Love from the hotel room in Iceland.
I would like to thank my family, my publisher and all of my friends who believed in me. It was a great journey to get to where I am now but it feels good to be here.
Something along those lines would be the speech of the artist in me. If I would truly see myself as one. I would be celebrating the fact that one of my photos is going to be published in the ART TAKES TIMES SQUARE book. But that’s not exactly how things work. That’s just not how it feels.
The editor of this wonderful little magazine of ours asked me if I wanted to write an article about what it’s like pursuing an artistic hobby/career from my point of you. So here it is. I need to point out that at the moment I take photography as an intensive hobby and not as a career path. I have however been able to gather some experience in the last two years.
I often thought about the reason for people to pursue any kind of art. One of the emotional factors is simply the need to have something to do in your life. Not just anything but a beautiful something. Pursuing an art gives your life more meaning in a way, a direction, a way to spend time when you are on your own.
Recently I read about a scientific view of artists, or at least performers. It seems that creative people, especially the ones that need the spotlight, could lack happiness hormones. They have a stronger need for appreciation from others in order to feel happy and fulfilled. In search of this happiness, these people chose a profession where they can receive attention from others.
So what’s in it for me? I have this theory and it has to do with a girl. Like it always does. Around three years ago, she left me for a photographer. Maybe subconsciously I chose this in order to be better than him in what he does. It is just an idea but knowing my neurotic self, it could be true. I do hope there’s more.
I once read a description of my birth date. They said I have a passion for possession of everything that is beautiful around me. That feeling inside, the pride and warmth that you feel when you made something beautiful is worth the pain.
There’s always the good and the bad. I guess the hardest part in being a creative today is finding out how to get to a point where you are more than just a facebook/tumblr page out of millions. I have seen a few interesting photographers who made it by completing 365 projects and posting regularly on flickr. Nick Miller got the money to publish his book by promoting on tumblr and Silvia Pelissero got her fame on deviantart. There are many platforms out there and the key is consistency, that’s for sure. Creating original work is an obvious one but it is just as important to constantly show your work. Shoot, draw, write every day, and get it out to the people. Just be careful of getting lost in the promotion side. At some point you get lost in trying to push your name around the web, among the masses of art that is created today. If you created enough work to back your promotion up, it could be beneficial for you but you might just forget why you started in the first place.
I am not brave enough to choose photography or any other art as my main career choice. Maybe I am just not good enough and art is tough cookie for the competitive ones among us. That’s just one of my weaknesses, I need to stay on the safe side. That’s why I chose advertising for my career but that’s another story.
I felt lost for a while; I forgot why I put so much time and money into photography. Having stumbled upon a blog called “creative something”, I decided to write to the editor and ask for advice. Here is what he wrote;
Thanks for writing. For what it’s worth, your situation isn’t that rare. There are countless people doing work and pursuing passions in search of something more much as you are now.
The best thing anyone can tell you to do right now is to stick to what you enjoy, whether it’s photography or design or writing. Keep in mind that by having such a wide focus on creating you’re less likely to become known as an inspiration in any one of those areas. Instead your value will come much later, when you find an agency (or start your own) that needs someone who understands all of those different aspects.
It might not seem like it right now, but do things you love any chance you get. Create, create, create, and in due time you’ll either realize that you’re only seriously passionate about one specific area, or you’ll create something that catches the eye of an important so-and-so and find your way.
Good luck. I wish I could help more.
This answer did help my get my thoughts together. It is often said that real art is made for oneself but fact is in order to devote oneself to something, it needs pay the bills and let you support a family. Otherwise you leave the art as a hobby.
Anyhow, being an “artist” today is harder than ever and the competition is constantly growing. In the end you need to do what feels right. It might take a lifetime, it might take some years of serving tables, but that might be just fine for you. Go for it. Just be honest with yourself, be honest with your art.