Opening up to others has been a struggle of mine for years now. For a while I felt as though I had to tuck pieces of me away, shrinking from view, hiding in plain sight. It was as though there was no space for me to be myself in totality.
When I began to paint, I was able to express myself. All of these unfiltered, raw, and vulnerable thoughts would pour out onto the canvas. It became almost ritualistic in the way I created early on. I'd come home after class back in college, make a spread on the floor, put on a few jazz albums, and zone out for hours. Time went on, I continued painting in school. One day during my last semester of undergrad I got a message on Instagram asking if I wanted to be in a showcase. I had no idea my nonchalant "yes" would propel me down a path of self discovery and entrepreneurship.
Over the last three years, I have tried to create distance between the artist, brand, and personal life of Bri Simpson. I have found complete comfort in a room full of strangers, and ease with public speaking. I have made myself at home when traveling to foreign cities for art exhibits. Yet, to open up to associates or a group of my peers, I’ve found myself paralyzed, often shying away from an intimate conversation, and again shrinking from view.
The distance from my art brand and my personal life would make more sense if the two weren’t interconnected. However, much of my work stems from my very own thoughts, emotions, and self-realization, so the two naturally overlap. In my efforts to lessen my reflection in my art, to some extent, it has stumped my creative growth. And to be quite honest, I'm tired. Tired of hiding, and dimming my light when all of me deserves to be seen and celebrated.
I need to make a space for me.
Part of this push to be more of myself has come with the birth of my daughter. It's hard to explain, but carrying life in you and pushing out a 7 pound person makes you look at things differently. During my pregnancy and my daughter's first year, I took time away from everything. Work. Social life. Art. My transition to motherhood was very introspective for me. I started writing more in this space. Poems and stories poured out of me, idea after idea longing to burst out of my notebooks.During this time it became clear that I needed to approach art making differently. That this separation, this habit of self- compartmentalizing needed to be undone. And instead I needed to make a space for me, to freely express myself as I see fit. So here we are. Ready to take on the newness.
What you can come to expect from this blog is authenticity and reflections on not just my art, but the influences and inspiration behind it too. Some art things, some mom/ life things, and some feeling things. My hopes for sharing more is that you have more than one way to connect with what I do.