Collaborations are hot right now on Facebook. It seems every few weeks, another is revealed. For those who don’t know what I’m talking about, collabs are when 30-100 sugar artists from all over the globe all create a sugar art piece based upon a theme. No one gets paid for these. Sometimes they get published in magazines; sometimes they live only on Facebook.
Every time one debuts, I search out all the artists. I like their business pages. I send friend requests. Why? Because I celebrate their artistic joy and freedom. They do this, essentially, for themselves! How rarely do we treat ourselves in this manner?
For every person like me who loves to see them, there are just as many folks who are hurt or angry over not being included. They feel snubbed. They feel left out. They feel like the “cool kids” are in a clique and they are at the uncool kids table.
I will admit that the first few collabs, I was sad that no one thought of me. I really wanted that chance to be a part of something so cool. One day I realized that I had never let anyone know that I would be interested in such a thing. People may have thought I was too busy. People may have thought that teachers wouldn’t want to do it.
I was lucky that one day in a chat group, a subject came up and I expressed interest. Next thing I knew, I was in a collab. The comradery was beautiful to see. Artists supporting and encouraging others, regardless of skill level.
There are a lot of collaborations coming out before the end of the year, and I know that more people are going to feel hurt that they weren’t included. It is hard to watch a friend get to be part of something. You wonder why your friend didn’t bring you along. The feelings you have are totally normal. The key, however, is to not beat yourself up over being left out.
So what do you do? You have a couple options. You start telling people you would like to participate in one. Or you create your own. There are no rules. You can start a collaboration, even if you are a newer decorator. Choose a theme. Set a deadline. Invite friends, heroes, mentors or simply folks whose work inspires you. Set up a private group to discuss the collaboration rules and requirements. Just do it.
You never know who you will become friends with. I genuinely have made some great connections from the groups I’m in. Don’t do it to try to grab fame…people can tell who the team players are. Do it for the love of the theme and the love of creating something that YOU chose. That will be its own reward.