You know when you're at the art store and you're trying to figure out what the best tool to use for the current project you're working on? Trying to find out how to get paid for your art work can feel just as overwhelming.
Because here's the thing. Talent does not equals success if you're heart's not in it. It doesn't matter if you're good at drawing car parts if you heart lies in comic books. Am I right?
Your Art Superpower is a combination of aligning your creative talents with what you are truly interested in. You can use this your compass while figuring out what art markets to target and how to set up your portfolio.
This superpower is what you can use to separate you from all of the other talented individuals out there.
After all, at the end of the day, there are really only two ways to enter any art market.
- You match your skills, abilities and passion with the needs of an existing market or
- You find a market you are passionate about and reverse engineer your skills to fit into what they are looking for.
Sounds simple right?
The problem lies when artists confuse being a fan of something with being passionate about it. It's OK to be a huge fan of something and not pursue it as your career just because it's in the same playing field your talents lie.
Just because you love a certain artist doesn't mean you should do the same thing. I love animation, but that doesn't I meant to be an animator.
You have to be true to yourself - your unique superpower. That simple change in mindset can be incredibly powerful, freeing make a huge impact on separating you from other artists in your market.
So how do that?
Don't worry i got you!
It's easier than you think!
Where do I start?
The first place I like to look is to ask yourself what it is you would do if you didn't have to worry about money. Of all your bills were taken care of and you could literally acquire anything you wanted, what would you create?
What you love isn't always what you should do.
Lets face it, we all have other artists that we absolutely love. For me it's guys like James Jean. For a while when I decided to really get my career, I thought I wanted to work like them and be like them because that is the work I loved so much, but I was wrong.
In the end it wasn't me, and I came to learn that being me was so much powerful. Once you realize that if you do what speaks to you best, the work becomes easier. You end up narrowing your clients down to fewer people that you need to reach out to, so you can be very specific and maximise your time and energy.
Also, as an individual, you have no competition as there is only one you. No more competing on price. People hire you because of your voice, talent and skill. Who doesn't love that?
Love the work, not just the idea.
Going through the process can lead to a lot of different avenues for you, some may get you super jazzed at the idea, and that is an amazing thing. What you need to do now is give it a real shot. Try it on for a week or two. do nothing but create work in your chosen direction. It doesn't matter if it's design illustration comics or photography, try it out.
For example, for years I wanted to become an animator. I dreamed of working for Disney or ILM, but after enrolling into animation in college I quickly discovered that I am not cut out for it. The thought of drawing the same thing over and over wasn't for me. I switched over to illustration and really haven't looked back since.
Sometimes knowing what you aren't cut out for can lead a great way to what we ARE cut out for.
Figuring out what you want to do is probably the most challenging and the absolutely the most fulfilling aspect of any art career.
It the words of the imortal G.I.Joe....
"Knowing is half the battle!"
Here are some steps you can take to move forward in your journey to figuring it all out!
- Take some time out for yourself.
- Crack open a new sketch book and fill it with a few pages of the type of work that you want to do.
- See how it feels a few days later and see if the energy and hype is still there. If not? try something else. It's only paper right? Explore!
- Once you have a few pages you love and feel good about, do some research and find some art markets that fit what you want to do.
- Find out exactly who would hire you and just what they are looking for!