The Puppet Master Always Leaves Clues: Part 2

puppet master

Last time, we were looking at how you ferret out the invisible puppet strings directing any aspect of your art career by paying very close attention to the choices you make that don’t lead you in the direction you actually want.

There’s another well known way those puppet strings can operate with what comes off as a reasoned, friendly approach, but with such expert control there’s no way of catching the Puppet Master in the act.

Most often, it’s called denial, which is easily recognized because we’ll proceed whatever we are denying with “but, but, but…(then add in our well thought out, perfectly reasonable rationale)”

Only, there’s another far more devious strategy that the Puppet Master has at its disposal.

But First Some Background Material

Over the years of working privately, one-on-one with artists who are determined to move their art careers forward, I’ve encountered a very small minority who have a hard time taking even the tiniest step into their dreams.

Inevitably, these artists are being haunted by one of those aspects in all of our lives where, at the time of the event, it was clear that The Other was in some way mistreating, or abusing, The Now Artist.

And this event raised many doubts about the core nature of being human: was it safe to be human? Was it safe to trust? Was it okay to be yourself then; is it okay now?

Some artists are lucky enough or clear-sighted enough or know just how to get the support they need or simply more able to be deeply honest with them selves, and they do climb out of that messy hole, leaving – in varying degrees – the scars behind them.

But what can happen when The Event becomes so interwoven into your identity that letting it go feels impossible?

How Do We Not Believe Who We Believe We Are?

One artist, years ago, knew that an ally could help her untangle what was holding her back from getting into the galleries she most wanted. Her work was sophisticated on all levels, and very compelling for potential buyers and collectors. Her articulation of her work was equally competent and up to the task of getting high-end representation. And I was excited about working with her.

If only those darned puppet strings hadn’t gotten in the way.

Many years before this artist came to me, like so many of us, she had an Event that became woven into what I call an Identity Story.

And yes, we all do this, weave our stories into who we feel we are. Most of the time, though, this is a useful strategy for developing a coherent personality.

However, sometimes the negative impact of The Event is given so much power over our identity that even after the event has been resolved, The Puppet Master can pull those strings and make us dance.

In this case, once I made it clear that releasing The Event, and letting go of those puppet strings was the first step in our work together, out came the justification gloves.

When Justification Takes A Stand…

you know the Puppet Master is alive and kicking!

One way you can instantly spot the puppet strings is to pay attention to where you find yourself justifying a choice, a decision, or the stand you are taking.

The very act of justifying is the clue, and especially if you’ve created an iron-clad case around why The Event gets to have repeated air time in your life.

For this artist, The Event had come to define an aspect of self that was terrified if The Event became a non-event, that self would be terminated. So the conversation we had was a back and forth of mature self-awareness coupled with justifications for why The Event was being kept alive in the present-day, retelling.

And even though the puppet strings were being acknowledged, the right of the Puppet Master to remain in control was off the table.

What Are You Justifying?

You, and your work, deserve to be free of all puppet strings.

This next week, gently notice where you are justifying a comment, a behavior, or even a thought.

Most of the time, you don’t have to rip the puppet strings away. Most of the time, with the simple act of noticing and holding compassion for your self, the puppet strings will go slack.


My new Manifesto For Visual Fine Artists is all about making sure you have the tools you need to discover whatever puppet strings are operating behind the scenes in your art career that are keeping you from the full satisfaction of success.

The Entire Manifesto Is Ready For You

My plan is to use this Sunday Series of Blog Posts to tease out sections of the manifesto and illuminate, ruminate, and expand, but I can’t do this alone.

I need my intrepid artists, the ones who find a resonance with exploring how we can all step so fully into our own creative flow that the collective consciousness of humanity also wakes up and steps into its collective creative flow.

If you would like a copy of the entire Manifesto For Visual Fine Artists, click here.

I want to hear … no, I need to hear about the principles you believe will take you closer and closer to the visionary summit of the truth and power in your art.

So, please… Tell me….

The Next Step

I have been coaching visual artists on their career path to Visionary Affluence since 2004.

That’s the ten-year minimum it takes to master any skill—not to say I’ve actually mastered anything. Just letting you know I have logged the 10,000 hours it takes to run fast enough, flap your wings hard enough, and leap high enough to discover whether or not you can fly.

And what I can tell you is how remarkable the view is from 10,000 hours above the creative landscape.  I can spot enclaves of my artists as they sit ‘round mythical campfires at different levels of the Mt. Olympus climb to their dreams.

Leaning into the smell of a wood fire, these artists – intrepid visionaries every one – share their experiences with each other. A hawk cries out and circles overhead as the mountain range frames a bold streak of sunset sky deepening to blood red.

I invite you to join your fellow artists, and me, under the emerging stars of your own visions, where the expansive beauty of the horizon calls out, the fire is warm, and the truth of your heart is irresistible!

Your Truth – Your Power – Your Art

Click here to get your download.

And I’ll keep you posted on the exciting new events, webinars, trainings, books, and successful artist interviews I’m mapping out as we climb this dream summit together.

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