Eat Your Artistic Vegetables
Back in this post I came up with an analogy that practicing your craft is to being an artist what chopping and cutting vegetables is to being a chef. Simply put, you have to practice or to put it another way you have to eat your artistic vegetables. When I was editing that post I kept thinking about it because that was something I came up with on my own (yay for an original idea!) and I thought it should be something that we elaborate on.
EAT YOUR ARTISTIC VEGETABLES.
What are artistic vegetables? It is showing up day after or day, or whenever you can and practicing your craft. It is doing the work. It is sitting at your desk or work station and feeling frustrated, which I think perfectly illustrates the act of creating. Generally, I am proud of my work after I have finished it. But getting to the finishing part? That is hard. That is work. That is eating your artistic vegetables. I don’t know why we artists think we can go days, weeks, months, without practicing our craft and expect to produce great work. GREAT work gets produced when and after a lot of BAD work goes into the garbage. It can feel tedious. It can feel mundane. It can feel like a big waste of time creating your work but in order to get to the type of work you LOVE you have to eat your artistic vegetables.
The main goal of my blog is to inspire and encourage other artists and creatives to create their own art, regardless of financial gain. There are a lot of people out there that can tell you how to monetize a blog or how you can make thousands of dollars off an e-book or how to quit your day job and become a full time artist/painter/photographer/etc. I listen and consume a lot of that type of content, but at the end of the day I am going to be an artist regardless of whether it increases my bank account or not (for the record, it has been a small source of income). On my website you can find information about my photography services and recent photoshoots but my blog? It is ultimately just a lot of musings of mine when it comes to faith and creativity and how these two things interact. And they interact a LOT. Every act of creating is an act of faith. And to become an artist that creates stop-you-in-your-tracks kind of work you have to exercise that faith muscle. My goal after you read something I have written on creativity is that you go “OH, I think I’ll go paint now.” or “This really makes me want to start writing that novel that I KNOW is in me.” After you read my blog, I want the artist in you to feel like it has just gotten the best pep talk and YOU are READY to go create your art now because that is what I am trying to do to my inner artist as well.
It can feel silly because I enjoy talking about art and creativity just about as much as I enjoy actually making art. Ha! While I think this is funny and normal for creatives it can also feel frustrating because I talk about art as much, if not more than actually creating. But I think the reason for this is because getting to the part as an artist where you are engaged in your craft and practicing it TAKES SO MUCH WORK. Just to get to the starting line with art takes work. Life is messy and it gets in the way of artistic pursuits. For starters, the world generally doesn’t value creative pursuits. Our society tells you to get a business degree if you would like to be an artist as a back up plan. The problem with this is that art gets put on the back burner. We all have the exact same amount of time in the day and art takes time. It takes a lot of time.
BACK TO VEGETABLES
How can we as artists practice our craft more? How can we as artists produce pieces of work that we are really proud of? How can we accomplish any of our artistic goals with such a limited amount of time? Well, back to our chef and vegetable analogy. Why doesn’t everyone produce home cooked five star meals three times a day? Because it takes time. We could invest our time and cook a great meal, OR we could invest $20 dollars and order pizza. And we do this all the time because it is easier and convenient. When it comes to being an artist, don’t choose the easy and convenient path and put it on the back burner. Choose to invest in yourself. Ultimately, the reason why we tell our kids to eat their vegetables is because it is a long term investment in their health. Yes, they could satisfy their hunger with junk food but it isn’t the best way to eat long term. When it comes to being an artist, make a long term investment and eat those artistic vegetables because for the LONG-TERM it is the BEST investment you can make.
go create fierce art
Fierce Beliefs. Fierce Ideas. Fierce Art. Fierce Life.
Photographer, Blogger, Artist, Entrepreneur