FACT 1: STARTING IS HARDER THAN STABILIZING.
A lot of people say that the easiest thing about being successful is just starting, but with art its almost the complete opposite. You deal with lack of ideas because of the lack of experience, the struggle to find your own style, identity and the fear of being rejected stops people from putting out work on a daily basis. With art, its truly an all or nothing thing, so facing all of these problems in the very beginning is terrifying. If you look at my Instagram feed you can see the crazy amount of changes in a short amount of time. Even though I mostly got positive feedback on everything I put out in the beginning, I knew changes had to be made because I could tell it wasn't my style. I think thats one of the biggest problems that emerging artists face because its very easy to get discouraged when you have no fucking clue what you're doing. You're just making things with your hands/computer/whatever it may be and cross your fingers someone might like it. So getting to that point of stabilization and confidence in your own work allows you to go through the obstacle course of the art world. Expect to trip, fall and fail. Just don't forget to get back up and keep it moving.
FACT 2: YOU'RE NOT EVERYONE'S FAVORITE ARTIST.
I know I've talked about this before but it's important. Maybe you've found your own style and have an insane amount of confidence in your work, but getting the first negative comment can mentally take you back to square one. And it hurts. For example, at one of my first shows I was doing a live painting and a couple had came up to me and said, "You have a lot of potential and it looks like you have a clear understanding for where you want to go." At this point, I was smiling ear to ear because there is nothing better than hearing feedback from people in person while they're looking at your work. Directly after that they said, "I would never think about hanging it in my house though, we just aren't big on this style." I just kind of stood there and tried to cry and make it awkward. Jk. I cried. A lot. That was one of the first portions of negative feedback that I received but it was also one of the best pieces of information I could've gotten. It taught me that no matter the amount of potential you may have or skill you possess, you can't make people to like your work. Like its not gonna happen. Sorry. The bigger that you get, the more situations you'll be put in to experience different variations of feedback. That comment alone really helped me grow as an artist because it taught me to appreciate all styles and opinions of art.
FACT 3: YOUR SUCCESS IS SOLELY DEPENDENT ON YOU.
Now that you know the art world isn't so friendly sometimes (a lot of the time), don't make the mistake of taking it as a personal attack. I've spoken to a lot of artists who had received negative feedback and thought that their career was over before it even began. Don't let things like this get into your head because nothing positive comes from negative thinking. Being an artist is a dream job, you get to be your own boss and bring your ideas to life and inspire people that relate to your work. Don't make the mistake of thinking that time is on your side. One of the reasons I'm successful (so far) is because i work seven days a week, 10-15 hours a day but for me its never really "work". There will be days that you won't feel like working on a certain project or events in life come up that you wish you could go to. But if you choose to stay and create, these are the moments that can separate the good artists from the great artists in the long run. Because the great artists literally just love creating. A lot of people that try to be artists like to blame the slower rate of their success on everything else but themselves. We all have the same amount of hours in the day and if you choose to use them trying to play the victim, you're wasting your time. When I started out, I was using tubes of $2 paint and random brushes I had gotten from my grandma. I knew there was no sense of complaining because time is always better spent learning and being productive.
FACT 4: ITS 100 PERCENT WORTH IT.
After you get past some of the hurdles of becoming an artist, accepting the fact that not everyone will like your work and taking full responsibility for your art and its success, you'll learn that being an artist is one of the most rewarding jobs out there. It makes all the early mornings, late nights, trashed projects and moments of self-doubt seem very small when you get to experience the effects that your art has on the world. Hearing that you've inspired someone or even seeing different ways to look at your own art via peoples opinion is really fucking awesome. Sometimes the hardest part of being an artist is getting through those moments of self doubt and humble beginnings. No one is created equal and no painting/drawing/pottery style is way better than the others. I've had the chance to speak to some super successful artists and the same thing they all have in common is just the love for art.