It is a brand NEW year in so many ways. I ended 2014 in a perfect position in my life. I finally graduated from college and we sold our house. I started the new year in a tiny apartment, waiting for our next home to be finished. No more school for me this year.
I was finally able to catch up on sleep, rest and decide what is next for Leslie. I haven’t had this amount of time for just me, it’s more than the word amazing can describe.
I have had time to make a plan on my goals now that I’m an artist, no longer a student or an art major. I’m taking a tiny break from work. I think I have earned it, eight years of college on and off calls for some down time.
I know part of being an artist is branding. This generation is all about social media. I’m starting…
I am addicted to a camera, photography, photos and INSTAGRAM is just that. So I was on the bandwagon a long time ago displaying my art, my studio shenanigans and art adventures.
Facebook is a HUGE part of our social motivated world. I created my FACEBOOK Artist fan page and this is the picture of my very first like. As a starting artist you have to embrace all the different ways there are to promote yourself and find what works best for you. Facebook works for me because I have family and friends all over and they can’t always see my artwork in person. This way they feel they are supporting and staying in the loop.
APPLYING, APPLYING, & APPLYING SOME MORE!
An even bigger part of being an artist is exhibiting. It’s not news to me but it now has become a part of my everyday life. When I was a student I felt I had time, that it was more about doing that in the adult life. Hahaha, well now I am in the adult life!
There are so many exhibits, fellowships, residencies and proposals to apply for. It hurts my brain. I have to figure out which best suits me and my work. They are not cheap either but it takes money to make money.
With applying comes rejection too. I get sad for like a second and then I get over it. Rejection is part of the process. You can’t get into every single show, or fellowship.
GROWING & LEARNING
There are things that you don’t learn and they don’t teach you in college. It is not just about painting and TA-DA instant fame! It is so much more to it. You have to network, go to shows, meet artists, learning from other artists and promote yourself.
I have been blessed to meet several people in the Houston art community that have taken me under their wing. I love spending time with them because we speak the same artistic language. Not to mention that I get to learn so much from them. Who better to learn from than those who have already gone through it? Exactly!
Some people need the structure of school and someone to guide them to be productive. I can’t have someone over me all the time and it also messes with my concentration. I work so much better alone in my own space without distractions.
I say all this but since we moved into this temporary apartment I can’t focus on my art. There is just no space at all. All my materials are in shelves and in boxes, canvases in storage. I thought I could do it but I can’t work in such disorganization. So my art has taken a back seat and I have been working on my photography. It has been quite some time since I dedicated real quality time to practicing with my camera and editing programs. I may not be painting but I am creating.
Overall this down time was a necessary that I did not realize I needed so much. I had time to balance my personal life and focus on what my future goals are. Meeting with people I haven’t seen in some time because of always being busy with school. I have a few commissions to start working on as soon as I get my studio back in the next few weeks.