It's true...the life of an artist is full of creativity, exploration and fulfillment. But it also can be full of hard work, frustration and at times, disappointment.
Don't get me wrong, I love being a full time, professional artist. Each day I get to create my visions onto canvas, I blog, I post to social media, I write about my art and create courses and I also sell my artwork.
I'm living the dream!
BUT, and it's a big but, the constant stress of trying to bring in enough income to not just sustain my art practice but also to pay the mortgage, buy food and pay bills can get wearing and at times, down-right frustrating.
The phrase 'the starving artist' didn't come about by accident. Artists have always struggled to make a living from just selling art.
According to statistics in 2016 most artists live below the poverty line. Sad but true.
I have been hosting Open Studios for about three years now and I'm always amazed that the public doesn't know that artists usually have to pay to exhibit their work in exhibitions, whether it be a local show or the Florence Biennale.
Or that when a gallery sells their work they have to pay 40-50% commission to the gallery and that when an artist enters a prize award they have to pay a fee, perhaps as much as $40 per artwork.
People that I have spoken to are genuinely horrified when they learn these facts.
Artists have to pay for everything and yet they are often the first to be asked to donate an artwork to a charity auction, and many do.
It's why I believe that artists should be paid well for their work and to do that they need to know their own value.
Are there days when I feel like giving up? You bet! What keeps me going? The passion to create and the knowledge that I have something to give to others through my art and writing.
So yes, while being an artist helps keep me sane, there are some days the struggle just drives me crazy lol!
Perhaps you have ways that help keep you on track and inspired? Feel free to share in the comments box.
PS If you're interested, I have a free class available on 'Setting Up a Home based Studio, click Here.