To pivot or to persevere? Or more bluntly – to give up or to not to give up? This is a haunting question, a question that has ramifications far after an answer has been chosen and it’s also a question that almost everyone in our community has had to face at one time or another. How do you know when to give up and when to keep trying?

Khiri Lee | Artwitch & Zine Creatrix

As a full time artist I don’t think I will ever give up on making art. I may at some point give up on making art as a career, and my hope is that it will be an easy decision. I left my job in the non profit sector in December 2017 to pursue art full time. I had a lot of conversations with friends, family, my partner, and the company I was leaving, before making the dive. I also did a ton of research on what it would take, and what it really meant to be a full-time artist. In one blog post I came across the advice that it takes at least five years to establish yourself as an artist in the world. Anytime I feel disheartened I remember that I am still in the establishing phase of my career, and I promised not to give up before I hit that five year benchmark. So in December 2022 I will sit down to assess if it is valuable to keep going or not. I think setting hard deadlines or creating a quantifiable plan is a necessity when striking out into new territory as an entrepreneur or self-employed business owner. This helps me know where I stand on the continuum of keep going or give up. Read more>>

Jennifer Ho | Graphic Designer and Cut Paper Artist

To keep going or to give up is a difficult question on it’s own and coupled with knowing which path to pursue creates a whole other monster. I think if the underlying foundational passion is still bellowing beneath your decision to create, the answer will always be to keep going, especially in the hard times of uncertainty that creep in on us. That uncertainty has tested my passion and desire to continue pursuing the hard path of moving past the thought of failure, but I keep going despite my own doubts because I love what I do. That sense of knowing to continue comes from a deep fire within that ignited the decision in the first place. It’s human nature to test ourselves and doubt ourselves every once in awhile but we persevere through our sheer dedication to our craft and allow all the other noise to fall by the wayside. Read more>>

Lindsay Klatt | Victim Advocate for Survivors of Sexual Assault

Representing victims of sexual assault within the parameters of our criminal justice system is often daunting and frustrating. Many days I feel like I’m fighting with someone or for something on behalf of victims; or in the pursuit to maintain a seat at the table and validate my profession. So how do I know whether to keep going or give up? I know to keep going because the struggles victims face and therefore the challenges I face advocating for them continue to remind me of the need for victim advocacy and victim representation. The challenges show me that the work is important and that we still have a long way to go societally and within our systems in the way we treat victims. Read more>>