Category Archives: creativity links

creative thinkering

Another blogger posted about this and I thought it might be just the inspiration you needed to kick it up a notch this year. It was great to see everyone last night and I was amazed to see all your work!


New video

OK here’s Malcolm McLaren talking about his art school education and the idea of flamboyant failure on the way to creative success and about the idea of being an amateur. It is long and rambling but I think there’s something of value in it for each of us.

keeping afloat

My apologies for not posting more often lately, I have been swamped trying to prepare a new course I picked up at the last minute. MY summer is officially over as I am back in school. As always I begin a new term with optimism, hoping I will have engaged students ready to learn. Of course we know how many of them will fail to reach their art life goals because out here in the trenches we know how hard it really is to stay on track, stay motivated and do the work the universe sends us!!

A while ago I promised to put up some business links for artist insurance policies – Artists Help Network has put together a pretty comprehensive list of carriers, or you could ask your insurance carrier if they offer vendors insurance. Hopefully that will set you off in the right direction!

So, it seems like a long pause between meetings this time around, what are you all working on? I am finishing up a large cast paper installation piece for a show at JCC in October, I have been trying to really stay on track with this as it is a large project and of course the paper needs to dry, so I can’t rush in and finish it up at the last minute (which we all know is our preferred method of working!!) I am also playing with some new work, connected by a thought to this body of work but working in a less structured way. And I am writing lesson plans both for college and local organizations, along with doing some gallery research and a zillion and one other family things.

I hope you are all still on track to your goals – feel free to share what you are working on here or at the website.

So here’s my little bit of education related inspiration for today I hope you enjoy it.

creative arrogance

We have spent a lot of time thinking about the business aspects of creativity. Like many of you, I still feel weird thinking about my work in terms of value measured by money/income. Why is this?

I know for me it is partly because of my education, many academic artists I encountered on the path to my degree never spoke about money. Of course they partly supported themselves with their teaching activities, just as I do now, but they also sold art, their work, and never once mentioned that. In art school I learned that art & money don’t mix! But of course they must!

This is further reinforced by the glamour of the starving artist mystique. Artists enjoy suffering for their art, it is a rite of passage, if you aren’t hungry you are doing it wrong! Well that was all well and good when I was single. I lived frugally, I was OK with nothing. But then I had children. My kids didn’t sign up for that lifestyle and it wasn’t fair to them. I had to learn how to translate my creativity into income, and to do that I entered the coporate world, I got a job! I worked as a typesetter and graphic designer for many years, with some breaks when I went to school. In the beginning I felt like I was selling out, pimping out my creativity on business cards and logo designs. It took me a long time to realize it was OK to make money doing something I was good at that came easily to me.

So for a long time I have lived in two worlds, my studio and the office. Many of you are doing the same thing. In the beginning it was a bit like being behind enemy lines, the business culture has its own language and culture, I had to learn those things to function there, and I am smart, so I could and did!! I have always been a morning person, I like to get up and get going, so getting up to go to work wasn’t hard for me. I don’t sleep much, so I could work late in my studio too, because like most people I often hit my creative stride late at night. I made it work because I needed it to work.

I am mentioning all of this because as usual, my web surfing this week has turned up a theme… art & money. First I want to share this link, from an artist who has come up with a great marketing scheme to pay her rent! She is also getting a lot of flack from other artists for being gimmicky, but a girl’s gotta pay her rent! What do you think?

The second is another TED video, this one about the communication barrier between the art world and the business world. It’s about 20 minutes long so hang in there, and the pie chart on creativity is worth the duration! I am guilty at times of crarrogance, how about you?

rainy day list

The weather is getting me down, I am ready for spring. You would think that an English girl would be used to so much rain, but I am feeling gloomy as Eeyore today! I have been thinking about all of you this week, as I have been wrestling with my calendar and trying to get up into the studio to do some work. I have been working on a new business plan, I was so energised after the last meeting that I rushed home to begin, and now all that lovely energy is being washed away by a grey steady rain.

How about all of you?

So today I have been cheering myself up by surfing the blogs and I came across this post


and I liked the idea, making a list of what I love, as a way of getting myself back to a more positive place, so just in case any of you are feeling a bit down or overwhelmed or challenged in this interlude between meetings I thought I’d share the idea. Feel free to share your lists, it would be fun to see them! If you are interested in mine I’ll be posting it over at my blog later today!

a link you might enjoy

zen habits