Lately I've been thinking a lot about "The Ask." When my older brother and I were little, we watched many a Saturday morning cartoon. Road Runner, FogHorn Leghorn, Looney Tunes and Woody Woodpecker to name a few. Most of the characters at one point or another would say, "You asked for it!" and then POW! Right in the kisser. It struck me this week how both in our personal and professional lives we don't often get that proverbial punch because, well, we don't actually ask for it.
What I've learned is you have to ask for the work you want ...
I'm grateful to live in a beautiful neighborhood. For 10 years now, I've walked my kids up and down our street to the local elementary school. I always pass a house that is so southern, so neatly groomed and inviting that everyone who sees it tells me that it is their "favorite house" in the neighborhood. It's mine, too.
One afternoon, I saw that the homeowner was having her backyard picket fence taken down. It was old and rustic and had the greatest greenish patina to it. I could see fabulous signs being painted on that wood. I stopped to ask if she wouldn't mind if I had a few sections. She was thrilled to give them away and had hoped that someone could use them for something creative. She didn't want them to go to waste… ahh my kind of gal. From there, our friendship began. I would see her around town at craft shows and community events. I always wanted to paint a portrait of her home... finally I asked. Turns out, she had lots of custom paintings for me to do. I happily created 5 commissioned watercolors for these awesome homeowners.
In my art classes I share 7 Creatives Truths with the students. One of them is to "Do Something That Scares You!" Sometimes that just means asking for a job you want.
More on this subject next week. Anyone have any success stories to share of stepping out and asking? Inspire us!
Whether I am working with a client on their brand identity, teaching students or creating a custom watercolor piece, I hope to refresh and inspire others with my work. Read more ...