Art Business or Art Career?

January 16, 2017

Which is it? Is there a difference? I am a big believer in continuing education. I attended a seminar recently that asked this big question and rightly so. Not many artists are willing to ask this question to themselves. Is it critical? Yes. Does it apply to all artists? No, certainly not all artists but definitely artists that are trying to become full-time revenue generators. I'm in this boat. Every dime that enters my bank account comes from art creation, it has for the last three years. Yet I'm always seeking more information about how to refine my business. That's the important distinction. This is a business not a career. I think I confused those terms for a long time. I'm more interested in selling my art than winning prizes. However not all artists have those goals, which is perfectly okay. I know that there are many artists that want to make a living at selling their art. I think that if they changed their point of view and how they approach their art selling strategies that they would most likely see a change in their day to day actions. What is your goal? To sell art or to be in galleries or shows? Which one is closer to you living off your own art? Our present age of internet technology has shifted the power from galleries to artists. Take it from me. I've sold far more art on my own than I have in galleries. Not to say galleries haven't done their part to sell my work but lets face it galleries have multiple artists they need sell. I only have one I need to sell, my own. Yet artists are captivated with the romantic dream of never having to sell their own work merely create it. That my friends is a very romantic dream but not as romantic as being in control of your own dream. What if I told you it was 100% possible for you to live full time off your own art and keep 100% the profits? Would you rather give 50% to someone else to do that work still? Perhaps I may seem like a rebel or ungrateful for the work of galleries. I've never been one to go with the flow of normal business. I absolutely would prefer to do things on my own. Perhaps that is what makes entrepreneurs the best artists and artists the best entrepreneurs. If you are reading this and you are an artist in your early career I hope you will consider my advice.

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