The last few weeks in the life of Gabrielle have been quite eventful. The last time I wrote on here (06 Nov 2018) I talked about leaving my full time (cushy) studio job at an ad agency to become an independent entrepreneur. It’s been 1 month since I’ve been on my own and its safe to say that things have been extremely hard. For the entirety of 2018 I lived with my mom and her husband, I was starting my transition then and she had offered to take care of me in case things got crazy with my body. The first few months of HRT your body can react to the changes in strange ways and it could lead to hospitalisation if not looked after properly. The year progressed and I met a wonderful girl who I feel in love with; she came over to South Africa to live with me and brought her 1 year old daughter with… 2018 in summary seems like a super strange and eventful year, specially because the girl I fell in love with lived in Chile at the time and we met over Instagram.
Currently I’ve moved out of my mom’s house and live in an apartment with my girlfriend and daughter. I took the month of January to create content for my alternative apparel brand SurReal. SurReal is great in that I can let my imagination flow and create whatever I want, the problem with that is that it needs to sell and be profitable. So far the store has 9 different designs; 30 days have passed and I’ve made a total of $12. Selling shit is hard! Sometimes I think about all of the expenses that people have in their daily lives; all of the debit orders they have and subscriptions they’ve made to online services and entertainment. I think about all of that consumerism and wonder. . . why the fuck would anyone buy my shit? But then I remember the daily messages that I receive from Instagram followers encouraging me on and commenting on how much they love my work. Its like this extremely frustrating thing; almost like someone is dangling a big gold prize infront of me and I’m at arm’s length from it but there is something holding me back; there is something that isn’t letting me grab it. The most frustrating part is that I don’t know what that thing is. I understand that brands take months, years to build and form customer bases; its just extremely hard to constantly produce content that doesn’t sell. I will not give up though! I’ve scheduled in 3 additional designs for the month of February and I will keep SurReal alive until it becomes profitable.. . . it has to.
The next step on becoming a successful independent artist is having a booming Patreon. Patreon is a platform that allows followers to pay their favourite artists in order to view their content. I’ve been creating content for this Patreon seemingly for years now; stuff that has been locked up in my super secret vaults for months upon months. The issue with that is that most of that stuff is pornographic in nature. I am a highly sexual person, I was even more sexual before my transition, most of these hidden pieces are from back then. I’ve been pondering on whether I should open up access to those works on my Patreon and make a name for myself as a Hentai Artist. The thing is. . . I feel that if I get too deep into that world I will never be able to climb back out. Like once I start becoming known for creating lewd and dirty art I won’t be taken seriously anymore. This is why I’m thinking about segmenting my Patreon into 3 parts; a third Horror Art, a third Hentai and a third Clean Pin-Ups and whatever stuff I put on my IG. I also want the pornography art to focus around empowering trans women and LGBT / alternative people. It will all be created from the mind of a trans woman so I have a feeling that it will be incredibly unique to anything else that is out there.
In closing; YES! My life has gotten extremely busy and difficult and I didn’t even talk about my personal day to day life (I’ll leave that for another Weekly happenings post), however I am enjoying life a hell of a lot more than I was a year ago (stuck at a studio job). I hope that you all will stick it out with me regardless, that you’ll strap in for the ride and that you’ll keep supporting my work!
Please check out the SurReal store HERE you might like something.
Stay tuned for the launch of my Patreon at the beginning of March.
Peace, love and hugs!