Painting Is….

Becoming an Artist is Confusing.

How does one make a profit selling art? The product is expensive and often expires in a dark basement rather than inspires guests in a living room. In addition, as soon as beginner gathers a few skills, the art transforms from a potential revenue source into an addiction.

Supplies and invoices roll in the door like the mighty Mississippi during a flood.

Surely there is a way to overcome the artistic business bumps.

  • Does an artist really need a teacher for years?
  • Is a painter required to travel all over the country to “show” his basement’s contents?
  • How does one create a one man show?
  • Does an artist need two jobs? One to feed the family and the other to feed the addiction?
  • Where are the 12 step art counselors? They are not found on Craig’s List.

Painting Is An Addiction:

Teachers act as counselors for the artistically infatuated.  Counselors are usually assigned for people who are experienced addicts.  In the art profession. Teachers carefully guide healthy people to art obsessions.


Teachers often inspire false hope for those drowning in watercolors. Their main agenda appears to be marketing supply companies. Student be ware. Teacher’s opinions carry weight. If a student hears, “The paint is too old”, the newbie will buy a whole new set of colors to store in a corner until the next class. If you are a newbie to art, be a detective. There is a reason for old paint. Someone gave up before you started. Don’t follow in their footsteps.

Although addiction can occur at any age, the elderly on fixed incomes are the most vulnerable. They  look for new passions, something to kick start happiness as they lose their coordination, vision, and decision-making skills.

Teachers advise new painters  to save by working on one project at a time. This is a difficult task. Several brushes, colors, lights, easels, and group meetings await your dollars. The newbie finds learning the basic techniques difficult and frequently try another creative obsession. Thinking resembles this. “If I am not a genius at this skill, surely calligraphy will bring me fame.”  Now you need to buy a new tool set. My mother went from oil painting, to calligraphy and then slid all the way down to stamps.

A popular new fad is gathering families after dinner and colleagues during lunch to paint landscapes.  The teacher/counselors for these newbie group meetings carefully direct healthy individuals into online supply heaven for bankruptcy purposes. They cut out the pains of middle and late addiction stages. Suppliers convince healthy people to take a step while sipping a glass of wine and comparing everyone’s project with their own.

Those that want the addiction headache eventually need a dependable cash inflow in order to buy more supplies. This is where a new problem begins. When consignments morph into sales pitches to relatives, not even a discounts can help. The inability to move product will force you to skip art shows in neighboring states. Small local community shows prove unreliable and painters look for new methods to keep the habit healthy.

Here are Tips to Support Art Addiction

  • Mind management: The world may vote your work less successful than other dedicated addicts, but they haven’t seen Sue’s efforts yet. Now she needs a powerful special education teacher. Relax. Keep lying to yourself. Set up the easel for another fix, before your hands start to tremble. This landscape is sure to be different from the previous.
  • Sign your will now to prevent fighting over who inherits the basement’s treasures. Paying for the U-Haul truck previous to death is appreciated by relatives.
  • Sign up for a carpool to create enough peer pressure to attend another weekly lesson. Classes support cravings to open paint tubes.
  • Try making an apron in stead of buying a new one from the store. You might even judge this as cheaper.

For the Intelligent, Ambitious Addict:

  • Study the art business. Find a business mentor. Refuse to send your creations into cyberspace without a guide. Since art is a niche market, choose your passion and stick to it.
  • Choosing Aunt Millie’s portrait for a passion is not recommended. Repeat paintings show her face is sagging under new wrinkles while you wait for your big opening. Choose fish as a passion. After all fish come in schools just  artists. There are famous artists who specialize in undersea inhabitants. Some men did not want to compete with the fame of Christian Riese Lassen and chose to color the water that surrounds the fish. Seascapes are common living room decorations.

Portraits provide a lot of variety. Some artists are fond of antique clothing and furniture while others enjoy nudes. Pick your compulsion. Some artists like clouds, purposeful paint accidents, or even farm machinery. If you aren’t sure your talent will compete in an auction, try recycling. Nowadays you can buy lots of old canvases. You won’t earn money but you will save dollars by using someone else’s junk..

Marketing is All in Your Perspective:

How do you want to support your habit?   Do you remember the artist that shredded his 1.5 million dollar canvas? I heard it is now worth 3 million. See what mental illness can do for your pocketbook?

  • Choosing a niche market gives you years of hope before you decide to slide into a better niche.
  • Some artists create products and then paint them: Dishes, key chains, mailboxes, or jewelry. Artists hope cheap products will allow them to eat next month. I know a fellow who makes walking sticks for his friends to use on the way home from painting class. He particularly enjoys carving snakes on crooked sticks. Provides the appearance of action, I guess. He found a marketing need and filled it; but he might need to target a different buyer. Young hikers are more likely to pay $2,000 for a stick than the fixed income elderly art student; but you never know… His strategy could become a fad if located next to studio’s door. He could take lessons from the 10 cent stores who sold umbrellas.
  • One could follow all the marketing rules for painting; but what fun is that? People who have struggled choosing right from wrong for 30 years want art to break them free from a black and white life. After all there is no right or wrong in art.
  • Use other artistic skills to back up your addiction. I heard of a man who chose insects as his niche. That way he could spend time painting in the forest away from his wife during retirement. He couldn’t find enough people fond of his market. Thumbing through a fishing magazine, he felt inspired him to talk to the editor about painting the cover. It worked. He then spoke to another editor about interviewing an mosquito biologist and showing lots of his tiny oil paints Soon his insect niche became a profitable freelance job.
  • Restaurants and banks serve as galleries for small communities. Let me know what you discover about how well this marketing adventure supports your habit. An Oregon watercolorist sold many paintings this way. She painted domestic creatures in natural settings. Imagine eating eggs and bacon under a chicken and sow. Bison burgers might not digest well if eaten under a mom and her baby buffalo.

Maybe you have a more creative marketing strategy. Comment on your success and blunders. Remember inspiring others will inspire yourself. Hmm. Anyone want to create a 7-Step Healing Program for artists without experience?  It will be a tough sale, but who knows,  enrolling in Amazon might make you a few hundred dollars. You could even paint your own book’s cover.