Blogging is not for Introverts

Today we turn the tables – Lee paints and Craig writes – each getting coaching and courage from the other.*

I have lost all control of my audience and, with it, my composure. I imagine myself as Jim Carrey on The Truman Show, my life broadcast to anyone who wants to watch. I feel naked.

I’m surprised at the disruption a week of blogging has caused me. I thought blogging would mean sitting alone, making art and uploading it to my computer. I’m an introvert. I like being alone.

Even when I’m in front of a crowd, demonstrating or teaching, I can predictably dial people in and, after a session, hide. My gig’s over. I’ve risked influencing or conversing with those in the room, but I’ve had a measure of control – I’ve had an audience whose responses are familiar. Not so much on-line. Posts go out and can spread anywhere, like poison ivy. I feel itchy.

So I pace tonight, this morning, actually. Why were Lee and I compelled to enter in? I blame her: “She took the first bite!” But the creative pull was so strong I bit as well. And my eyes now see the good and the evil, and I am fighting the urge to hide or find a big fig leaf – to instead stand before a virtual audience, a community beyond my capacity to know, elect, pace or control its reactions. I am walking in dumb faith … again.

Why does a guy who used to ride a 10-foot unicycle and juggle to draw a crowd, who has had hundreds of his paintings published and distributed around the world for nearly 30 years, have difficulty posting little sketches and notes on the blogosphere? Can I embrace this new platform for creative expression, one that my alter-ego wife and I can enjoy together? Can the differences we ponder in our sketches and notes really resonate with others and offer any small bits of hope?

Creative self-loathing enhances my painting process. I hope it works for blogging as well. As we begin week 2, I am completely perplexed, yet fully engaged. I am terrified and invigorated both.

 

*In 31 years of marriage to a watercolor artist and teacher, Lee has never before painted in watercolor. In 31 years of marriage to a writer and editor, Craig is taking his first writing workshop – led by a skilled facilitator, not Lee.

Comments

  1. I feel your itch. Losing control can be the beginning of the wildest ride of your life and draw the biggest audience. When you step out on your edge and jump into the unknown, people want to watch because they want to try something, too and are looking for their courage.

    Your voice in this piece is clear and strong and confident in what you don’t know. It gives me courage to try something that’s scary for me.

  2. This is just too great. SO GLAD Y’ALL ARE DOING THIS! Love you both.

  3. A fig leaf. :)

  4. Well said…your descriptions are not only visible but emotional as well.
    I feel your itchy UN- settledness and positive angst of pacing energy.
    Like I said day one…you two have me baited and hooked.
    Love the adventures and risks you are exploring!

  5. Wonderful! Great blog and art. Let us know if you need a fig tree starter. We’ve had 100′s of figs from our tree this summer.

  6. Well said. As another introverted blogger, I do so only because my publishers tell me I must. (It goes against my nature.) Yet, I enjoy reading others blogs, finding “Sketches and Notes” and other’s blogs fascinating. They are like wonderful little intimate bits and pieces from inside your mind, like finding a tiny piece of a huge puzzle and wondering how it all fits together. Reading a blog about how it is hard to write a blog is refreshing, especially since it is my thought, exactly. ;) It is nice that you were honest. Thanks for sharing. I especially enjoy seeing your little watercolors, too. Would love to read about your watercolor techniques. I would love to read about how you work with light. BTW, Lee’s watercolors are beautiful, too.

    • Lee Lueck says:

      As we get going on this, we appreciate ideas for future blogs. Technique might be an easier topic to talk about than exposure.

  7. Mary Chandler says:

    Well done! Interesting comment: creative self loathing enhances my painting process. Hmmm. I am curious for more detail.

  8. YOU GUYS!! You both did it! And you both did quite well. :)
    I have the coolest in-laws around.

Trackbacks

  1. [...] Yesterday Craig said he wanted to hide from all the readers. In my case, readers (or potential readers) want to hide from me. [...]