Which art supplies to use for your skill level
3. How is Your Final Presentation? Professional artists know that each painting is not complete until the final presentation has been perfected. They also do not wait until a painting is finished to think about how it will look on a wall.
If you attend enough art shows, you will see that professional artists do not stick to standard canvas or paper sizes. They may not even use traditional surfaces. This is because the substrate - it's size, shape, and texture - has been carefully selected for that particular piece of art. If you frame your pieces, custom framing for odd sized works
Many amateur painters will toss a painting into a frame as an afterthought with little consideration for how it works with the piece. Pros, on the other hand, choose framing (and mats, if needed) very carefully so nothing detracts from the painting.
Also, keep in mind that frames are not always necessary. You will notice that many professional paintings that have that 'WOW' factor are deep canvas mounts that hang bare on the wall. Professionals always paint the edges, too.
4. Have You Developed a Style? When you have figured out your medium of choice, explored subject matter, and learned how to professionally finish your paintings, the next step is to develop a personal style. What makes your paintings different from every other painting out there? Are your paintings cohesive as a body of work, or are you all over the place?
Personal style comes with technique, medium, and subject and tends to develop naturally over time. Style does not mean that you are painting the same thing over and over or using the same color palette on every canvas. It refers to the look and feel of your paintings. Can someone identify your work as yours just from seeing an image on line?
5. What is Your Motivation?
Every artist, both professional and amateur, has their own motivation. In general, we all love to do what we do and we get a satisfaction out of creating. For the professional artist, it goes beyond that.
Some artists wish to convey a deep message in every painting. Others simply hope to make a living doing what they love. Yet, all professional artists know that they have to create and they will do whatever they need to keep doing that.
On the opposite side, many amateur artists wait for inspiration to come. If they are not in the mood, they do not bother looking at the canvas. They may even stop painting if another activity pops up in their day. (caveat: ill health or family crises are honest distractions.)
Professional artists are constantly looking for inspiration for the next painting. They also know that the next painting will be better than the last one and that there is always room for improvement. This excites them.
6. Are You Active in the Art Community? Art can be a very solitary life, filled with hours and weeks alone in the studio. Yet every good artist knows that they must get out in the world at some point. That is, after all, where inspiration comes from.
If you are shy or new to the scene, attend art events and stand in the shadows to watch how other artists interact. Introduce yourself to painters you admire or come up with small talk to get a conversation started.
Successful artists know that their success does not just depend on the quality of their work or how affordable it is, or their marketing skills. Personality plays a large role in the art community and with buyers as well. The more interesting you are, the better your art is received. Many artists struggle with this and are natural introverts but they learn to become more outgoing over time.
7. Are You Ready to View Art as Your Career? Professional artists have a certain work ethic. It doesn't matter if their art is a full-time career or a part-time endeavor after their day job, they still understand that art is work and they treat it as such.
There is much more to being a professional artist than simply creating great art that people will buy. This means that artists must market themselves and show their work in galleries, museums, and at art fairs. They need to complete applications and proposals, price their work and manage costs, and plan every element that goes into each of those pieces of the puzzle. Inventory management as well as maintaining an email list and website add to the long list of responsibilities.
Why? Because if you don't sell your work you do not have the money to make more art!
This is the reality of the professional artist and it is not the easiest path in life. Many run into obstacles and yet they often find large and small amounts of success to keep them motivated.
8. Are You Ready to Become a Pro?
There is a misconception that the life of a professional artist is either wild and crazy or cold and hungry. Neither of those is completely accurate and no two artists are the same. Don’t fall into the black or white trap; you can make your life anything you want it to be.
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