Art Psych 101

Raw From The Road, August 9, 2016

Art Psych 101

I always did something I was a little not ready to do. I think that’s how you grow.

When there’s that moment of ‘Wow, I’m not really sure I can do this,’

and you push through those moments, that’s when you have a breakthrough. 

Marissa Mayer


Photo: From the USC 125th Anniversary Book, “Rendezvous With Light
by Carole Muske Dukes and Robbie Kreinces (Kaye)

(I took this photo while attending USC as an undergraduate at age 43)

Why do artists have the stigma of being not so great at business or selling their work?

For many years I have searched my own psychology for the answer to this and here’s what I’ve got so far:

The process of creating makes me feel alive.

Feeling alive and thinking about what I actually need to be alive are two completely different things.

It takes no money, no things… Just the simple act of creative mind expansion feeds the soul… but, not the stomach.

The very act of creating is so fulfilling, like an aphrodisiac, it’s easy to be lured into thinking that nothing else is needed, which in my opinion, is why many artists are “financially starving.”

We get high on the creative process itself and forget about all the “other” stuff.

To date, I haven’t been financially successful at my art but if success were measured solely by utter fulfillment and joy I’d be a multi-millionaire.

However, there are bills to pay and responsibilities, which explains my quest to learn about business, marketing and sales… better late than never.

I work with an art business coach and attend conferences to learn the ropes, I watch videos, listen to podcasts and read books… sort of my version of an MBA.

I empathize with other artists or anyone who wants to make money at what they love to do, a natural desire

As I’ve written in the past, I come from the conditioning, “pay your dues, start small, struggle before you make it, etc. etc. etc.”

I’ve talked about the myriad of jobs I’ve had to support my artistry, whether it was music or photography.

I wish I knew at an earlier age that I was going to need to business skills.

But that was not the case. I’m glad I get to learn now and encourage any artists that may be reading this to do the same.

There is so much information out there now and lots of opportunity to learn, without a lot of cost.

Time to break the barrier AND that age-old stereo-type.  What will the world do when the majority of artists are amazing business entrepreneurs… business savvy AND creative.

Let’s find out!

Be BOLD and tread lightly… all at the same time!



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