I feel this same "who in this world do I think I am???" wonderment each time I decide I've either got to get up the nerve to show some of my work or just shut up about it. This hot-cold, tense, bipolar indecision has paralyzed me for years, and not just about art.
Lynne, my old buddy, actually freed me from some of this paralysis three or four years ago. I was carrying on about the impossibility and hopelessness of my watercolors one day and this was what she said: "Everybody else puts their crap out there... I don't see what's the big deal about you putting your crap out there too." (And let me tell you, I still to this day don't think she even said it in a very nice way. But she remembers none of that, of course. She only remembers her gentle urging and encouragement. Ha!)
The truth is, I felt free as a bird after I thought about that।
Because here is the deal: If I'm going to wait until the things I paint or collage are perfect and wonderful and the whole world is clamouring to see it because of their great admiration of my greatness as a human being and all, chances are better than fair that I am going to die without having done much... and worse than that, what in the world am I going to say that I've been doing for the last ten years at my next class reunion?
Anyway, so here comes the old Interloper Artist. Interloper is how I feel. I'm embarrassed. I feel foolish. I don't belong. I'm a fraud and I know everybody is surely going to catch on quick to my arrogance when you read about my big artistic self. And this will naturally bring about the just reward for such behavior: backlash from an antagonist ridiculer who will instantly recognize me for what I am. An idiot.
So today, as I worked feverishly on my latest piece... and oh my goodness! The exuberance I felt while immersed in the process is something that I want to share. It's something that I want to encourage others to participate in. It's something that seems as life-giving as pure, sweet, fresh air. Perhaps the process of creating something lifts up a human soul to commune with God. And maybe, in the briefest and faintest of ways, when we are immersed in creative endeavor, we sometimes glimpse God's own hand on ours just as we guide the hands of our children when teaching them a beloved skill.
And so a-interloping we will go।
P.S. Actually, I don't believe for one second that anyone will care what I've been doing when my next class reunion rolls around. I am very well nuts, but at least I'm not under THAT particular delusion!