Portfolio of Hope

photo of woman painting in brown wooden easel

I have something that I want to tell you and, you might want to sit down for this…

Are you ready?

Okay, here we go;

‘It’s okay to admit that things make you happy.’

Controversial, I know!! 😮

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.com

In a generation which seemingly loves to make light of how much we hate ourselves via an internet culture which is largely fuelled on self-deprecating humour, this is something that, although seemingly common sense, we need reminding of every now and then…

So, let this be it.

A reminder that it’s okay to find joy in the small things;

tomato soup


(from the tin, thank you Mr Heinz)

rustic bread for dipping,

cut to double as a door stop.


and rainbows

and showers

(when you’re at home with nowhere to be).

To find joy in life is not ‘cringe’

it is wholesome

and it is (wholly) beautiful.

The fact that we have arrived at a point where to express our love for life is seen as ‘cringe’ is incredibly sad.

When ‘cringiness’ and passion have become two words which are (wrongly) interchangeable, to be seen as ‘cringe’ should actually be the greatest honour, because, to be seen as cringe means that you have a clear passion for something.

To have nothing that lights you up inside/to have nothing that you’re passionate about, it makes for a very boring existence.

So, lean into your ‘cringiness’.

Do more of the things that make you want to do a happy, jumping up and down dance, no matter how much people might view you as being ‘cringy’ for doing so.

In fact, maybe you should do so precisely because people view it as ‘cringy.’ To encourage more people to be expressive with who they are, to realise that to be happy is worth more than the acquisition of validation from random people online (which is always fleeting by the way, the sense of validation because, no sooner have you posted something that they deem to be ‘cringy’, than they have moved on to looking at someone else’s post, commenting the same, having completely forgotten about yours)…

Surely your passion then is worth the odd negative comment from literal strangers who are sat behind a keyboard, probably with no passion of their own, their mundane existence constituting the hate fuelled ‘omg she’s so cringe’ comments directed at your passion. Because, you have something they don’t, and they feel bitter about that.

Just think though, some of the greatest artists of all time, if they were alive today, would undoubtedly be labelled as ‘cringe’ by internet trolls. Take David Bowie and Mick Jagger (as a very random example, it’s the first that came into my head for some reason) and their world famous rendition of Marvin Gaye’s song, ‘Dancing in the street.’ The music video, and even the song lyrics, are what people today would label as being ‘cringy.’ But, people love it. They loved it. And, surely that’s all that matters.

There are always going to be people who don’t like what you do, particularly if you’re a creative of any kind. Putting your art out into the world makes you vulnerable to criticism- I’ve literally been told that I’m going to hell in response to a poem I wrote…

In other words, your art is just not going to be everyone’s cup of tea…

But, that’s okay. For, if you enjoy making it then it’s worth it, and your passion will be reflected and make it more enjoyable for other people who are watching/viewing your art too. The criticisers of creatives are the minority amongst what can be a really beautiful community of so much joy and love.

And so, ultimately, it’s about remembering that there will always be people who have something negative to say about you, but, if you enjoy it, then you should keep doing it anyway.

You should keep putting your art out, with passion, and people will see that passion reflected in your work and support you. They might even be inspired to start something of their own which, in my opinion, is the biggest honour one could have. To know that you have inspired someone else to create in a climate that instils fear in people who are expressive and deviate from the ‘norm’, well, as I said, it’s the greatest honour…

Keep creating

with passion.

Keep being cringy

with passion.

Keep living life

with passion.

It’s infectious and will inspire other people to do the same.

Just keep on being you,

keep on being your full intense, beautiful, ‘cringy’ self

and the world will follow suit.

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