Monday, October 27, 2014

Four Hats Thriving Artist Wear

Want to be an accomplished artist? Wear these four hats.

To be an artist you must make art. Sounds like an obtuse statement; but you may be surprised at how many artists do not spend regular, consistent time creating. Here is how to ensure that you make art:
  • Schedule it. We make time for things that we plan to make time for. Put your art making time on your calendar. 
  • Go on Artist Dates. Julian Cameron in her brilliant book, The Artist Way, "The Artist Date is a once a week, festive,  solo expedition to explore that interest you." Carving out this time fires up your imagination which is what every artist needs to create.
Be a promoter and defender of your craft. Be active in your community of artists. Serve on the board for your state art council or join organizations dedicated to your art form. Your service to these organizations will enable you to:
  • Stay abreast of happenings in your industry. 
  • Be a part of a community. So often working as an artist can feel very isolating.
  • Be of service. You have to give to get. 
Share information about what you know best: how you create art. The public loves to hear about how artists do what they do. What inspires you? What is your creative process? Who do you admire in your field? Share these insights on your social media timelines. By sharing, you position yourself as knowledgeable (which you are!) and you become a resource.

Publish what you know. (You really do know a great deal!) Even if writing is not your gift,  you can publish. For example, if you are a photographer you could publish some of your pictures. If you are a dancer, you could share your audition horror stories.  Today there are a plethora of ways to get a byline, such as starting a blog or writing your own e-book.

Wear those four hats and you will create a fulfilling creative artist's life.


Renee Gadson said...

Although these steps to becoming a "thriving artist" appear to be common sense, they're not. It is very easy to get so caught up in the business end of our art, that we fail to schedule time to create. Thanks for the much needed reminder.

TAHIRA Akua TAHIRA said...

@Renee striking a balance wearing these four hats can be challenging. Thanks for commenting.

Karima Amin said...

As always, I enjoy hearing from you. This was a much welcomed reminder of what I need to do as a storyteller who hopes to share mo' stories for a long time. Reminders like this are vital as we continue to create AND manage the business of our craft. I read The Artist's Way by Julia Cameron many years ago. It's a resource worth citing.

Keep on , keepin' on, TAHIRA!

TAHIRA Akua TAHIRA said...

@KarimaAmin: ASA, Mama! After publishing each post I anxiously await your feedback. I appreciate your support and an affirmation!

Valerie said...

Love the reminders and the encouragement to consciously share what we know....through advocacy and publishing.
That said, I would add one more hat to the notion of being a "thriving" artist, and not the 'starving" artist, and that is understand the business of the art, and, do it well, or get someone who supports your work and vision to do it w/in support of you!

TAHIRA Akua TAHIRA said...

@Valerie I agree completely. Knowing the business side of your work is critical!