The Starving Artist!

All my life I’ve been an Artist and an Entrepreneur. My first job as an illustrator happened in 6th grade. I hand painted Valentine’s day cards for my classmates…..they couldn’t believe I actually wanted money for them. At the time I was selling homemade brownies and chocolate chip cookies  during lunchtime…..I saw no difference. I had no idea Illustration existed as a career. But there I was pedaling my little watercolor originals…..fifteen years later I founded “Heavenly Greetings” my own line of cards.

As in any career or new beginning…..success takes time and hard work…..”seven years is the average for an illustrator,” I read somewhere……don’t know if it is true. What I know is you really have to be 90% business and 10% creative. And once you have your foot in the door you have to keep on knocking. Because believe me, somebody else will be there if you’re not.

So why is it so hard? Why does that cloud of “Starving Artist” loom over most creatives at some point in their careers? And as a freelance illustrator I can tell you the cloud walks hand in hand with procrastination. The greatest challenge is self-discipline and focus. Forget the laundry, soccer practice, the closet that needs reorganizing…….goals must be set to meet the deadlines.

With the invasion of technology, the illustration market has evolved into a different monster. Everything has changed from the execution of an image, it’s submission, to the self promotion of an illustrator. So At this point in my life, after years of experience (more than I like to admit), I’ve come to the conclusion that I need to reinvent, recreate and reeducate myself and my work. I have to get out of my comfort zone and stretch my brain cells.

Creating this blog is my first step out of Starvation!

3 responses

    • Thanks Alma! Illustration has been such a wonderful career. Financially it’s had it’s high and lows but there is a certain feeling of satisfaction that comes when you create something and then you see the final product and you are amazed to have been a part of it. That feeling is what keeps you going….looking for the next thing to do…..even when times are tough!

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