Many of you have been asking some amazing questions about my relationship with art that weren't expressed in my Artistic Journey blog post, so I wanted to create a new post to address them!
WHY ARE YOU AN ARTIST?
I have wanted to be a professional artist since I was in kindergarten. I always loved being able to create art for the sake of creating. It was a constant surprise that humans could start and, through art, connect with another person without words. As a youngster, I was always striving to capture emotion in my art so others could feel how I felt at that moment.
If you are interested in learning more, you can read my blog post about how I got started in the arts and my journey to becoming a studio artist.
WHERE DO YOU GET INSPIRATION FOR YOUR WORKS?
Most of my oil paintings are based on reference photographs my father or I have taken over the years. As a military child, I was privileged to have lived and traveled so many places around the United States and the world. I share more about my inspiration for individual works on my Instagram feed. Sometimes I list locations in item descriptions in my online shop. My abstract paintings are often inspired by color schemes and textures I encounter in the world. Some of my works are en Plein air, and my more minor works on paper are inspired by my physical nature collection (rocks, shells, feathers, etc.). Go to my oil painting faqs to see a list of artists that inspire me.
Regarding photography, I carry a camera almost everywhere. I am inspired at the moment and am not always sure what I am looking to capture. 95% of my photographs don't make the cut, but it's that 5% I hold out for. My photography is almost exclusively landscapes, seascapes, nature, and close-ups of items I thought were interesting. Go to my photography faqs to see a list of artists that inspire me.
All other works are either planned extensively from a concept, commissions based on a client's desires, or are spur-of-the-moment emotional endeavors. A few of my favorite mixed media works started as sketchbook page experiments that I later refined into a more significant piece.
I am constantly testing out new techniques and styles to grow myself creatively as an artist. You can follow my 2021 oil painting experimentation adventures on my blog.
WHO TAKES PHOTOS FOR YOUR SITE?
I take most of the photos for my website and social media accounts. For social media, I use my iPhone 12 Mini and my old iPhone SE for time-lapse videos. For my online shop, I photograph my work using a Sony a6300 before editing the photographs in photoshop.
Suppose I do not use one of my photos: in that case, the image is either stock footage, I attribute the photographer, or the photo was taken by friends/family and shared with their permission.
WHERE DO YOU GET INSPIRATION FOR YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA?
I am inspired by anyone who is sharing: artists, influencers, social media gurus, branding coaches, small business coaches, etc. I also follow marketing specials by art supply stores (i.e., Blick, Michaels, Jerry's Artarama) and Online Artwork News & Galleries (Artwork Archive, Saatchi Art, My Modern Met, Etc.). My Patreon Family lovingly gives me recommendations about what they are interested in seeing more of as well.
HOW DO YOU HARMONIZE CREATIVE AND BUSINESS WORK?
It is a constant struggle and juggling act to find balance. Every day is different, and plans change at a moment's notice. I have a schedule that ensures I hit all aspects of creative and business work that are loose enough to re-prioritize or re-schedule if needed. Some weeks it's more business; some weeks, it's more creating; other times, it's about 50/50.
I give myself internal deadlines that are always earlier than the actual deadline.
My loved ones are 100% on board with supporting me, and I often rely heavily on them for help.
Try to have one 3-to-14 day artist residency/fellowship a year away from everyday life distractions. It will help you and your art.
Make sure to schedule a time for taxes, annual goals, and monthly book-keeping in advance and early, so you are consistent with your business.
Habits and routines make it easier.