I was in a terrible mood when I started this doodle but then I thought I could film it and make a short movie. By the end of the project I was completely buzzing and was doing something I’d never done before. My brother give me a couple of his old tracks to use and it took on another direction. Its not an amazing film but doing something creative when you’re in a shit mood is a great way of turning it into something productive and of course, getting out of that bad mood.
I always thought selling my work was a sign that it was as good as I wanted it to be. After taking a new direction and looking closely at my reasons I can see that that I was very naive.
Ever since I discovered I could draw really well (aged 12) I dived into it and it become my favourite occupation. Art helped me get through a relatively unproductive time at school (one CSE in art) and it seemed an obvious choice to become a graphic designer. So I went to college to study graphic design like all the other people that were good at art but have no idea what to do with their lives.
I always wanted to be an artist and sell my work. I’ve only ever sold two peices (over 20 years) and viewed myself as a bit of a failure. I just wasn’t good enough at art. I do however love making pictures, images, art etc and have lots of pictures hanging in my friends houses. People really like them but I can’t sell them. So its my skill of a marketer and salesman that’s rubbish, not as an artist.
I wrote this post because one of the first things people ask if you say your an artist is have you sold anything. Unless you’re doing it as a profession does it matter? You see people at art and craft fairs sat behind their oil paintings hoping, praying that someone will show some interest. Is the quality of the work up for judgement or is the quality of marketing.
If you want to make a living from being an artist get some good marketing and sales advice.If being an artist is just making stuff you love then what does it matter if you sell anything. And if it does matter maybe like I was, you’re looking for validation in the wrong place.