strip I had a couple of reasons in mind. My chief motivation was the creativity, meshing a total stranger into the inner sanctum of my being, creating a tangible acquaintance out of bits of data floating in cyberspace.
My guests have been gracious, letting me know how excited, honored, humbled, stoked and proud they felt for being a part of the experience. They’ve shared in the thrill of being a part of something creative and nourished their egos by sharing it with their own circles. As they did for my ego by investing a few seconds to subscribe and get a piece of me in their inbox every morning; by commenting and blogging about my posts and adding me to their list of favorites—or just by showing up. Occasionally I even get Thinkered right back by fellow artists! And lest we forget, when WordPress promoted Thinkering to Freshly Pressed more than 3,000 new visitors showed up, many of whom opted to stick around. And then wining the Beautiful Blogger Award - I could blush with pride!
It isn’t the same as being an egotist. That’s when a person is more interested in himself than in me…