Make Great Art

Create something. Whatever you create, noone can take away from you.

What happens along the path of growing up is that we somehow learn that to be an artist is equivalent to choosing a "potentially unsuccessful career". People tell us great artists make a solid paycheck, and not even the best artists will survive the jungle.

But here's a secret to success that many artists and musicians live by: write down your dreams on a piece of paper and then... forget about the competitive jungle. Just go out there and make great art. Just create ANYTHING that expresses YOU! You'll know you're doing it right when you start making the choices that bring you closer to the dreams you listed on your piece of paper. I say this as if the whole journey of life is clear cut, but unfortunately it is not. As artists, we learn to trust our own guts. Sometimes, our guts will be battling the responsibilities of adulthood such as eating and paying rent... but as long as we're working towards the goals we've written on our list, then we are taking the correct steps to success. Fictional author, Neil Gaiman, says it like this:

"Something that worked for me was imagining that where I wanted to be – an author, primarily of fiction, making good books, making good comics and supporting myself through my words – was a mountain. A distant mountain. My goal.

And I knew that as long as I kept walking towards the mountain I would be all right. And when I truly was not sure what to do, I could stop, and think about whether it was taking me towards or away from the mountain. I said no to editorial jobs on magazines, proper jobs that would have paid proper money because I knew that, attractive though they were, for me they would have been walking away from the mountain. And if those job offers had come along earlier I might have taken them, because they still would have been closer to the mountain than I was at the time."

Boyfriend leaves you? School gets hard? Your parents don't get it? Showcase that in your art. Tell your story, and who knows who your story might save down the line. I can personally recall plenty of records and actors that kept me confident when things got hard. You can do the same for many people in your situation! Create art that shows off the positive moments as well! Take all the qualities about yourself: are you smart, intelligent, caring, friendly, a leader, carismatic, creative - and let your art be a boiling pit for all those parts to combine and showcase the ultimate you.

There is no such thing as the right and wrong way. People made that up, and it's also the same people that say being a "successful artist" is impossible. However, the people who make these kind of judgements did not go out into the world to change boundaries in the arts, so try not to let their voice override yours! Pay attention to the voice in life that uplift you and lets you feel complete. Listen to that voice, because that is the voice that wants to tell your story.


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