As artist entrepreneurs, the biggest mistake we can make is to do nothing. To shut ourselves off, to not try, to stay on the sideline. It’s easy to become paralyzed as a solo artist entrepreneur. This has been a common theme in my recent conversations with artists about their art business: “I just don’t know what I’m doing.”
And I want to tell you, that’s okay! No one has it all figured out. The artists you see rocking it and experiencing lots of success weren’t overnight successes. They were sweating in the trenches, laying the groundwork long before their name became known.
The best advice we can receive is to go for it, learn from our failures, and improve everyday. The overused Wayne Gretzky quote comes to mind, “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.”
If you start taking steps forward in your art business, the outcome is unknown. You may succeed, you may fail. The only certain outcome is if you don’t take a step…you can be certain NOTHING will happen.
I cringe every time I hear an artist say, “I’m waiting UNTIL I finish more artworks, UNTIL I get a website, UNTIL I fill-in-the-blank”.
Sit down and write out what you want your art business to look like in 6 months. Where do you want to be?
Then talk with some artist friends you admire and figure out what essential steps you need to take today to get where you want to be in 6 months. Maybe you need to get your artwork photographed, submit your work to gallery shows, get your artwork up for sale online, start growing an email list, make the scary phone calls.
Whatever it is, make a plan. Write out how you’re going to execute your plan step-by-step. And then go for it.
You’ll likely experience some successes and some failures and you will definitely grow. Seek out failure. The more you fail, the more you learn. That is the secret successful artists have learned…failure is your friend because it helps you learn what works and what doesn’t.
We all start at essentially the same starting line. The only way toward your vision is to put yourself out there even before you know whether you’ll succeed or not.
My challenge to you: Ask yourself if what you’re doing with your art matters to you. Is it worth it? If your answer is yes, then that settles it. It’s worth trying even with the risk of failure. You can silence that voice asking why you’re even trying.
Is selling more art online part of your plan?
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