One of our Mz’ was a participant in the early stages of the Contemporary DIY movement including being the first person that Etsy did a video portrait on. Her process is extremely tactile as a move through materials including yarn up-cycled found objects as well as painting and collage techniques. She shared her thoughts on that experience and thoughts on consumption, exchange and art:

The combination of running an online store and having a creative process led me to explore various contracts of exchange economics and resource acquisition these themes are prevalent in the work as I often deconstruct context and value in various manifestations.

My conclusion is that it is harder to be an artist than to make money. Money is simple and binary buy low sell high. It’s a metrics of time and productivity. The hard part about money is we are not metric and binary in human composition. That’s the skill of robots.

Creation part of being an artist is a conversation with the gods, it’s a show up the party butt as naked thing. Its being all up in your feelings. My practice is skill based but themes are intuitive. Unless it’s used as a material or for logistics such as buying supplies, money isn’t useful in the creation stage. In the form of excess or scarcity money is generally more of a hindrance in the creation process.

Here comes the business part of being an artist. That part is a true shit show. Between buyers, curators, gallerist, commissions, day jobs, side hustles, patrons and institutions it has the potential to be the most complicated financial structure that exists.

I never subscribed to the doctrine of being a starving artist. But that’s just me. It’s not fun to be starving, it’s not fun to be able to have to decide whether or not you’re going to put gas in your car feed yourself, I have no false illusions about that. Artist contributes so much to society that it seems ridiculous to have a grumbling belly while you create vision for folks and challenge people to widen perspective. That means that I don’t find any nobility in being a starving artist. I feel like if you can have a conversation with the gods you can also have a conversation with a financial person. Money ain’t everything but options are good and struggle life is struggly. that being said,I’ve been known to be extremely frugal. I go through these periods of time where I decide that I’m not buying anything new or I’m only supporting handmade or locally made goods. Because too much stuff just feels like too much stuff and I can’t quantify the value of my purchases.