Do you have a reclusive artist who shies away from people and hides behind a canvas or a pad of paper in your home? Do they insist that everything they do isn’t good, good enough, or just stupid? You may have an artist in your home who could spread joy, happiness, and beauty to the world and the only thing they need is a small kick in the ass. Be that ass-kicking that they need and push your reclusive artist out of the nest and into the world. You’ll be happier, their customers will be happier, and though they may complain about it sometimes, they’ll be happier.
In 2008, I was a student at the University of Colorado graduating with a degree in humanities with a focus on late-modernity when I met Carrie. She liked how I played piano and I liked how she could draw pictures, but she could do more than draw. Carrie had the ability to draw and paint better than the artists I was studying in college and, when my mother saw how she could draw, she knew that Carrie’s art needed to get out there. After we moved to Oregon in 2012, I pushed her to sell art at the Salem Saturday Market and Might Fly began. This section of the blog "Drawing on Experience" is here to talk about art, ideas, and DIY topics to help you or that artist who should be out there!
First-things-first, the flaws your artist sees in their work (but you don’t notice until they do or pretend you notice to placate them) are not deal-breakers for being a successful artist. While artists may be able to get together and pick apart their piece for how they apply their brush-strokes, your customers are looking to make their home or office beautiful, to support someone who expresses ideas and values they care about, to have something that brings them pleasure or fun and exciting conversation. Carrie had such a fear that everyone would see every mistake or flaw in her art and I sat next to her while she prepared to jury for the market and remember she was convinced she was going to be rejected. I did what any supportive husband would do and reminded her of this scene from family guy:
Be supportive of their art, confront their strange phobias, and help them accept that they can grow with their fans and collectors. If you show your confidence in their ability and take steps to help them get out there to their collectors, you will find it a rewarding experience and the opportunity to do something wonderful for your partner, for your community, and for yourself.
Behind every great artist is a sane person. I am that person.
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