To be an artist, one has to continue to learn, grow and evolve their craft. It is only when we commit to this learning experience, do we get to create art that is meaningful and poignant. On your way to becoming a successful artist, you have the opportunity to interact with plenty of potential clients who can become recurring ones and learn a great deal in the process.
I know, I have…
Therefore, in this blog, I would like to share all the lessons that I have learnt over the years being an Artepreneur and dealing with clients and collectors. These points will range from essential business lessons to personal boundaries. So, have a read:
- Actively listen to what your client wants!
When being commissioned for a particular artwork, it is crucial for you to listen closely and intently to what your client wants. Make notes, draw rough sketches to share with them to ensure you are understanding exactly what they are looking for. Listening is an essential skill for any professional, however for an artist it can be a matter of incorrectly interpreting someone’s creative vision resulting in lost time, money and effort.
- Stop trying to be perfect
Perfectionism might be the biggest obstacle that we all face on our way to creating something or even just being productive. Trying to be perfect is often our subconscious way of justifying our procrastination and getting stuck in our own head. We take refuge in our research and “planning phase” of the creative project instead of actually doing it and delivering what the client is looking for.
A blank canvas or page is a very intimidating sight for many, as it beckons us to express ourselves on it and we are afraid to tarnish its blank beauty with an idea that we might consider half baked. We have to let go of this idea that everything that we create needs to appeal to the masses or should be deserving of critical acclaim or should have the ideal conditions to start creating. We should just focus on finding the bridge between what our client is looking for and how our skillset can match that.
- Personal Boundaries makes for good art
I know, I know… You have invested all your time and effort into this craft and business, the desire for it to get off the ground is immense. So, you spend every waking moment obsessing over every single detail and idea of the commissioned artwork to the point that you are spending countless hours working and never really finding the time to destress and recharge.
You know, what that does?
You end up burnt out and with zero motivation for not only your art but also your family and friends. Therefore, have boundaries between your work and your personal life, it is only when you have this clear healthy divide, you are able consistently create and have the energy to face all kinds of professional challenges.
Yes, asking for help can be the most vulnerable thing to do when you are a perfectionist like I am. However, the fact remains that you can’t do everything yourself. It is literally impossible. If you are struggling or facing a challenge with the work that a client has put forward because of a knowledge or skill gap, then ask for help. I am sure there are plenty of people and resources out there to assist you. Also, at a certain point in the growth of your business, consider hiring people who can be delegated with tasks that are a time suck for you. Conserve your time and energy for things that actually matter to you and your growing business.
And with that, we have some of the lessons from clients and collectors that I keep reminding myself in order to keep my Art business flourishing and my creativity charged up. Before I end this blog, I want to leave you with this: take everything life and business throws at you, as a learning opportunity. It is when we readjust our mindset like this, we will always have plenty of useful lessons to learn.
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Check my digital artwork collection here.