By Carrie Williams:
Does an artist have a choice to live any other life other than freelance? What are the characteristics of an artist? An artist is often reclusive and difficult for the average person to relate to. An artist often hates his work. Oddly, that hinders his chances to become successful because for one to get a career they need to be confident in their skills and market themselves. So how does an artist get work these days?
In today’s world, the artist can become a photographer, graphic artist or web developer. As a student of graphic design or animation, it is often expected that the student can draw by hand. However, those drawings aren’t often sold, but used as inspiration for digital forms to be used on the web. These days, art is about practicality, used for advertising or interior design as if all art movements have already happened: we make reproductions of historically meaningful paintings like Guernica, post photographs of the Taj Majal, but are not often willing to pay large amounts for local art.
A portrait photographer is another option for today’s artist. Historically, the royal and wealthy used to get paintings done of their family and pets done by hired artists. However, today it is likely that someone takes their own family portrait with a digital camera, makes prints and mails them off to their relatives, hangs them up in the house, but rarely do they want to pay an artist to do it. One has to have the best equipment and resources their service appeals to those who have the money and the time to hire a photographer.
Drawing and painting is inspiring, but rarely does it bring in a salary. Art can express how one person sees the world and what is on their mind. When words don’t come, art or photography is the result. As they say, a picture is worth 1000 words. Abstract drawings, or even poetry can express emotions that can’t find any other outlet. These representations can then touch people if they find the correct audience. Otherwise, I think sometimes the art one produces can’t be understood. The appeal of graphic novels and comics is often only to a cult or small group of people that appreciate that particular style and humor.
It is important for the artist in the modern world to be able to apply their skills in a practical way that reaches out to the average Joe. They have to find a venue for the art such as a local art show, or have a portfolio and market themselves to local businesses. They need to be creative in the way they post their work. Artists and writers need to have a target audience. For example, one can choose to reach out to children through children’s books. One can appeal to a consumer by designing a simple but attractive logo for a company. If one really wants to apply their talents in this world, it must not only be a representation of their tastes, but appeal to the tastes of others.
An artist can keep this as a hobby and pursue other jobs more readily available. People don’t really need art to survive do they? But some of us do. It is the way we express our emotions through a medium other than pure conversation.