art

7 Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Be Afraid to Become an Artist

I’m writing this more for myself. It seems like the more I pursue my art career, the more opportunities open up, and the more daunting it becomes. As I’ve said in the past, I’m personally struggling with a very odd Fear of Success (versus the fear of failure. Only instead of not trying because you’re afraid of failing, you don’t want to try because you’re afraid you’ll succeed and can’t handle it). but if you guys think this list is helpful to you too, then that makes me happy! Let’s all go through this journey together!

1. The Internet

Today is probably the best time ever in the history of art to become an artist and make money and recognition in your lifetime! Back in the olden days, you had to be lucky and make friends with a rich person who really really REALLY believed in your work enough to pay you a full salary to sponsor your work. Otherwise, in the less recent time, you had to push to get your art exhibited in galleries (I highly recommend you still go this route for reasons I will explain in a future blog post, but for now, let’s be excited about the internet) where you have to pay a fee for them to show your work and if you are lucky enough to sell any, most of that money will just go back to the gallery. Putting your art in galleries may actually LOSE you more money than you gain.

Now, you can post your art for free, and if you keep at fostering your social media presence, you will eventually gain a following which will put you in contact with people who want to buy your art. Yes, you do have to compete with other artists, but you may forget that this is not a zero-sum gain. Just because one artist gets a commission doesn’t mean you don’t get that commission. You can also make passive income by selling digital prints, eBooks, Patreon, and numerous other places. With the internet, it’s difficult to put all your eggs in one basket, and that’s a good thing!

2. Whatever You Love Doing: There’s a Niche for It

Art is one of the most frustrating things to go into as a profession because what’s “In” in the art world changes so drastically. When I brought my sketchbook to a Portland gallery, the gallery owner noted I did a lot of figure drawings, and those just weren’t “in” right now.

Read my previous point. If you build a following on the internet, it doesn’t matter. Someone will like what you’re doing.

Not only that, but there are infinite numbers of communities for what you’re doing. Even if what you’re doing is purely original, which is unlikely because humans are bad at being original, you will find a niche.

If you like painting waterscapes and fish, fishermen will probably want your art, if your faith is important to you, you automatically have an audience of people in your faith who are probably DYING for the kind of things you create, if you love painting cats and dogs, you have a lot of people out there who love their pets and would be delighted to have you paint a portrait of their beloved Sir Colonel Fluffikins III.

So Fluffy

And yes, I know I sound like a broken record when I say “Do What You Love” but I mean it. If you’re working on something because you think that’s what’s “in” right now, you’re not going to care that much about it. When you try to sell it, you’re not going to have that same enthusiasm and conviction that makes people want to buy it (if you don’t care, why should I?), and you’re just going to be frustrated.

So, do what you love. It’s not as hard to find people interested as you might think.

3. You Don’t Even Need to Be Good- At Least, Not Right Away

I believed that before I had any business pursuing a career as an artist, I thought I had to be good. I don’t even know why I thought this, because there are many teenagers out there on the internet who are already making a living making videos of their art and pride themselves on how they’re learning, and simply want to be an amazing artist when they grow up- as they should!

The truth is, a good artist should always be learning. As a general rule of thumb, I found that no artist believes they’re really “good.”

Not only that, but look back at history. The most remembered artists of the 20th century didn’t create the most beautiful, realistic artwork, their expertise lay with creating a strong message behind the artwork, shaking hands with the right people, and marketing.

So, it doesn’t matter if you’re good, as long as you keep at it, love what you’re doing, and do the necessary research along the way, you’ll be fine. You may not get rich, but that’s not the goal, the goal is to be an artist and make enough to get by.

4. There’s Parts of it That Might Suck… Just Like the Job You’re Currently Working Now!

You’re smart enough to know that once someone becomes an artist, there’s a whole lot of challenges to face along the way and after the fact: keeping a business going, deadlines, customer relations, taxes, and there even might be viscous and jealous competing artists. This may be what’s keeping you from pursuing your dream as an artist, that these may be things you don’t want to deal with.

As opposed to be the job you might be working at now, you’re working for someone else, they may be malevolent and send you home every day with this feeling like you’re not worth anything, the work you’re doing is soul-killing and not doing any good for the world, maybe even making it worse, and it may be affecting your attitude, your family may find you unpleasant every time you come home from work, and things will only continue to get worse.

As opposed to working for yourself- you may not make as much money- but you’ll at least have the chance to do something you know is meaningful. You will come to the end of your life not having regretted doing what you really love.

5. Even If You Don’t Make it As an Artist, You Will STILL Pick Up Skills that Job Seekers Like

I do not advocate dropping everything and starving yourself to be an artist. It’s good to have a fallback plan. Take comfort in knowing that not only do you have one, but by following your dream, you will be even more equipped, proficient… and desired, in said fall back plan.

I actually want to write more on this topic, but one of the things that keeps me going, even though I’m still new, is all the skills I’m learning along the way to reaching my dream of being a stay-at-home artist.

I thought of the skills I was learning that jobs seekers wanted: utilizing social media through a business perspective, waking at 5 am to work on my art career before going to my 9-5 job, customer relations, setting and keeping deadlines, sales, photo editing, marketing, website development, etc. Many of these were not skills that I learned how to do in school or at other jobs, but they were skills that I learned while pursuing my own art career.

It’s easy to think that it may not be worth it in the end to become an artist professionally, that you’ll be spending so much time and money on art, no one will want to buy it, and it will all amount to nothing.

Not so.

Even if you make art that nobody buys, you will learn many other skills and develop habits that will be attractive for future job seekers.

6. You Will Fail… A Lot

The reason why I personally don’t have a fear of failure anymore is because I I know I will fail… many many times.

You will fail to make the masterpiece you want, you will fail to make online sales, you will fail to get the number of followers/subscribers you want, you will enter that Call for Artists, and you will fail to get in. You will fail many many MANY times. And that’s okay. I know, it’s still discouraging when something doesn’t work out, but that’s part of the journey of becoming an artist.

With every failure, you will learn something, the next time you try something, you will approach it a wiser person.

It’s also satisfying to know that you are not a quitter. That the world is out to get you, and knocked you down so many times. Just to spite it, you got back up and kept going. Nothing will keep you down!

Pictured: You.

You are a warrior! You’re a lion! You’re a Viking!

You’re not afraid.

That tingling feeling in your nerves… that’s excitement. You’re going to go back out there and fight! Everyone will see how impassioned you are, and they will either cheer loudly with you and follow you to victory… or out of fear, they will get out of your way.

7. It Takes Time, but It’s So Worth It. And Fulfilling

Becoming an artist is not something that happens overnight. It takes a lot of time. You’ll find shortcuts along the way, but for now, what you have is a cute little baby snowball.

You keep packing a little snow here and there, and it’ll get bigger. You roll it down a hill, and it will start to spiral and get so big you don’t know what to do with it (which is why I’m writing this blog post right now).

I know that ever since I decided to dedicate a minimum of 30 minutes every day to my art, I go to my day job feeling happier and more fulfilled. I have a sense of purpose and understanding of who I am because of my ambitions and goals that I dedicate a little time every day too. I am more resilient, less anxious, and stronger because of the habits that I spent the last several months accumulating. Because I actively look for things in other peoples’ art that I like- and used my art to build a philosophy of focusing more on creating the world you love instead of tearing down the one you hate- I am much less introverted and enjoy being around people more.

I like the person I am. Especially since I decided that I was no longer going to be afraid to be the artist I want to be.

Now go out and be the artist you want to be!

Advertisements
Uncategorized

7 Day Lazy Challenge: Day 2

For Day 1, click here. If you want to know exactly what this is, click here.

Today was a much rougher start in comparison to yesterday. Even though this time I got an extra hour of sleep, it was difficult to wake up, and when I did, I was very slow and groggy. I woke up in a middle of a terrifying dream, so I guess it wasn’t all bad waking up when I did.

The coffee also wasn’t ready so while I waited, I ate my hard boiled eggs, I drew up some abstract shapes and sketches in preparation for a future painting. I did not start the timer at this time, this was more of a warm-up.

Instead of getting to work on my art, my body was trying to do everything BUT that- cleaning, playing on my phone, looking at art on Instagram (which I’m supposed to do every day anyway, but not right at that moment).

Spending 30 minutes on art felt daunting to me, so I instead split my time into two 15-minute increments. This was significantly less daunting.

As a result, this morning felt very productive. I didn’t have the attention span to sit down and do a drawing for 30 minutes, so instead, I worked on some of my paintings.

A painting of the Merchantman from the game Star Citizen. It’s for my husband’s office at work!

After spending 15 minutes on my husband’s painting, I varnished the Springtime (or Young Couple on a Swing) painting:

The varnishing did not take as long as I thought it would, I still had about 9 minutes left on the timer, so I worked a little bit on the painting in my portrait series.

And since I’m using the Forest app as my timer/motivation/distraction killer, here is a screenshot of my “forest” for the past two days since I started this challenge. It’s not much, but it’s nice to see that forest as an extra tangible sense of accomplishment:

The tree represents the 30 minutes I spent focusing yesterday. Two of the bushes are for 15 minute increments today, and two of the other bushes were just me testing the app. They’re still cute though!

My Takeaway

If I didn’t have a quick and easy breakfast set up on Day 0, a set-up workspace, the Alarmy app, and the Forest app, I don’t think there’s any way I could have gotten through this morning.

Another thing was that instead of working on one big thing, I opted to work on a bunch of quick, little things-which is good- because really that’s all a big project is, just a series a little increments put together. I finished one painting, am really close to finishing another, and making progress on a third. Even though I spent the same amount of time than yesterday, I feel a bigger sense of accomplishment today.

Uncategorized

7 Day Lazy Challenge: Day 1

Day 1 of the Lazy Challenge was a success! I was able to wake up at 5 am with no problems (my body may have tried to sleep through my alarm though, but thankfully my husband was there to wake me up). When I set my alarm the night before and saw how little sleep I’d be getting, there were two things that I had going for me. 1) My husband wanted to wake up and go to work early today, so that was some extra motivation and 2) I made a deal with myself: if I did my 30 minute obligation and STILL wanted to go back to sleep, I could take a nap right after breakfast.

Having everything prepared well in advance made the ordeal much less daunting.

I was really surprised how well this first day went. Usually when I try to change my sleep schedule, it takes me about four days to adjust. This morning though, that was not the case.

I was really groggy when I first woke up, obviously, so to get myself going, I started by washing my face with cold water, brushing my teeth, and brushing my hair. These were little tasks that I felt minor accomplishment when completing (and yes, the cold water helped), but it gave me the momentum I needed to get to everything else.

The artwork itself was a bit challenging. Instead of drawing something in my sketchbook with a standard pencil, I drew using white colored pencil on colored paper. This is a subversion from my usual sketching habits. I think this helped push my brain, but maybe for the first day next time, I might start something a little less strenuous.

Welp. This was supposed to be a quick thing, but I’ll see you guys tomorrow! Hopefully tomorrow will be as easy as today, but I highly doubt it.

Uncategorized

7 Day Lazy Challenge

Or… “How to be Lazy and Accomplished at the Same Time.”

I thought 7 Day Lazy Challenge sounded catchier than the 7 Day Productive Laziness challenge.

Let’s begin.

Due to excessive burnout at my full-time job, my art habits that I’ve worked so hard to foster kind of fell by the wayside. Before, I was waking up at 5 am every day, painting, and leaving for work without feeling rushed. Unfortunately, it’s been getting harder and harder to wake up and I’ve found myself going days without painting or drawing. In fact, I lost interest in doing so.

I took a week long staycation to help rest up and get myself on track, and while I was starting to feel like my old self and get art done, I still haven’t gotten quite back into my old, good habits. Although, 7 am is still a good time to wake up, even if it’s sleeping in for me.

For the past several months, I’ve been taking notes from College Info Geek and The Art of Manliness  to help find ways I could improve my motivation, stop procrastinating, and hopefully, turn my artistic passion into a part time job that makes enough money to pay bills. The advice I’ve been hearing is this: be lazy!

What does that mean? How can being lazy help you achieve your goals?

Think about it. If everybody didn’t have the proclivity to be lazy, we would all be working to our full potential, we probably would have had the flying car built centuries ago if more people used their free time to work hard, be productive, and achieve their dreams. Unfortunately, only a very few people in this world have the discipline to do so and even fewer succeed.

Look back on yourself, if you spent the time you’ve been playing video games or binge watching to learn new skills, improve yourself, or workout, I don’t have a doubt you would in a better place than where you are now!

But, again, humans are lazy. We would rather do easy and fun things than hard things for the unforeseeable, long term rewards improving our skills would give. We can clearly picture ourselves as more successful people (whatever your definition might be), but again and again we make excuses, procrastinate, and opt to do fun easy things instead.

That’s why it makes to rather than fight the urge to be lazy… we work with it! We make it super easy to get started on the things we want to do, and make the distractions less convenient!

Starting tomorrow, I plan to get up at 5 am paint for 30 minutes, and write a short blog post in order to report on my progress!

Day 0: Preparation!

Day 0 is very important. It requires a little bit of self reflection… and this actually the day where you’re not lazy: you’re getting breakfasts ready, you’re getting your work space ready, you’re finding ways to stay comfortable, and you’re eliminating your distractions.

1. Have your alarm ready!

How are you waking up in the morning? Do you hit the snooze button again and again until you have to leave for work/class five minutes before it actually starts? This would be a good time to think about how you would like to get up. There are several alarm apps out there that make you do things before the alarm goes off such as taking a certain number of steps, taking a picture, doing math problems, etc.

I do a combination of a couple things to get up early. I always put my phone on the other side of my room, and I have the app, Alarmy, on the setting where you have to take a photo before the noise turns off. I used to take a picture of my vitamins in the bathroom medicine cabinet so that I can start the day washing my face and brushing my teeth, but my body adapted so it was easier for me to take a picture, then go back to bed.

I changed my strategy to instead take a picture of the coffee maker so that I can instead be tempted by the smell of coffee (with the added benefit of the kitchen being a slightly longer walk than the bathroom) and start the day with the caffeine boost. So far, that’s been working for getting up at 7 am.

2. Make Breakfast(s)!

It’s important that whatever you want to do to achieve your goals, you start with a good breakfast. Even if you’re not hungry. There’s been a lot of studies done, and people are more effective in the morning, especially after eating a breakfast high in fat and protein.

For the laziness challenge, it’s better if you have breakfast all ready to go. Maybe you might want a nice, hot breakfast with fried eggs and bacon, but if you had the willpower to do that, you probably wouldn’t be reading this right now.

Today, I’m going to hard boil 14 eggs! Two for each day of the Laziness Challenge! Eggs are cheap, quick, and come pre-packaged by Mrs. Chicken. They are high in fat and protein which is what we’ll need to get the day started.

7 cans of Tuna could work too. Also cheap, also quick. Kinda smelly though.

Of course, you could have 7 yogurt cups, or, if you want to get REALLY fancy, make 7 cups of plain yogurt, fruit, and nuts/granola in some kind of container (recycled glass jars, cheap mason jars from IKEA, or plastic cups if you have a bunch leftover from a wedding you had… not because you hate the environment obviously…). Actually, after I do the 7 day challenge with hardboiled eggs, I might just do another 7 day challenge with daily yogurts! That sounds amazing right now!

And not to leave out the vegan artists either… though I don’t know much about the vegan diet. Avacados are probably your best bet with a lot of nuts/beans for protein.

3. Eliminate Excuses.

If there’s a reason the things you want to do are the slightest bit inconvenient, your body will do everything it can to put it off or not do it. For me, the biggest barrier is my studio. It’s pretty well ventilated, which means it’s very cold. Which means I would rather be anywhere but in there.

That is why I have a special jacket that I got from Target for cheap many years ago: it’s warm, but I don’t mind getting paint on it. I also have special sweatpants in there in case I need extra warmth for my legs.

The point is, try to find reasons why you “don’t” want to work and do anything you can to eliminate that excuse. You’re clever! You’ll find a solution!

4. Have your Materials Ready!

One of the reasons I think we don’t like improving our skills is because of how daunting it is. You have to get up, make breakfast, then open some books, or find the websites you need online. If you’re an artist, you have to make your way to the studio, grab your sketchbook, you might not even know what you want to draw. It’s just too much. It would be better to go back to bed…

…unless, you just had everything ready to go that morning already!

For art block…

If you’re up first thing in the morning, in theory all of your creative juices should be flowing in that river of grogginess (apparently, people are more creative when they’re groggy). If that turns out to be as ridiculous as that sounds, don’t worry! There are things to get you going.

An important part of art is practicing! Go online, find art tutorials (Have 7 tutorials bookmarked today! One for each day!)

I enjoy drawing using references from old master paintings, plus I have a couple paintings I want to do in the long term, so I went online, found paintings similar to the painting I want to create, and if I’m not feeling up for painting, I will have my sketchbook, pencils, etc set up and ready to go!

References? Check! Paper? Check! Pencils? Check!
If you’re doing something online…

…like learning a new language, learning to program, or anything else that requires the computer, I would highly recommend having your websites, YouTube tutorials, programs, etc, bookmarked or set as your home page or otherwise ready to go the night before.

What about social media sites, Netflix, or other fun sites that waste your time and prevent you from getting work done?

5. Limit your Distractions (especially if what you’re doing requires the computer)!

One site I’m looking is StayFocusd, which blocks websites you don’t want to be distracted by for a certain period of time.

There’s also a NUCLEAR OPTION, where you have a limited number of sites you do want to stay on, and it blocks all other sites.

I wish there was a version of Stayfocusd for YouTube channels. It would be nice if somebody could figure out a way to temporarily prevent you from watching YouTube channels except for the videos you’re watching to improve your skills. But, for now, we’ll stick to what we have.

Since my activity has nothing to do with the PC, I installed Forest which prevents me from using social media for a certain amount of time (which I will set to 30 minutes).

Forest work by giving you a virtual tree that grows the longer you leave your phone alone. If you want to use social media, you have to kill your tree first.

You don’t want to be a monster who kills trees.

Do you?

Ashley???

One of the nice things about this app is that the more these “trees” you grow, the bigger your forest gets. Seeing all those trees establishes a sense of pride and accomplishment… with more immediate rewards which we established earlier is something that we as humans love.

One downside is that while it blocks many sites including social media and games, it doesn’t block YouTube or in-phone texting. If you really want to be productive, especially for the first week, you may have delete your most distracting apps unless you really need them for work (which is unlikely, let’s be honest).

To Recap:

1. Wake Up Strategy

2. Breakfast Preparation

3. Get Comfortable

4. Get Your Materials Ready

5. Limit Distractions

Uncategorized

My Thoughts on Instagram (from someone Just Starting Out)

instagram-1581266_1920
Image from Pixabay

5 Things to Keep in Mind

1. Have a reason why. 

This goes beyond just “I want thousands of followers.” What do you value the most? What kind of message do you have that helped you has utility to others? There are things you will post that you posted at a bad time and it doesn’t get many likes.

For me, there’s two reasons why I’m doing this: 1) I want to create the most beautiful art I can and share it with the world. 2) This has the potential to help me develop professional and social skills that will be useful throughout my life. Becoming more popular should be secondary. Probably even tertiary.

Heck, the primary thing you should be doing is developing your art philosophy (I am currently not writing it down like I told myself I would). Why is art important to you? Why should others care about the kind of art you’re making? Once you have this written, and cemented down, it will be easy to continue making quality work that you love even if you don’t feel like it, and, thirdly, put it on Instagram and share your vision with your future followers.

2. Stay Consistent!

Post at least a couple times a week. If you don’t post for long periods at a time, you will lose your audience. Try to keep a consistent theme too. The most popular art Instagram accounts have one subject, one style, or something that makes them consistent so that the people who want to follow them always know what to expect. This is also a good motivator to keep yourself working on the best quality art you can.

This rule is a little disheartening to me because I like doing everything. Surrealism, still lifes, landscapes, fantasy, you name it. Even if my Instagram account will only focus on portraits, that doesn’t mean I can’t do the other genres too though. Allow your process to change gradually, rather than letting creative ADD take over and focus on portraits today, abstract tomorrow, and comic book art on Monday.

So, it does feel like selling out to focus on one thing, but I think my art has really suffered from my lack of focus. Instead of focusing on one thing I really really love, I let myself listen to what others in the art world thought too much and tried to make art based on that, then fall into chaos when it didn’t work.

3. Think of it as a long game

You might get lucky and get thousands of followers over night. You might get struck my lightening too. Don’t be discouraged if you post something and it doesn’t get many likes right away. It’s important to be patient and makes sure this takes time. We all live in a time where we want everything now and want instant gratification, but that doesn’t apply to Instagram. Even though it’s in the name. Instagram.

I’m particularly inspired by Simon Sinek’s speech here:

Every source I’ve researched from, and I’ve experienced this personally, says you need to reach out to other users, comment on their work, and try to make connections, then you will start to see your number of followers go up. If you have five more followers by the end of the week, that is still five more followers than what you had last week, which brings me to my fifth and final point:

4. Don’t compare yourself to others, instead compare yourself to what you were yesterday.

We’ve all heard the phrase, “Don’t compare yourself to others.” This phrase really never helped me, because there’s always artists better than me that I want to reach towards my own work reaching a higher quality. Also, we’re human beings. We’re competitive. We can’t help comparing ourselves to others. We want to beat our competition, and we get depressed when we find we can’t.

Until I read the book, “Twelve Rules for Life” by Jordan Peterson. It’s way too easy to see somebody succeed (especially if their art is not as good as ours), get discouraged and quit. By adding that second part, “Compare yourself to who you were yesterday” it adds an entirely new dynamic. It may impossible to compete with strangers online, but who can you compete with? Yourself. By keeping this in mind, I found myself excited when I hit 85 subscribers in just a few days after being stuck on 68 for months. Sure, it’s still a minuscule account, but it’s better than how it was before! As long as I work hard, It can only go up from here! Actually, if you just watched the Simon Sinek video. He said this exact same thing too!

I’ve even heard that after you reach 500 subscribers, the number skyrockets exponentially, so that’s something to look forward to.

 

5. But for goodness sake! Keep focusing on art!

Unfortunately, the deadly side effect of the addictive quality of Instagram is that it’s, well, addictive! The past couple weeks, there were many times I should have been drawing, practicing art, or working on completing a painting, or even applying for a different full time job, but all I wanted to do was check if I had more followers, likes, etc. Even now, there’s an old master copy in my studio I’ve been meaning to complete, but instead I’m writing a whole blog about Instagram while I still have less than 100 followers and therefore, have no right to give any advice on the matter.

Like I said though, I’m mostly writing this blog post for me to read once a month or so.

 

 

 

Uncategorized

Inspiration is Dumb

5364313611_4da921cff9_o
Image by William Ross

I was thinking today about my uncle who once told me that he paid an artist to make him a painting… two years prior to our conversation. Now, I understand a painting can take several years to work on, especially if you’re working in oils and have to wait significant periods of time before applying the next coat and whatnot, but no. My uncle has contacted this artist and the artist himself admitted that he hadn’t made significant progress on the painting because “he just wasn’t inspired.”

If I may backtrack a bit, it’s not inspiration itself that’s dumb. Inspiration is beautiful. It’s that harmonious, magical moment where you’re struck with the desire to create something. Few things are more beautiful than that. It’s waiting for inspiration that’s dumb. Unless you have unlimited leisure time to visit places like libraries or museums that give you said inspiration, chances are, inspiration doesn’t strike you often enough to the point where you’re producing as much art as you could.

You probably had several experiences in your life where you know you should probably develop a skill of some kind, make a video, write your novel, but the very idea of just sitting down and doing it is daunting. It’s rewarding once you actually worked on that project the results present themselves, but actually getting started, working on it, can be such a drag.

The unfortunate truth is that in order to create art, sometimes, you just have to sit down and do it.

I’ve been waking up at 4:30 am every weekday to spend thirty minutes on my painting. I hate it sometimes. There are times where I’m just too tired too not be confident enough to paint well, so instead, I focus on a simpler part of the painting, like the background or something that doesn’t require a whole lot of detail. I hate that stupid alarm that won’t turn off unless I get out of bed, then when I do, there’s no point in getting back to bed.  This has been happening for about a month now, and even though I don’t want to get up so early in the morning, art is so important, that’s it’s worth suffering for.

So, what should happen if you’re not inspired? I think more often than not, you’re not in a state  that allows for much inspiration. You may be stuck in a work routine that doesn’t allow much time to surround yourself with inspiration.

Instead of Waiting for Inspiration, Establish a “Why”

Inspiration is like your broke brother-in-law always promising to pay you back, but never doing so. Occasionally, Inspiration will rise to the challenge and make himself useful, but when you really need him for something, he’s just not there.

Instead of depending so much on this brother-in-law, you need to build your foundation through other means. Nietzsche said, “Any man who has a ‘Why’ can suffer any ‘How.'” Why are you doing art, exactly? Are you doing it for the beautiful results?  Or because you fear the fact that if you never do it, you will end up a failure? What’s your philosophy on art? Do you want to add beauty to this world, or do you have a message that needs sharing?

First and foremost, be willing to suffer.

Now that you’ve established your “Why,” it’s time to start suffering that “How.”

How important is art to you, really? Or anything for that matter? Are you willing to suffer for it? Are you willing to sacrifice some short time comfort for long-term results? Van Gogh, for example, suffered immensely for his art. You can argue he was crazy, but some things are worth going crazy for.

Be willing to sit down and do your art, even if you don’t want to in the moment. Accept that you hate it, but do it anyway. It’s better to fail, then not do it at all. Get up early, go for a ten minute walk first. If you’re not willing to love something enough to suffer for it, then what are you even doing?

Watch motivation and self improvement videos

Weirdly enough, I find watching workout motivation speeches on YouTube a really good source of non-inspiration. The same values echoed in those videos can be applied for art. The idea that you don’t want to work out can be applied to the fact that you don’t want to draw and paint, but you want the results, you want to build something to be proud of, only instead of your body, you’re building your portfolio.

So, my friends, go forth and suffer!