Updated: Apr 20
It is fitting that Daniel Giordano posted an essay today describing his practice as a machine chugging along. We as artists need to have this outlook. The goal being maximum production. During the semesters spent in academy artists tend to get in the habit of making work on typically a five weak schedule. Let's think about that rate in terms of a living wage; considering we all want to be full time artists. Take an average annual income of 40k per year. In order to achieve that making one piece every five weeks. This warrant a $4000.00 dollar purchase price. No disrespect but this seems a little too much for the common emerging artist to ask.
The standard response from advisors is to just get a day job and work at night till you can make it. Don't fall into this ideology unless absolutely necessary. Dividing your time between a career and your art practice can have serious ramifications in your creativity and energy. You get out of college and you are young. Take some time to just go for it.
In order to be sustain off just your creative practice you need to take some time and be realistic about the economics. Simply put you can build up all the demand you want for your work but you must have the supply of work to meet it in order to make money. An engaged costumer base is much easier achieved when your work can be available for a reasonable price. This means you must produce more, faster. Focus on how to turn your work into product. While I am not advising you dumb down your work, you must realize that the big payout for one groundbreaking conceptual piece will come in time for most of us. Figure out a way to replicate your work and mass produce. Turn a painting into a mass produced print. Put illustration on clothing. Take an aspect of your sculpture and make smaller decorative design pieces. Your work will then appeal to a much larger audience. People outside the art world need to be relieved of the common barriers to entry as a consumer. Tangible, affordable objects are much easier to market. Gain your audiences interest. Slowly educate them to the more upscale works you have and you are good. Stop relying on some gallery to give you that big break and take it for yourself. Be a MACHINE.