Exposed as an Artist

Tina D.

Tina D.

My unemployment ended in early September (like most peoples!).  As a freelancer, I needed additional work to supplement teaching poetry in the schools, and giving workshops in businesses. Contracts were slow-moving; everyone was so busy.  I thought of the skills I enjoy most, and that could have the greatest impact: motivator of teams; community builder; communicator and storyteller; and workshop facilitator. I lumped them all in a professional summary, and looked on CraigsList.

Two weeks later I was hired. They hired me to work on the app using my skills in engagement; but definitely not my skills in social media management. I’ve had to stretch my skills in that department–including using a project management app.   They took a risk–went outside their box–and hired the poet. I discovered I was hired also because–as an artist–they wanted me to connect with one of their communities–called Bailiwik–@ 18th Street Art Center (18SAC); that was an important match!  It happens that the liaison at 18SAC was someone I was in contact with throughout COVID in an attempt to get a grant. Coincidence? She didn’t think so…we’re all connected by smaller and larger communities around us; she and I were in the same circle.

I’ve been working at Bailiwik for one month. On the one hand it’s a learning curve regarding the tech part; on the other I have the chance to refine skills, and connect with a new team of workers, artists/writers, and community members that rounds out my skill set. My desire to create stronger communities through art is probably the central theme that inspires all of us at Bailiwik to dig deeper and find better ways to make connections.   If you go to the 18SAC Bailiwik you’ll find poetry that I’ve written as well as poetry from members. I like to hook audiences into believing they can write a poem because I believe that’s true. You’ll also find deals for coffee and sandwiches, Happy Hour, and Friday Game Night; all just a hop, skip and jump on your phone to Bailiwik: our community.

Bailiwik is about being in the circle. You don’t have to work for Bailiwik to get the support. But you do need to connect with your community; inside and outside your neighborhood. It could be through one of our communities or a Bailiwik already set up: Culver City @ BLANKSPACES, 2nd Street Santa Monica @BLANKSPACES or 18SAC. It’s having a chance to communicate on the inside, and to be an insider with a group that’s part of your club or your tribe. In the short-term or in the long-term they can provide upskills, opportunities, fun places to eat, drink and be merry or to just connect for a cup of sugar or a hammer and a nail.

Speak up and say who you are. Sometimes I write poetry in my posts. Sometimes I just talk about my mood or honor a friend. Set up your account on Bailiwik, and be heard in your neighborhood. Become the gatherer–say “hello” to people you haven’t met, but who share mutual interests on Bailiwik. Get your app from either the Apple or Google app store, become a member–it’s free–and BEGIN TODAY!


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