In high school my art history teacher gave me one advice that totally changed my mindset. She said: “Kid, if you want to get somewhere, get involved in the projects, voluntary work and internships during your college days”. I really took this advice to my heart. One might wonder : Why is it so crucial to do additional art related projects? Won’t it be enough if I just get my degree? Well, no, not really. Don’t get me wrong guys, I don’t encourage you to have no life and overwork yourself. As many things in life it’s all about balance. The most important thing that these collaborations give you is a contact network. One thing I learned through these amazing three years of my art education is that art creations need audience. What would happen if we would never be able to see Millais’s “Ophelia” or “Portrait of Madame Matisse” by Henri Matisse? The thing that these two artist (and many other) have in common is the fact that they were members or artistic groups.
You see here what I’m trying to say? You just never know who will pass on the good word about you or if this exhibition won’t be the one on which your painting will be admired or sold to a buyer- a friend of the person who organised the event. This story happened to me. I was on plain-air with my friends, we were hanging out by the lake, painting. The weather was beautiful so I decided to put my painting outside so that it could dry. Then the strangest thing happened. A lady that had a house nearby got completely mesmerised by my (my!) painting and she decided to buy it. You see, I’m writing here about many “firsts” today. It’s because your actions, the initiative that you take, your first email to someone might be just what you need to fulfill your dream about being a full time artist.
Here I give you the top three places to look for art opportunities:
- Instagram and Facebook. Almost everyone of us has an account on these websites. Follow many artists, galleries, events. Take initiative, dm someone and ask if maybe they’d like to do some collaboration. Put yourself out there!
- Open Call sites. There are so many of them! Take the chance, send your works. Just remember about few things. It’s better to take five titles, write deadlines in your calendar and give it a shot. Don’t take too many. Doing works by the given subject might put you off track of your own creations. Pay attention to participation fees (if there are some) and read all terms carefully.
- Your local galleries, coffee shops, newspapers. Don’t be afraid to ask! Face to face contact is very important. Maybe someone needs a new logo for their place? Or possibly some newspaper is looking for illustrations? Always carry your portfolio with you on your smartphone. You never know when it will come in handy!
Let’s not lose these chances, let’s say the word “yes” more often to the opportunities we come across.
Stay tuned, stay healthy, stay inspired.