We Get to Choose Our Own Success Path in Art

Hey there. You know what?

The old art world that we grew up with, those of us who went to school got degrees, BFA and MFA. That world is gone. The world they taught us about when we were in college, it doesn’t exist anymore.

You know the one where there’s  really only two ways you can make a living, a successful career out of art. Either you get in a gallery or you teach. Just those two choices.

The truth is that now there are more art worlds than just one. There are multiple art worlds and the gatekeepers are gone.

We don’t have to make that either-or decision anymore. In fact, we get to choose at this point.

I’ve chosen my own path. In fact, this is my office for the day. So this is the art world that I’ve chosen. This is the way I’ve defined success for myself.

What are you going to choose? What path are you going to take? Which art world are you going to participate in?

We all get to make our own decision and our own choices. There are lots of different choices out there at this point, so don’t wait around.

Don’t procrastinate. Start before you’re ready.

So I am out on Tybee island and going to spend the afternoon out here, painting in the sunshine and a beautiful, cool breeze. It’s gorgeous here in Savannah, on Tybee this afternoon.

So I hope that you can figure out what your idea of success is and that it fits you as well as mine fits me. Remember, each one of us can have a different choice, a different path that we want to take, but unless we choose, unless we make a conscious decision, we’re just wandering.

We can choose. There’s not a single person out there who can’t.

The best time to get started is right now. Start before you’re ready. You got it. That’s my mantra. Y’all need to start now. 

I don’t want to pretend that painting on the beach is not work as well. I’ve got a lot of that sunscreen too, but it is not the same thing as working in cubicle land or having a boss that tells me what I need to do from nine to five. I’m independent. I get to make my own decisions about when I start, when I stopped, what I paint, what I do, and I want that for each of y’all as well.

You want to be on that beach. Well, you can be. You have to figure out what the steps are that you need to take so that this could become your office as well. 

So get that plan going. Get it unfolding. Think about where you want to be and what you want to do. Don’t wait and don’t procrastinate.

Start before you’re ready.

You get to choose.

We get to choose our own success path.

Here’s what I’ve chosen.

My office for the afternoon.

What do you want to choose?

Get the tools and processes to map out your own painting career success path in THE PAINTER’S PATH.

3 Signs That It’s Time To Start A Daily Painting Practice

3 Signs That It’s Time To Start A Daily Painting Practice

There are 3 signs that I see over and over again that are a sure fire indicator that it’s time to start a daily painting practice.

The first is not making time to paint because of being overwhelmed by an already full schedule.

The second is feeling trapped in the details and the idea of perfection.

And the third is when an artist’s work looks like it’s been painted by 10 different people. There’s no consistent style.

So what’s the magic bullet?

The answer to all three lies in a relatively simple practice – painting every day.

Painting for 20-30 minutes a day can make a huge difference.

The rewards…

1. Your work improves

2. You stay motivated because ideas flow easily

3. Small daily steps move you closer to your goals

4. Muscle memory takes over and the difficult things become easier

5. You paint faster with more ease

6. You paint more intuitively and responsively rather than consciously

7. Your own personal style will develop without your even having to thing about it

If you’d like to grow the painting habit …FAST …
Then join The ART+WORK+LIVING 5 Day Painting Challenge starting April 25th.

Join my free ART+WORK+LIVING facebook group and get involved in our community of artists of all mediums, styles, and stages. This space provides a reflective and supportive space for all artists, including you! 

Click here to join and start getting engaged with artists just like you! 

What Artists REALLY Want

What Artists REALLY Want

I spent a week at one of my favorite conferences at the beginning of the month – a marketing conference but so much more.

One of the things that we were challenged to think about was how we define success…

And that got me thinking about how we as artists define success.

I don’t think it’s quite what people think.

So much more than just getting into a gallery or making money from painting…

You can narrow down the things most artists REALLY want to just three. And the main one is to make paintings they love.

I go over the other two as well in today’s video.

You know what!

The best way to make fantastic paintings is to paint regularly.

Forming the painting habit is so much easier when you’re surrounded by other artists who’re working towards the same goal!

When you’re an ART+WORK+LIVING Community member, community, support, training, and resources is exactly what you get. 

Becoming an ART+WORK+LIVING Community member is your access to me, Mary Gilkerson. You'll also gain access to an amazing community of artists, along with resources that my AWL team has designed to serve artists just like you. Our specialty is pushing artists to the next level of success in a positive and supportive environment. 

Click here to learn more about what my membership can offer you!

How to Decide What to Paint

How to Decide What to Paint

Hey there.

I had a conversation with one of my students this week that I just had to share because it’s one I’ve had with so many students, so I think maybe you’ll be able to relate.

What she asked me about was finding something to paint that inspired her. She was really struggling with that. She was looking for the perfect spot, the perfect place. If you ever done that, the trouble is there is no such thing as the perfect spot.

Have you ever watched a whole bunch of plein air painters at a paint out? All rushing around trying to find the prime place to paint. In reality, the best place to paint is the place where you are right now.

Don’t wait around for the perfect spot or the perfect photograph. The perfect fill-in-the-blank with whatever.

Instead, try this, what’s right in front of you. Most of the time you don’t need to go find that perfect spot or need to find the perfect subject. You just need to paint. So instead of looking for inspiration somewhere else, look right in front of you. Look and see what’s right there. Don’t wait for perfection. Just get started.

Avoid the predictable, and counteract the expected. You want to avoid the predictable. What I mean by that is that you don’t want to do the cliched subject. You want to do something that is a little bit different and that might mean that you take a different perspective. You get up above it; you get below it; you get from a funky angle; you look at it in a little bit different way; or you get up close to it or you pull way far back away from it, but you avoid the stereotypical view of it.

The other thing that you can do is to make sure that where ever you are you’re looking for interesting value patterns, because you can find that in the most mundane subject. In fact, I’m going to show you. I have just a mason jar sitting here on the table. You could make an interesting painting of that mason jar as long as you look for interesting value relationships, interesting value and color patterns.

It’s not just the subject matter; it’s what you do with it. And think about how those value patterns and the color masses are created by the light. When you do that, you can make anything look interesting because truth of the matter is everything is interesting.

It’s the attention you pay to it that makes it interesting. You can paint whatever is around you. And those of you who are my course, Catch the Light, let me turn just a little bit. You’ll recognize the edge of that building and the streetlight that’s right up there because that’s one of the modules in the course.

So it doesn’t have to be something grand, something elaborate, or something extraordinarily outstanding. You can make it that just by what you do with it.

When you’re an ART+WORK+LIVING Community member, community, support, training, and resources is exactly what you get. 

Becoming an ART+WORK+LIVING Community member is your access to me, Mary Gilkerson. You'll also gain access to an amazing community of artists, along with resources that my AWL team has designed to serve artists just like you. Our specialty is pushing artists to the next level of success in a positive and supportive environment. 

Click here to learn more about what my membership can offer you!

What’s the Secret to Becoming a Successful Artist?

What’s the Secret to Becoming a Successful Artist?

What do we mean by being a success in art?

The key to that question is knowing what success means to you. You can’t create a success path unless you know what success means for you. Otherwise you won’t have any idea of where you’re going or how to get there.

So let’s dive in and look at what goes into creating a success path that’s in alignment for you.

Know your why and don’t be afraid to own it!

Forming the painting habit is so much easier when you’re surrounded by other artists who’re working towards the same goal!

It only happens a few times a year – the ART+WORK+LIVING 5 Day Painting Challenge. 

Join us for FREE to discover how you can paint more quickly and confidently in just 5 days.

The Challenge starts April 25th!

Three Myths About Being Successful As An Artist

Three Myths About Being Successful As An Artist

 
There are three keys to consistently making art that you love, that feeds your soul, as well as having an impact on the world.

So in order to have that sustained, sustainable, creative practice, you need to build a solid painting practice. You need to develop an engaged audience and you need to nurture a sustainable creative mindset.

I talked about the first a good bit last week.

The second is what I’m going to talk about today, and that is to build an engaged audience.

I’m going to be focusing entirely on that engaged audience component.

There are three myths about being successful as an artist that I want to debunk because they lead directly to a lot of people not being able to do that.