Why I Teach Other Artists How to Earn A Living

Hey there art friend,

I want to talk about something today that is really important to me. There are no tips or methods in this post, but there might be a lesson on how to choose what’s right for you and how to follow your instincts in your own art career. At least I hope there is. Stick with me and I guess we’ll both find out together.

First, I want to say thank you for being here today. You could literally be reading a blog post on the best soups to cook this winter or watching a video on squirrel obstacle courses, so I appreciate that you chose to spend a few minutes with me.

At this point in my career, I have interviewed or talked to at least 200 artists. And when I tell them about the program I offer specifically to help artists grow their businesses, a lot of people pull back. They ask me why, if my art career is supposedly so successful, am I offering education?

And I get it. That is a totally valid question and one I have asked other artists who are also offering education. Do they actually make a living from their art? And if not, why would I listen to them?

I can’t speak for those other artists. I can only speak for myself. But here’s a little breakdown of how I got to where I am now: teaching business building skills to other artists.

First, when I was getting started as a professional artist there weren’t any courses that I knew of to teach you how to build your business. There were just other artists out there who looked like they knew what they were doing and looked like they were making a good living. But, in reality, I really had no idea how much money they were making. I tried to do some math based on how many sales I thought they were making and the people who were doing really great, I thought they were making around 50k. I figured if they were making 50k a year, I could at least make 25.

My plan was to supplement that income with another part-time job. But, shortly after I made the decision to start selling my art, I joined a year-long artist mastermind in which I was one of the newest artists in the group. Ultimately, I learned a LOT from those other artists and I found out some of them were making more like 50k or 100k or even 250k a year. Those women were as creative in growing their businesses as they were in creating their art. I spent a lot of time thinking about the fact that without that experience I would’ve had no clue what was possible for me. You just don’t know what you don’t know.

So the next two years my income goals grew from 25k to 50k a year. And then to 100k. It was exciting and challenging all at the same time. And once I got to that 100k point and beyond, I no longer felt the desire to push or grow my art sales. I’d reached a comfortable pace in my studio practice where I felt like I didn’t want to make more art in a given year or it might start to feel like a production line. I’d also reached a comfortable place with my prices.

But the reality of my situation is that I wanted to be contributing more to my family financially.

Knowing I was happy with the art side of my business, it took me a couple of years to figure out how exactly I wanted to grow in other areas of my business. I knew that I wanted to teach. My mom was a teacher and I spent a lot of time teaching art in my kid’s classrooms when they were little.

But, did I want to teach people how to make art? Did I want to teach kids or adults? Did I want to teach online or in person? I tried teaching a Skillshare class on my collage techniques just to dip my toes into that world. And I tried teaching some in-person classes. But neither of those things felt quite right. Ultimately it came back to that first experience I had with the mastermind. The way it had empowered me to claim a future I had always dreamed of but was too scared to make happen.

That was when I decided to create what is now my Palette to Profit program. Now that I’ve been at it for a while, I can honestly say that it is so incredibly rewarding watching the members of the program claim their own dreams and make all sorts of amazing things happen for themselves.

So back to the original question of why I offer education if I have a successful art career. It’s because I want more artists to have success. I want more people in the world inspired and passionate to be following their dreams and reaching their goals whatever those may be. And I love teaching. I love connecting with other artists inside the program. And this is turning out to be a beautiful compliment to my solitary art practice.

Thanks for being here. Until next time.

All my best, 


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