An Artist's Dilemma
I knew an artist who was part of a group called the "Starving artists". He would come to us many times, pushing his oil paintings so he could feed his family. I thought of him as very gifted, but sadly, as good as he was, he barely made money to survive. So, there is this dilemma that artists face. How do we balance our passion and business practicality?
Do we just paint, or do we paint to sell? Of course art is big business, and this we know based on news what's what, and who is selling for how much in the global and local art market scene. I have sold some of my work, and i have had mixed feelings about it. As an artist i would rather spend my time finding inspiration, by looking for subjects of interest to paint. I need quiet moments, perhaps a nature stroll to be able to produce work. The satisfaction of the whole creative process, from conception to the final outcome is more than sufficient. I feel content that i have expressed myself, be it in whimsical childishness, or with deeper conviction, requires no ones' approval. I feel this my license as an artist, to have such freedom.
I feel blessed to come so far, yet i know there's so much more to this art journey that i am able to see. I have a handful of die hard fans, my husband, daughter and community who celebrate who i am. My heart is filled with gratitude for everyone.
I want to continue to evolve, and learn more. I have great appreciaition for my fellow artists, especially those i work closely with, such as the ones in my art class. I am learning so much from them, not some technique, but why they are artists. I feel very privileged to be a student to a wonderful man, Joe Dowson, one of Hawaii's beloved artist. I don't just admire his work, as incredible as they are. I love the artist who at 86 is a treasury of wisdom, wit and charm.
The artist takes a risk in some ways. He paints because he has a passion for what he's doing, then he faces a dilemma. After 'birthing' his creation, what to do. he must ask himself, why did i spend so much time, effort, pouring myself, my soul, toiling for hours, days, and years, to give it away for a price?
Painting vs Selling
There are many famous artists who actually experienced the same fate of waiting, even changing careers. The fact is, many renowned and so called Masters did not live to see their impact in the world, nor their millions worth. It may be a totally different ballgame now, thanks to technology. We see a universe, a huge platform, producing a new breed of electronic artists. Who knows where we will find the next Masters. I have a feeling, they are right in our midst!
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