Hi friends! I have been wrestling with this decision for about a year. I have continually been feeling like I have missed the mark on providing good live videos, or maybe the videos are the same as they have always been but people are tired of it. The more time I spend preparing for them the worse they seem to perform (views) and I am just plain burned out. I really thought the low views were a fluke and if I stayed to a consistent time the viewers would come back when they had time but after a year of grinding with no improvement I need to face the facts.
The friday tutorials have been stressing me out. How stupid does that sound? This is art, it is supposed to be relaxing and lessen worry, not add to it. I really have a hard time letting go, or quitting, anything that I start but I have realized if I want to try new and exciting things I have to l give something up. I have spent 3 days preparing for some of the live streams thinking that I want to make sure that there is no wasted time in the stream so it will be as valuable as a prerecorded edited video and I don’t waste viewers time by looking for stuff when I am live. Also to answer questions on the fly I need to know what I am teaching by heart, otherwise I will get distracted and have the dreaded “dead air.” Hmmm, I am probably missing the whole carefree point of live streaming LOL!
It reminds me of this apple orchard we used to take the kids to. It was owned by a little old couple and I think they had all but retired from farming but opened it up to apple picking each year. It was small and near to our house and the apples were inexpensive and easy to pick because the branches were low. We went there year after year and I started to notice that the trees were not bearing much fruit and every year it got worse. That is how I have been feeling. Successful farmers rotate their crops to keep from depleting the soil. I feel depleted. I need to try new things just like a farmer needs to plant new crops. I want to jump on an idea when I have it and not just write it down in a notebook so I can go back to it when I have a free moment because the energy is never the same. My best and most successful videos are ones where I was so excited to share in idea or technique I discovered that I just couldn’t wait to share it with the world! I need to get that spark back. I need the flexibility in my schedule so I can jump on an idea when I have it. I find when I was worried about “what am I going to paint Friday?” it would preoccupy my mind, make me restless and squash my creativity. I actually have felt more relaxed and creative just since making the decision to take a break from these streams.
I have always been nervous about posting a schedule because I didn’t want anyone to expect something and be disappointed. However I do have a basic framework to my channel which as enough flexibility for me to jump on those fun art ideas. On Tuesday and Thursday I usually post a papercraft project. On Wednesday I have a watercolor tutorial that is real-time and beginners can follow along. Saturdays are usually reviews but can be something else. Sundays are Sketchbook Sunday where I show what I am working on in my sketchbook to stretch my abilities and grow and this is always a narrated time-lapse and can be drawing, painting or mixed media. Anything can happen on the other days, or maybe nothing. I miss playing with other mediums (pastel, I’m looking at you!) and making other crafts like jewelry, clothing and altered stuff. To be honest, I am tired of listening to YouTube “experts” who say you need to focus your channel on one thing and keep people on the platform as long as possible. I think it is better to share such awesome ideas that people want to turn off the computer and create! If that sounds good to you please stick around. We are going to have some fun! Till next time happy crafting!