The Best Advice I've Ever Received Regarding My Art Business

Hey there art friend,

A few weeks ago, I shared some of the worst advice I have ever received as an artist trying to build consistent income from my work. After taking some time to think about it, I want to share with you the actual best advice I’ve gotten and how it's played out in my art business. This is what I tell new artists who come to me and this is what I would tell the younger version of myself if I were able to go back in time.

The best advice I’ve ever received as an artist entrepreneur is really two parts.

1) Figure out what you want.

Sometimes this is harder than it seems. There have been times in my life when I knew exactly what I wanted. In high school, I knew I wanted to go to a good college and get a degree in graphic design.

But as I get older it's not always so obvious. I have to work a little harder to figure out what I want, and the way I like to do that is through writing, specifically morning pages. In case you haven’t heard of morning pages, it's a practice taught by Julia Cameron in the book The Artist’s Way, which is a great book by the way.

Morning pages are a practice of getting up first thing in the morning and brain-dumping three pages of writing. This is really just stream-of-consciousness writing. The only objective is to fill those three pages. What I find is that after a few days or weeks of writing those pages I’m able to find clarity. Sometimes I’ll go into writing my pages with a question like “What do I want?” and see what happens. Eventually I’ll have an answer to that question, or at least enough of an answer to move forward.

2) Find a mentor who is already doing what you want.

After you know what you want, or at least have some idea what you want, is to find a mentor who is already doing it. Find somebody who is where you want to be. I know this sounds kind of grand, and sometimes it is, but this works on all scales.

For example, when I was struggling in my art practice to find a style that felt like mine I found an instructor who taught exactly that and I was able to settle into my style within three months of working with him. I’m sure I could’ve figured that out on my own, but it would’ve been much harder.

Likewise, I have sought out mentorship from artists who are just a few steps ahead of me in their businesses and also from specialists when I wanted to do everything from building an educational program to understanding the finances of my business. I simply understand the value of learning from other people when I can so I don’t waste precious time figuring things out on my own that have already been figured out before.

That’s why, even at this point in my career, I still invest heavily in education every year. Whether that’s books, courses, or individual mentorship, investing in help from people who know how to do what I want to do has been the best advice I have received on my journey.

I already mentioned I offer a program to help emerging artists build their art businesses, but I also offer a really great free resource for building your audience. This is the first place I think all artists need to focus once they’re ready to start selling their work. Check it out here.

All my best,


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