Oh my goddess you guys, I feel all sunshine n rainbows over how many holiday portrait commissions I got this year! I did just about twice what I did last year! That is so huge for such a small biz artist like me!! Can you tell I'm bursting?!?!?!!!
I'm really pleased to be at the point where I get somewhat regular sales, with pretty busy holidays, but am nowhere near quitting my side hustle (yet!).
I know it's kind of weird for artists to talk openly about financials, but I always wonder how other creatives are doing. Like, for example, does the bottom line currently match the output on some of these prolific artists that seem to be everywhere at once? Right now, mine does not, but I'm okay with that because I'm consistently getting more and more eyes on my work all the time so it's worth it to keep working, producing and creating. Right now, my only goal is to show my pencil portraits (as well as my oil paintings) to as many people as possible, and to let the pieces fall where they may.
Quality and consistency are the keys to getting recognized as an artist so as long as I keep those things up to the best of my ability I am fully confident in a future as a career artist. I remind myself that patience is a virtue and just keep painting. Like my super inspirational, documentary film-making, popular ukulele band front man uncle said to me many years ago, "Well someone has to make it as an artist. Why not let that be you?"
Of course you can ask any artist and they will probably agree that self promotion can be the hardest thing to do, but it's the only way to 'make it.' Like I told a few classrooms of highschoolers when I went in to talk about being a professional artist, "If you don't get excited about your work, no one else will. Pump it up!"
I guess my ultimate goal this year (aside from the worksheet I shared last week) will to be a continuation of that desire to just have as many people see my work, and hopefully decide to connect with me, as possible. And I'll be looking our for other artists to reach out and connect or collab with too!
So cheers to a New Year with new connections and new eyes on my work! And cheers to you, dear reader, for joining me on the ride!
originally published January 7, 2017