Artistic drive - Artist Forum
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post #1 of Old 04-20-2015, 10:38 AM Thread Starter
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Artistic drive

I'm a professional artist, do art shows and am in galleries, have been sculpting since early 90's, painted and drawn since early childhood. Also, I'm a senior citizen and have been an artist all my life though not professionally until the past 20 years. I was doing fine, sculpting new pieces every year and then two years ago I got married. For some reason my drive to create has dwindled; I still produce paintings and sculptures occasionally but not nearly as much. I built my business by myself though I didn't really want to call it a business, that word took of the romance out of it, I guess. I felt proud and happy when a sculpture would sell or a painting, of course; selling enables me to continue creating, especially bronzes. The problem is now my husband likes to call my business our business, my bronzes our bronzes, the foundry that I use the founder that we use, my art show our art show. He wants me to produce product. He is a businessman, that's what he does for a living so he's treating my business like he would treat any other business. When something sells I give him the check and he manages the money. I must say, though, that he has put in plenty of his own money to cover art shows! The problem is this: I know longer have the drive to create. Even though he is doing a lot for me, I feel like he has taken away from me what I need personally as an artist. I know that's not what he wants, he really wants me to be happy and for me to do artwork as much as I want. He even wants me to do it when I don't want to. He's a very good man, loves to manage my art business (OUR art business) but I don't know how to tell him these things since it would hurt him. Maybe I'm just being selfish and unappreciative…I guess I need advice, opinions from other professional artists. Does anyone understand?
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post #2 of Old 04-20-2015, 11:06 AM
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Yes, I do. When art became work with a schedule, I dreaded the start of any piece. I quit for a long time.
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post #3 of Old 04-20-2015, 11:16 AM
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Yes..completely. I have to take complete breaks from art because I tend to draw for others as they ask and then I just get tired of it and back away for a while until I recharge. I keep telling myself that I need to start drawing pictures for me but everytime I start something happens and they go away to family as gifts.

There is nothing wrong with taking breaks from your art. I have found that not doing art until I am ready has only helped. Doing it at the demand of others all the time can put you in a rut. Backing off and coming back enthused and ready to go will produce better pieces. When you aren't in the game it does show in your artwork. I have seen that happen to me.

I know you don't want to hurt his feelings but maybe sitting him down and explaining how you work artistically might not be a bad idea. Art should come from your soul..because you want to do it..not because you feel pressured into it.

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post #4 of Old 04-20-2015, 11:45 AM
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I'm not in your shoes and I have a much rougher personality I think, but if it were me I would definitely tell my husband that I need to be sole proprietor of my artistic endeavors. Actually if it were really me, I would say "please but out, it's mine and I don't want to share". And if it hurts him so be it he's a big boy. Just My Opinion.

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post #5 of Old 04-20-2015, 11:50 AM
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Also welcome to the Artistforum. I look forward to viewing your art and hope you enjoy the forum. Artist here range from beginner hobbyists (me) to really magnificent professional artists. If you need help navigating the web site be sure to ask. Just click on my name and leave a message.
To load pictures to your albums:
>create an album. Click on "user CP" above and select "Picture and Album"
>after you have uploaded a picture be sure to write something in the field Caption over what is already there. If you don't do that others will get the error "Invalid Album" when trying to view your picture-- it's a glitch on this web site

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post #6 of Old 04-21-2015, 05:47 AM
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Hi Kristikay, welcome to the forum.
Well done for achieving so much with your art, you are in the enviable position of having your artwork appreciated in galleries.
Being able to do what you love, as a living and having someone who cares and believes in you enough to support you financially, all the while taking care of the business side of things, does leave you free to concentrate on your your artistic creativity.

We all, as artists, lose our drive from time to time.
In my opinion you need to refocus, take a little "Me time", and rediscover your passion.
Deadlines, hard to please clients and uninteresting projects all combine to dampen our enthusiasm.
What used to give us that "Buzz"? Why do we do what we do and have we lost sight of that?
Have we achieved all our goals? Do they need to be bigger/more epic?
Who or what really inspires us? Can we become better at what we do?
Have your priorities changed?

Take some time to yourself, do things that will boost your energy and your mood.

Your husband wants the best for you, so explain your feelings. As a businessman he will understand that your spiritual well being is an investment, that will help "Our business" grow at a exponential rate, based on your creativity.

Hope this helps, I would really love to see you get your "Mojo" back, and start posting your work on this forum.

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post #7 of Old 04-22-2015, 12:40 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you so much everyone for the advice...there are times I just want to quit creating for a while and do other things I'd like to do. But it seems I'm always preparing for a show and, as my husband says, I must have product to sell! Sure makes me sound like a factory! Anyway, I understand both sides; need time off and need to produce. As for my husband, I know he wants the best for me and he sure does save me from having to deal with a lot of the business side. On the other hand, I don't like any type of control over me. Right now I'm preparing for a show so must paint and sculpt. A few weeks after that I have another show to prepare for. Then I have a few months before another show. I guess if I quit shows, the pressure would be off. If I just take a break from my usual shows, I would lose my reserved space which I really don't want to do. So, it's a circle; I go round and round...
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post #8 of Old 04-25-2015, 10:38 PM
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I agree with what the others have said Kristikay (By the way HI!! Glad to have you here)

I might add.. art is different than the "business world". In a product.. you can just keep producing.. and I suppose in art you can in a way.. But your work will suffer. True art.. great art.. is inspired. You can't force things to happen. If you continue to try to force it.. you may end up burning out which could take years to recover from!

A couple of options are available...

#1 Take a break.. and come at it with a fresh mind..
#2 Try a different medium.. this has helped me break out of a slump.. and it's fun to change things up (try digital) I even know someone who painted with ketchup and mustard!
#3 Try a new style.. like abstract.. it's a lot of fun.. and you don't need to work at it so hard. For example.. I know a guy who put paint on his cat's feet.. and let it walk on the canvas (can you say "Happy Accidents"). That painting sold for some ridiculous amount (in the 10's of Thousands IIRC). The guy did nothing (I hope he brought the cat a silver bowl or diamond studded collar.. LOL!)

Above all.. dialogue with your husband.. Let him know that you can't just put out artwork like a machine.. that you need to be inspired for each masterpiece. He will understand! And if he respects you... which I am sure he does... he will help you break this "slump".


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post #9 of Old 04-26-2015, 10:37 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you so much Bushcraftonfire; your advice is so appreciated. I do need a man's point of view as well as a woman's, let alone an artist's point of view. The man wants to provide and be useful and the woman (artist) wants to feel in charge of her own artistic endeavors. Like I mentioned, it's so helpful to have someone take care of a lot of the business side of things. But I do feel pushed to produce and it's making me feel like I don't want to create now. When what I do begins to feel like a job, I no longer want to do it. Yes, I'll always do art but I'm on the verge of quitting shows since that's what I'm always having to prepare for.... maybe I just need a break like so many have said...
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