Sunday, June 10, 2007
Blondheim Art Original Landscape Painting
Paynes Prairie State Park
casein on panel
Yesterday I had such a good time at my Studio Picnic!!! I was surprised at the steady crowd all day. Since it is summer, I had doubts that people would come but they did. I had people from Vero beach Florida to Valdosta Georgia. They came in groups of 1-6 people and as they left, others would arrive shortly after. That is the best way for me to spend time with friends. The stars of the day were my painting puzzles. What fun we had!! People had puzzles all over the studio, putting them together and then choosing their favorites to take home. Of course they all said they were for their children or grand children but I know better. These folks were having a grand time with them. I got an email later from a friend who had decided she may have to keep them and would I be making more soon? They cleaned me out! Now you know what I will be making this summer while it is hot outside.
The hot dog, baked beans and potato salad were a big hit too. Just right for a summer meal.
I have made some goals for myself in terms of marketing my art and am on a five year plan. Who knows if I will be successful? There are no guarantees. When you are forming plans and goals you must first understand what specifically you really expect and want to achieve. It is not enough to say, "I want to be financially independent" or say "I want to sell my paintings." First you must understand what your comfort level allows and what you genuinely feel will bring you a sense of happiness and satisfaction, while paying your bills. We all want to sell our paintings and secretly wish for a patron(s) with an open checkbook. A very few find that kind of patronage, while the rest of us look on with envy.
I don't think you will know what course to take until you figure out what you really want. Are your goals realistic or pie in the sky? I've had more than my share of that pie, believe me. Take a good hard look at what you really want and then try to find the way to set a course.
At one time I thought I wanted to be a gallery person. I tried for a year or two and discovered that I hated being a shop keeper. I felt totally confined and had difficulty keeping my painting schedule. It just wasn't really right for me. I did not like keeping retail hours. I moved my studio to a building behind my house and have been as happy as a clam ever since. My artist friends all scoffed and said that people would never come out here 15 miles form the city on a dirt road, but they do! They love coming out to visit and I have far more visitors than I did in a retail space. They come because I make their time here special, like the honored guests that they are.
Yes, I made a mistake and did not succeed in a retail space, but I learned something about what I am really comfortable with, so it was worth the mistake.
Take some time to figure out what you really want and need for success before you make your plan and consider that your wants and needs will change as you go along. I think one to five year goals are more realistic than ten or more.