I started a business and I didn’t even know

I am super excited to share my new website spacesbysmithav.com designed by my daughter. It was her gift to me on my birthday. I had been long wanting to create a site but I had no idea how to go about it. Also, I did not want to hire anybody else to do it because that would mean answering endless questions on ‘Which color background would you like?’ ‘What font should we have?’ ‘What options should we provide?’ so on and so forth. And I’m terrible at answering questions that require me to choose. That’s one reason I do not get my dresses tailored – I had written all about my dilemma at the tailor’s in a older post A Visit to the Tailor… Not my cup of tea . If you read this, you’ll understand my predicament.

Anyway, coming back to my new website, my daughter managed to create this without asking me any questions, which was truly amazing. The new site allows you to subscribe to it so you can remain updated on my new work and buy my work if you like or simply browse through the site. The idea to create the site was because I had been receiving requests for my paintings and I had been dilly-dallying on those requests as I had no link or pdf that had all my work in one place.

All those who’ve been reading my blog know about my art journey. I embarked on it at the beginning of the lockdown. Art is something that’s made me finally understand ‘Practice makes one perfect,’ and believe in Malcom Gladwell’s line – you need atleast 10,000 hours of practice to be good at something. Not that, 10,000 hours is etched in stone. You may need more. It basically means you need lots and lots of practice to be good at anything you want. Like I said, I’m far from ‘Good,’ and I have a very long journey ahead of me in the field of art, and yet with this website I have taken a giant leap to put myself out there and say, ‘I’m ready to do what it takes because I finally found what I truly love doing.’ Art is my ikigai. Yes, you heard it right. Above all else that I do, art is what I wake up and look forward to. It doesn’t feel like work to me.

Ikigai is the Japanese concept Ikigai (ee-key-guy) is a Japanese concept that combines the terms iki, meaning “alive” or “life,” and gai, meaning “benefit” or “worth.” When combined, these terms mean that which gives your life worth, meaning, or purpose. Ikigai is similar to the French term “raison d’etre” or “reason for being.”

Positive psychology.com

Like most things in life, I wasn’t confident about art initially. It helped that I was doing it for myself with no end goal or need to prove anything to anybody. However, requests for my paintings from acquaintances and friends, gave me the confidence that I needed to say, ‘My paintings are up for sale.’

Seeing one of my paintings on a neighbor’s living room wall was pure bliss and hearing her and her husband say, ‘its the focal point in our living room,’ gave me the courage that I needed. But that is not to say that I no longer fear a blank canvas. I do and maybe that’s why I’ve decided not to do customized paintings but paint what appeals to me. I might still do bigger sizes of my paintings if I receive a request but nothing out of the blue. Not yet. If people like my work, that’s wonderful. If they don’t, it’s fine. Afterall, art is a personal taste. There’s nothing good or bad.

The purpose of the site – to provide people an opportunity to pick up a painting if they like without having to come back to me to check on the price and take their time to think about it before deciding to make the purchase. I know how much I dislike sales assistants hounding me when I shop.

When my daughter created the website that was all there was to it- to have a link that could be shared around. Only yesterday I realised I was in actual business (whether or not the product sells) when I received a call from the customer service officer from the payment gateway I had provided on my site and he said I needed to have a T &C, Cancellation policy and a refund policy on my website. So, whether or not the site is going to be a success, I still have to put all these things together. I can proudly say that I have a vocation. I am no longer a homemaker which was the role I was relegated to (by banks and other institutions that required me to fill up forms and write my profession) after two decades in banking. I now run a business! How cool is that.

Last but not the least, I just want to say, ‘Thank you,’ to all of you who have been watching me paint, encouraging me with your kind words, to all those who’ve bought my art (you know who you are). I don’t want to mention your names here because I’m not sure if the privacy policy applies (now that I’m in business).

Don’t forget to check out the website, to subscribe and do let me know what you think of it. All feedback is welcome. Remember I’m only a beginner.

Thank you again.

Cheers,

SmithaV

Copyright@SmithaVishwanathsblog.com. All Rights Reserved.

9 comments

  1. I’m really happy for you. You have found your ikigai!! What an incredibly thoughtful gift. Was it a surprise or did you know that it was coming along? Anyway, it’s brilliant what she did and the site is beautiful. You’ve got so many works! I love all the doors, of course, especially Knock Knock, but also the elephants, and Meet Me on the Bridge, and the Golden Apple! To name but a few. Just excellent all of it. Ride it high, you deserve it!

    I wrote a post once, trying to establish what mine is. Still searching, but the post is here: https://manjamaksimovic.wordpress.com/2016/04/02/ikigai/

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you so much Manja💕. I didn’t see it coming. I had asked for a pdf or a folder with all my paintings in it so I could send it to those who asked. But this website totally blew me. I’m so glad you took a look and liked what you saw. It makes me so happy🙂. I’m going to hop over and read your post. Thanks Manja for the good wishes.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much Robbie. I will tell Akanksha. She will be extremely happy. I wanted to tag you, then wasn’t sure🙂. Looking forward to your review. Thank you again for buying my art❤.

      Liked by 2 people

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