March 28, 2023: It used to be that you joined a creative group not only because you loved the subject matter, but because you actually valued making friends, sharing common experiences, and championing others in their craft.
Over the years I've seen a steady trend in becoming a member of an artists' group purely for the piggy back advertising and the opportunity to make an income at the shows the group sponsors. This type of member doesn't attend regular meetings. They don't volunteer at the group events. They don't serve on any committees, teach or sit any workshops, or offer to invest their time back into the community by being on the board. They're only there for two things - income and to build a following. Fast food. Low risk. One way.
Life is never singular.
We need others. We need to be available for others. We need to pass on our knowledge and be willing to learn from others who have it. We need to not make money more important than seeing somebody else.
It really makes me sad to see so many purposely choosing to forgo the real opportunity, which is living a life that flows intentionally outward to journey one of the most critical treasure hunts of all - the priceless commodity of relationship.