Thursday, July 10, 2008

Doing the Work

I have just gotten a fun little article done for Fibre and Stitch magazine for the next issue. It is about making your own rubber stamps so I had fun making more and stamping fabric.

My goodness, my last entry has sparked a lot of commentary. I was chastised for not posting the piece directly on the lists (primarily the SAQA list) rather than sending people to my blog to read it. I just felt it was a little long for the list. Oh well.

The responses have been really interesting. There were feelings that I gave short shrift to "artists" but the purpose of the entire thing was to alert some people to the fact that becoming a professional artist, one who is making art their business, takes a lot of time, not just making the art but in doing the marketing. This fact seemed to get lost with a lot of people.

At not time did I intend to suggest that one way is better than the other. Only that in order to become a business, it takes a lot of time and energy.

There were a couple of comments about family members who had their own business and how much dedication and time it took. That is what I am talking about. Anytime you are self-employed, it is all on you.

I also didn't say that I was able to do all of the things I listed all of the time, either! I flake out, I space out, I play too much solitaire when I can't think straight, I am certainly not the picture of a professional artist.

However, I am working at getting more organized in the business sense and getting my responses in to calls for proposals for shows. I have also submitted portfolios for two calls for commissions from the Alameda County Public Arts program and am searching through other calls for those that are appropriate.

I have really enjoyed the thoughtful responses to my comments! Thank you all!

Now, back to critiquing my class work and getting some facings sewn down.


Casey said...

You are absolutely spot on. Once you decide to make money from your art, you become a business. If you expect to make a living in the arts, any of the arts, you have to realize this. Business means sales, marketing, accounting, the works. Who wouldn't love to paint when you wanted and have the masses come running to purchase? Unfortunately, we have to live in the real world. :)

frazzledsugarplummum said...

I agree with Casey. I thought the article was well considered. I had a wholeale/retail florist for many years and while I would have loved to concentrate solely on the creative side, financially it wasn't possible. I had a number of staff so that wasn't a problem. It did mean that I was the Jill of all trades. Accounts, marketing, packing, ordering supplies, unpacking, advertising, travelling, staying up with the industry, customer service, cleaning buckets on and on. Your article covered everything. It is also tiring and at times disspirating but that is the whole package, in the real world. The good from all that is you bring even more lateral thinking to your creative work. Well done and thank you for it....