Lessons I’ve learned being an artist….

Being an artist is not easy. I make this statement solely on the basis of any artist wishing to make a business out of their craft. With so many different types of artists, it can be rather difficult to get the attention you need to make a living. The great currency that any artist needs for success is attention. The more eyeballs viewing your work, the more potential you have to garner a fanbase. Easier said then done of course, but also now more easier to attain than ever before. You see, social media has made being an artist quite accessible for everyone who wishes to show their work. With the multitude of platforms at hand, there are a myriad of different ways an artist can create a following. And while there is an overwhelming abundance of online traffic, by curating engaging posts, you can greatly increase your chances of success. Over the last few years I’ve been lucky enough to be around many different types of artists, each with varying levels of success. These experiences have taught me alot, and have greatly impacted the way I conduct myself as an artist. Somewhere harsh lessons learned, while others were eye openers that have inspired me to follow suit.


1.) Great artists are constantly moving: One thing I’ve learned from being around some of the high profile artists of my city of Montreal, is that they are constantly moving forward. They always have projects being worked on, be it commissions, gallery exhibitions, print releases, murals to paint, festivals to attend. Great artists do not sit around waiting for things to happen, they are constantly evolving and growing. I’ve witnessed artists in my city complete large scale murals in one weeknd, only to catch a flight to another city to paint another one, and then head back home to get ready for an art exhibition. Great artists don’t sweat over trivial things, they realize that a great work ethic above anything else is what gets opportunities and eyeballs on their work.


2.) Succesful artists are not jealous : We all have that one moment. That moment when we see another artist garnering tons of praise for their work, work that we deem to be terrible. We scoff and reply “ Anyone can do that!!! “ in a jealous fit, wondering why our own art has not been lauded equally. Being jealous truly puts a damper on all that you have accomplished. Just because another artist has gotten praise for his or her work, does not mean you will not garner the same love and attention at some point. By allowing jealousy to control your emotions you are inviting negative energy into your life. Your reputation will become tarnished and people will take note of your jealous behaviour, not wanting to associate with you. The thing I notice with successful artists is that they are never jealous. They embrace other artists' success irregardless if they like that person's work or not. They realize that positivity breeds productivity, and rather than becoming jealous they focus their energy on manifesting more abundance for their careers.


3.) Entitlement....To be successful as an artist it takes years and years of hard work, and great artists know this. Of course everyone's idea of success may be different, but for most artists, doing art fulltime is the holy grail. Great artists never feel entitled, they know what it takes to achieve the success they want and never feel slighted when something does not work out the way they intended. I’ve learned from others that are prolific, to ALWAYS be working. Whether on your craft, marketing, or just forming relationships with other creatives, constant movement is crucial to getting your art in front of those that need to see it.


4.) Comparison, the thief of joy…. I have definitely compared myself to other artists in the past, and quickly realized that this is the fastest way to discredit everything you have going on. The artist I know never does this. And while they may show love and appreciation for another artist's style, they are seldom focused on what other artists are doing. This comes back to being secure in your own art while embracing everyone's uniqueness without comparison. The more you focus on your own craft, the more you will improve and gain more confidence in what you are doing.


These are just four examples of things I have learned over the years, that have helped me as I continue to become the best artist I can be. I hope that they can provide some value to anyone reading this! May we all continue to grow and help each other reach the levels of success we hope to accomplish….