Monday, January 2, 2012

2012, artists' resolutions, and artists who thrive

I have been reading some of the New Year posts of other artists and have been both impressed and encouraged. Impressed with the volume of work and different projects some artists seem to have accomplished in 2011 and encouraged by the generosity of others who share openly their experiences, challenges and hopes. In many ways, 2011 has been tough because of the economy, and weather related disasters. My family had some flooding from Irene in September. It took us over a month to clean up, but we were lucky- we did not loose our house. I feel incredibly lucky to have my art to 'practice' and have a way to be in the present. Alyson Stanfield, the art biz coach, strongly urged artists to make a list of their accomplishments, promising that they did more than they realized. It is easy to mentally list all the things I haven't done, and this must be universal or we wouldn't have New Year Resolutions! So, I am promising myself to continue some of the good things I began this year.
1- Stick to regular painting and writing schedule, and say no to activities that are detours from my work. I painted more in the last year than I did in the last three years and it has been wonderful. Nothing else like it.
2- Keep walking. Our car 'retired' itself in August and I walk to town to the post office, market, camera store, pet store, etc. I used to walk an hour every day until five years ago when family responsibilities grew. I feel better overall and the challenge will be to keep walking even when we get another car.
3- Learn as much about marketing my art as I need to thrive. I have written three e books for artists in the last year and a half. The first "Portfolio Handbook" grew out of lists and information I gave to students preparing for art college. The second, "Artist to Artist Handbook" is for artists at all levels of commitment and experience. The third e book, "Artists and Money" is about many of the ways artists seek a living with their talents and skills. Each e book is linked to resources on the web. I have been painting and teaching art for thirty years. I wish I had been more focused earlier with my art, but realize each artist's life experience is what makes them unique.
My wish for 2012 is that all artists have the energy and resources to do their work, and the ability to support themselves well.

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