In school we are taught how to create a strong body of work. A body of work that communicates the artist’s vision, intent, or ideas on a particular subject or issue. However, is this enough to go out there, be confident, and become successful?
I have had the opportunity to speak to BFA students on life after a college degree. This invitation was due to the fact that these schools understand the importance of building a program that not only encompasses skill building, but also the power of networking and getting your work out there for people to see. A question that is constantly lingering is how do I get my work out there? The answer will vary upon the artist’s needs. What I can tell you is that in order to get exposure, to begin developing a support system, to create your own art market, and (feel free to add your list here) is to start at the beginning.
The only person that knows what you need as an artist is YOU. You need to put yourself in the driver’s seat and begin planning your course of action. This course of action will take time to develop while identifying your personal inventory. It is important to navigate through this process with honesty, realistic goal setting, reflection, and patience. Success is not built overnight, but rather over a long period of time. It is important to build a strong foundation and continuously maintain the course of action you have created.
The above illustration is a model that I have been using for the past few years. I do, however, would like to point out that this model is not something I made up, but rather modified to fit my personal and artistic needs. It has enabled me to make decisions that are relevant to my practice as a gallery owner, educator and artist. In today’s art world artists have to maintain the balance with a business sense , promotional plan, creativity and innovation.
Next time you receive great news take a deep breath and figure out how to effectively communicate it with others versus screaming at the top of the hill hoping everyone will listen. Get their attention. Own it.