How to Become a Professional Artist

Being an artist requires focus and determination — after all, no one wants to be a 'starving' artist. Not only is it important to follow your passions and hone your talents, but becoming a modern-day artist is a fulfilling alternative career path. If you want to be a professional artist, you can.

You can live out your dreams, creating stunning pieces from morning until night. When it comes to paying your bills and having enough money to fill your tummy, all you need to do is stop, plan, and then execute. Set achievable goals, allowing you to continue your artistic journey for a living.

You Can Become a Professional Artist —Here's How

How to Become a Professional Artist Image

Photo source: Wikimedia Commons

Who you are as an artist is what makes you special. Since artists vary from individual case to case, what may work for one artist, may not work for you. When you think about your career as a professional artist, what do you see? What is that you would like to personally achieve?

Before you take the plunge, there are a few areas to focus on. Don't be shy to write down your ideas, plans, and goals, that way you can see what needs to be accomplished in a more visual manner. Before you sit back and live the creatively driven life you have always imagined, consider the following steps.

1. Be Unique, Be Yourself

There's one key thing to remember — not everyone will like your work or agree with what you're doing, and that's okay. Art is subjective and there will be plenty of potential buyers who love what you're creating. In many jobs, being slightly odd and eccentric can be damaging to one's career.

As a professional artist, being unique is an absolute asset. There are plenty of talented artists out there and although there's room for everyone to develop and grow as an artist, how will you make your mark? What sets you apart? When comparing Monet and Van Gogh, there's a reason that their collections look nothing alike — they were their own unique self and their work reflected that.

2. Consider Potential Revenue Streams

Not every artist has the same approach when trying to sell their art. Due to advances in technology, there is now a whole new online world with endless possibilities. Will you focus on online sales? If so, will you create your own website to showcase your portfolio, selling directly to customers?

Web sales are great and they can make your art more accessible to those who would love to purchase it. With that being said, in order to be financially stable along your artistic journey, it's recommended that you focus on a number of potential revenue streams.

From gallery showings to creative markets, commission projects to teaching opportunities, don't be shy to dip into a couple of income opportunities. In doing so, you will quickly find out which approach is most lucrative for your artwork and in turn, you can better decide where to focus the majority of your time and resources.

3. Surround Yourself with Inspiration

Whether you're inspired by nature or the fast-paced city life, immerse yourself in whatever it is that inspires you. As you create a brand for yourself, you will develop works that feed into that brand, helping you not only express yourself, but allow you to increase sales as well.

Remember, places and objects are not the only source of inspiration. As an artist, hang out with other artists, especially those that leave you speechless. It's these type of people that will push you, helping you strive for more. Also, you'll all be in a similar boat in terms of past experiences and the road ahead.

It's this level of support you require in order to push yourself to the next level, always aiming to achieve more and more. Stay in-tune with professional artists who have already broken through and are making people talk. What is that they do that sets them apart? What is that makes them so inspiring?

The key is staying focused and inspired. Continue to create and don't be shy to get out there. You may have a room full of stunning pieces, yet if no one knows about them, how will you grow as a professional? Reach out, participate in local art events, and create a business plan that will push you into a more positive and successful direction. 


3 Keys To Making It As An Artist (Without Starving)

Professional Artist Magazine