This book is a guide for the reader through ten common problems that plague many professional (and want-to-be professional) artists. Noted artist, lecturer and author Loretta Alvarado offers the benefit of her own personal experiences as well as stories from dealing with many “shy artists”. Ms. Alvarado also provides concrete action steps to help those who might already be mired in these situations.
Targeted Age Group:: Adult
What Inspired You to Write Your Book?
As an artist, I’ve been struggling with selling my art. It seems like some years I do really well, and other years are pretty dismal. What could I do to sell more of my work?
As with the other books in The Shy Artist’s Guide series, I observe what other artist do. I started trying to pay more attention to what the successful artists were doing. I discovered that I wasn’t doing those things. There are a couple of mistakes that I was aware of that I tried to correct, but like most creative types, I suffer from Bright Shiny Object Syndrome.
What I needed was a way to focus. Writing this book was a way to do just that.
Mistake #6: Perfectionism
Think back to the first time you rode a bike. Were you able to ride it on your very first try?
Probably not. It took some practice. Maybe even some training wheels. But you kept at it. You kept falling. And you kept getting back on that bike because you were determined to ride it. Maybe you even had some help along the way. Eventually you were able to ride all by yourself without the training wheels. And didn’t that feel great!
Your art is the same way. It’s not going to be perfect the first time, or even the second time, or even the third time.
It takes practice to get it the way you want it. (Notice I did not say “It takes practice to get it right.” Whatever your vision for that piece is the “right” way to create it.)
One of the problems many artists have is that they aren’t able to immediately get the vision they have in their head onto the canvas, or clay, or fiber, or whatever the medium.
Maybe the necessary skills have not yet been developed. Or maybe the vision isn’t clear enough. Or maybe the wrong materials are being used. Whatever the reason, the vision of the piece you have in your head is not what is coming out.
When this happens you may start making excuses. You may procrastinate. You may get to the point where you are so afraid of making a mistake that you don’t create anything at all.
Don’t fall into this trap.
Part of the creative process is to make mistakes. Even this book required several drafts, and the help of outside perspectives before it was complete. This is how you learn. The more mistakes you make the closer you come to creating that masterpiece.
Keep practicing! Maybe the first try didn’t turn out the way you imagined it. Try it again. And again. And again.
About the Author:
The Shy Artist, a.k.a. Loretta Alvarado is the author of books to help artists and crafters sell more of their art.
And, it all started with a toilet…
When I owned the How Original! Art Gallery, I curated many art competitions. The one which received the most publicity was called, In the Toilet, An Exhibit of Art Meets Function. The publicity included several television news interviews and one was even a live broadcast.
It was at this live broadcast that the first place winning toilet artist froze. She was so nervous and terrified of speaking in front of the camera that she wanted to run. However, she recognized the opportunity and she managed to pull it off. Colleen did very well and was the inspiration for The Shy Artist.
I recognized that many artists, including myself, suffer from the same malady, fear of talking to the public. I remember how nervous I was the first time I had to appear on camera. I was really nervous the second time, too. And the third. But, the more I did it, the easier it became. Of course, that hasn’t been my only difficulty. As a former engineer, I was used to dealing with numbers, not people. I could sit at a computer all day long without any problems. But when it came to talking to people, I was usually tongue-tied.
When I became an artist, it was very difficult. I didn’t know what to say to people about my art, much less how to talk to people. But, I observed other artists and I learned. I still have trouble talking to people, but it has become easier with practice. Although when I get home after selling at a weekend show, the first thing I want is a pizza and then to watch cartoons.
Links to Purchase Print Books
Link to Buy The Shy Artist’s Guide to the 10 Biggest (and Totally Avoidable) Mistakes that Keep You From Being a Successful Artist Print Edition at Amazon
Link to The Shy Artist’s Guide to the 10 Biggest (and Totally Avoidable) Mistakes that Keep You From Being a Successful Artist Print book for sale via at CreateSpace
Have you read this book? Tell us what you thought!