Who are you and what do you stand for?
Are you clear on what you value?
What does this have to do with the business of art? Everything.
And that’s why the first week of my new Making Art/Making Money Course is dedicated to “Valuing.”
What is art? Is it beauty? I think not. That’s in the eye of the beholder.
On a deeper level art is a celebration, an examination, of values designed to stir our emotions.
Artists really sell feelings. If we didn’t then we would just be selling musical notes hanging in the air, paint stuck on canvas, or strands of text.
What do you, not as an artist but as a person, really care about?
If what you value is not reflected in your art then your art making is simply a technical exercise.
By knowing what you value you can connect with your tribe and their values.
Why? Because sharing our values brings us together and satisfies our deep longing for belonging.
Andy Warhol valued and marveled at the consumer consumption of celebrity.
Thomas Kinkade valued American conservative Christian values.
I value painting as an active meditation by focusing on light as a reflection of colors.
One artist I’ve coached values celebrating family relationships, as a children’s portrait painter.
Another artist I’ve coached values playful transformation of recycled materials, as an eco artist.
Yet another young artist I’ve coached values self-reflection as it relates to his emotional maturing as a man. He’s a fine art illustrator whose images are inspired by narratives from his journals.
What you value is a reflection of your unique human experience.
This the very basis for your unique value proposition that will be the foundation for value above and beyond the art itself.
This is the only way to differentiate your art.
“Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.” ― Oscar Wilde
Or as Russell Simmons tells us, “Do You.”
Last but not least.
“If you have something to say to the world, you must make art.
If you want to be heard, you must sell art.” Ann Rea
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