There is a First Time for Everything...

I sold my first artwork in quite unusual circumstances. It was 10 years ago.

My dance teacher had challenged us to do something that really scared us. And I, *for some reason*, decided I would set up a "pop-up store" and sell my drawings. I chose to set up shop (and by shop I mean a blanket on the floor) at the busiest train station of Belgium, the Central Station in Brussels.

One fine afternoon, I headed out to the train station with about 15 pencil drawings, in the tunnel where people set up blankets to sell bracelets, posters and other souvenirs. On blankets to be able to pack up and run if the cops pass by... Upon arriving, I instantly get paralyzed by fear. More accurately, terror. I can't bring myself to put those drawings out in front of all the passers-by. I want to turn around and hide in bed. It feels like stripping naked, right there in this tunnel with hundreds of people hurrying by to catch their train. Fortunately, my boyfriend was there to encourage me, he even started setting up while I was standing there trying to breathe through the beginning of a panic attack.

It felt like I was standing naked in front of a crowd. It was not my body but my soul that was naked. What if they just laughed at it? Or worse, ignore it?

The price was 2 euros per drawing - I didn't know if anyone would decide to spend 2 euros to buy one of my drawings instead of getting a beer, honestly.

I sold 6 drawings in 2 hours. People LOVED it. So many stopped to look and compliment. And they bought my favorite ones, which were hard to let go of at the time. Two hours were about as much as I could take, so we packed up and went.

It would be another ten years before I worked up the courage to set up shop and show my art again. This time in a more official setting, in a legit art festival, in my own booth. And for more than 2 euros a piece. There is a first time for everything, even when we don't realize it's the beginning of something big.