Desire to be a professional artist starts you on a journey with 3 distinct stages. Reaching the destination is easier when you have a map.
As a beginner artist, you're at a crossroad. To stay amatuer is a time-honoured state, chosen by many for the pure fun of it. Since you're reading this, though, your dream is for professional status.
The greatest artists who ever lived took the same path you face right now. They asked themselves the same questions. as you're asking now.
- What should I paint? How can I learn to do it? Will anyone like what I do? Can I sell my artwork?
Just imagine the teen-aged Leonardo or Michelangelo as they got up each morning. Too young to need a shave, peering at their pimply faces in the mirror, wondering if they should give up and get a regular job like their friends. Then they splashed cold water over their fears and set to work learning their craft and honing their skills. They persisted.
Famous artists of the current age may seem to have it easier than the youths we now call 'The Old Masters.' In times past, beginners spent long days slogging in their teacher's studio, grinding paints and preparing panels, while keeping their eyes and ears sharpened for painting tips.
In a world of digital cameras, smart phone technology and computer software to edit and even create images, today's artists still need the same discipline to learn their craft. They must persist in finding ways to bring their art to public notice. Above all, they must keep their work unique, so as to stand out against the background chatter of the merely fashionable.
- Looking back on a long career, I see the 3 stages needed to reach professional status.
Stage 1 begins with your four-word declaration: 'I am an artist.' Sounds simple enough? Yet this will be the most thrilling and terrifying moment of your professional life. It commits you to a life-long pursuit of the unattainable – 'perfection.'
Stage 2 requires you to knuckle down to learning your craft. Because talent is never enough, you need to learn the techniques that make an artwork evoke audience response. You also need to learn about art-making materials and tools.
Stage 3 demands that you find a way to exhibit your artwork to the public. You need to understand how the different types of galleries work and how to approach them. You need to find out how to write your resume and how to put together a portfolio.
- Every artist's journey is different but getting to the destination is easier if you follow this map.
1.Commit yourself to a career in Art.
2. Learn your craft.
3. Plan your approach to exhibiting.
- Discovering the steps and how to plan them in the right order is key to your success.©Dorothy Gauvin