Saturday, June 25, 2011

Artistic Suicide

I wonder - how many truly successful artists there are out there. Let's define artist as someone who makes a one of a kind product to sell. Let's define success as an income capable of supporting a person: some sort of shelter that at least has insulation; enough food to not be "starving;" enough money to invest back into their career, like buying a laptop, painting supplies, or a pencil perhaps; health insurance would be nice.

To make money selling something that you have created there are two requirements. First, you have to be making something that people want - a lot of people. Second, you have to be able to make enough of it, get it out there, and sell it. This does not come easily to anyone. Few might be so genius either creatively or in the marketing department that they find Easy Street. But for the vast majority we have to work... hard.... forever.

There are further complications with making and selling art. Artists can't sustain their creativity in a constant linear direction. We get something good going and then the muses withdraw their support and send you hurling into another direction of unexplored creativity. Try to sell THIS now. The muses don't stand a chance against THE ECONOMY. We are trying to sell the most superfluous product of human existence; adornment. You can't eat it, drink it, live in it, or even smoke it. When THE ECONOMY has spoken, all artists listen.

The artist's greatest challenge is to find their way through the pitfalls to thrive, create, SELL, defy the muses and THE ECONOMY.

All of this said, I will not be deterred and I personally know dozens of others who have chosen this path. Give your artist a hug. Or even better, buy art.

1 comment:

Shasta said...

I lifts my inner soul to see an artist that has "made it" but I'm sure it's a constant uphill battle to produce let alone the overwhelming task of marketing. I myself clam up at the mere thought of money, I feel rude discussing the price on my creations and in most cases are reluctant to even let my pieces go. I put so much of myself into a peice it's almost like trying to sell one of my pets, you wonder if they are going to take care of it and love it as much as you did? THIS in my interpretation is what the buyers have to understand of artists...we may seem weird and "Artsy" (another code word for weird) but in reality we just get extra excited about things that inspire our inner connection to whatever we find beautiful and our completed expressions are more than just a carbon copy of production, but an extention of part of who we are.