Today, during a group coaching session on Have Your Best Show, we talked about what our current thoughts about being an artist are.
Being an artist is like being a parent. It is all-encompassing. We manage our schedules, we manage our business, we manage studios and budgets, and materials...all in the name of creating.
Contrary to the popular stereotype of an artist lost in thought all day while standing in front of a canvas...always covered in paint [seriously, most of us really aren't that messy]...with no place to be and no cares in the world other than creating the one.single.piece - life as in artist IRL is quite a bit different.
We artists dive into the professional art world with big, bright, starry eyes, believing that life as a full-time artist will finally allow us time to make all the work we desire.
Then, we quickly learn that we are small business owners.
In order to keep making our work, we need to sell our work.
For some of us, this thought is exciting. And we set out to learn how to run small businesses along with making our art.
For others, we have thoughts like: Business is bad. I am overwhelmed. Selling a lot of art is selling out. Money is the root of all evil. I don't want to be a slave to money. I just want to make my art.
These thoughts are responsible for the "starving artist" mindset.
It doesn't have to be that way.
What if we artists believed that the work we create creates value for our collectors way above and beyond the money they give us for it?
What if we believed that our business's job was to create the connections for us to provide that value.
Neither good nor bad.
Our business is simply and beautifully, the vehicle to get our artwork into the world.
Let's spend a little time thinking about our businesses like this, instead of thinking about all the "have tos" and "shoulds" that creep into our day around sending email, posting on social, and documenting our work.
Let's remember that, like our artwork, WE are the creators of our businesses.
We have complete control over what we think about them, how we show up in them, and how we can design them to either work towards the results that we want, or stop us in our tracks.
Let's create businesses that allow us to create and make money so we can live the lives we want, continue to be inspired as a result, and provide a lifetime of value to our collectors.