Saturday, February 28, 2015

Changing paths

On Friday I stepped down from my full time job and am taking on the role of full time artist.  Its not been a simple decision and there has been a lot of planning for lifestyle and financial changes that has gone into making this bold move.

Its interesting to note people's reactions to the move.  Many think that I'm retiring and others believe that 'artist' means I will have lots of free time and can do what I want all day, paint when I want and what I want and generally have a good time.  Its that same old belief that rears its head when asked what you do for a living and when you say "artist" the response is something along the lines of "Great, and what do you really do for a job?" 

Where does the idea come from that creating art is easier and less credible than any other job on the planet? The job of an artist is no different than any other job in terms of responsibilities. You have to get up, go to the studio and paint - whether you want to or not. The difference is that you work for yourself, not for someone else.  That ups the responsibility because only you are accountable for making it succeed.  Only you are responsible for ensuring cash flow, visibility, branding, marketing, production - every department.   And only you are responsible for its success or failure.

So if I lounge around all day and do whatever I want, I'm ensuring the failure of my art business.  If I work hard and follow my art business plan, it still may fail, but I will know that there were factors outside my control that contributed to its failure.

There are incentives to succeed both internally and externally.  They are the best motivation to succeed.