I love Goals! Love them so much the word is capitalized.
But. Before we go into goals for 2016, here’s what I feel good about in 2016.
I’m starting month six of this full-time-artist experiment, and my natural instinct is to feel like most of what I’ve done is a failure. I still don’t have a style. I feel like my abilities haven't gotten a ton better. Blah blah blah. This isn’t a pity parade. It’s the usual stuff us artists feel. This is also background information so that you can understand that despite all of that, I feel like a rock star for having survived the past five months. I feel amazing about 2015. Because the past five months have taught me how poorly suited I am for self employment. Horribly suited. I thrive on third party deadlines and expectations. With third party expectations I am a pro. (Wait, let’s capitalize this for important emphasis: a PRO.) But not so much on my own. Different skill set completely. I have spent five months in an isolation chamber. Can you imagine if at your day job, for five months no one talked to you about your work nor did anyone ever offer any feedback whatsoever. It’s like that...but with endless cookies near bye and unlimited smoke breaks. So the fact that I’ve gotten any painting done let alone drawing let alone exercising the past five months feels like a huge feat. Sure, the bar is low, but even sometimes low bars are hard to get above.
1. Learned a lot about how I work.
The learning curve of being my own boss is and remains steep. Despite learning a ton, I know there is a lot more learning ahead of me. I’ve learned that despite being a small h hoarder, my physical space is connected to my mental space in a real and tangible way. If I’m frustrated in the studio, my first question before anything is, “Do you need to pick up your work space?” I’m guessing that 85% of the time the answer is a loud and frustrated YES. My anger has nothing to do with what’s happening on the canvas and everything to do with the fact that my elbows keep knocking down paint bottles stacked near bye.
That knowledge is a big deal, and well worth five months to unearth. It has launched some large space overhauls and the getting rid of bags of unneeded crap to make more space to breath. I went from zero surfaces to surfaces with only plants on them. For. The Win.
2. Haven’t gone crazy or become a miserable partner.
“Wait, following your dream isn’t pure bliss?”
No. No it’s not. And that’s a whole other blog post.
But the important thing is that I still have my sanity and maybe even some optimism for the future.
Those are the two reasons I feel really good about the last five months. So now let’s set the bar a bit higher for 2016.
1. Establish daily art habits.
For example: Wake up. Gym. Drawing (face). Painting. Photographing. Studio clean up. Repeat.
2. Open an etsy store.
I have these concerns: A)My paintings vary wildly in style, and B)My paintings are crap. Both may or may not be true, but either way, I want to get into the habit of photographing my work and putting it up on etsy. There are new skills to be learned there, and I will only learn them by doing them.
3. Create a budget and track expenses.
4. Read six art related books.
Even though I finished it in 2015, I’m totally counting Big Magic. Also, I’ll probably reread it in 2016.
I love writing and social media. I always think of blogging as a means to an art end, but instead I’ve realized that I love those things in addition to the art. The fact that it can aid my art life is a bonus.
6. Update website
Good images of work up. Possible redesign. What do you feel good about from 2015? What are your goals for 2016?
7. Participate in a 30 day challenge.
And meet some other artists in the process!