F*ck It All

If you’re an artist sick to death of the path you’re on, you’ll want to read this

You make art. You fucking love making art. If you could spend all day, seven days a week making art, that would be your perfect life.

But you fucking can’t.

The art world as it stands has been designed to keep you down. It’s designed to make you pay to play, even if you’re in a gallery that only charges commission, you have to pony up money to frame your work, dress for the show openings, help advertise your art.

And so you have to split your time and energy between making your art, trying to get it in front of people who will buy, and working a shitty day job.

Right?

You don’t want to get caught up in a career because art is your life! But you need to make money to pay for that life, plus.. yeah… food and rent.

You’re the loser in your friend group who doesn’t have their shit together. You’ve got paint on your clothes, a desire to make make make and the kind of job your friends left behind long ago.

You keep telling yourself that when you get big, everyone is going to sit up and take notice, but maybe it’s been a long time. Too long. You’ve been at it for years. Entering contests, paying for wall space and doing the art fairs.

To get more exposure, you’ve donated work to charity and even done those art battles.

And you are done.

So. Fucking. Done.

But art is more than a job and you don’t know how to turn things around. You don’t want a job job and maybe you’re not sure you can even get one at this point. Do companies hire if you know the best match for neon pink is the specific turquoise that Golden makes?

Fuck.

Guess what? The art world has been designed to keep you down.

Read that again.

There’s a whole industry based on keeping artists in place because then you fall for stupid shit like those terrible print on demand sites that sell your work printed on everything for tons of money, but you only get a buck or two.

Or, you feel like you need to make a name for yourself locally but all the galleries are now rent a wall by the month PLUS take a fucking commission on every sale. But.. if you’re in a gallery it means you’re legit, right?

Maybe even the whole elitist side to the art world is turning you off. Disillusioning.

No one calls out a master plumber for charging for their work. No one says it’s selling out when skilled trades people make big bucks!

But artists, gallery owners, service providers are all invested in a system that is at best dysfunctional and at worst keeps you from making any kind of money on your work! You can’t fix it. You can’t change it.

Look, I’ve been in that system. I’m not writing this as some outsider looking in. I’ve done it. Galleries, shows, pay to play, print on demand. ALL of it. It fucking sucks.

And when you push back, it’s like trying to move a piano that has no wheels. Twelve hundred pounds of stubborn instrument and it won’t fucking budge. It likes being where it is and how it is.

So don’t bother. Instead, go around it.

It’s time for artists who are called to make art, to walk away from the system that’s set up. There’s a better and easier way to sell your art so that you can make a good living faster than you expected and from the comfort of your studio.

In your jimjams if that’s what you want.

Sell online, directly to your target market using social media, your website and an email list. Building your own audience of raving fans who fucking love you, love your work and clamber to own it.

It’s easier than you think. Requires some deliberate set up to make sure you’re reaching the right people. But you can do it.

Want to know how?

Paula Mould

Paula Mould

Paula Mould is a fine artist, published author and business coach for Leigh & Paula.

She also swears, mostly on purpose.

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