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February 2010
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Switching styles

On our recent yahoo group, there was a lively discussion about changing styles, making more money and in general, a “where do I want to go now?” sense in the messages.

It is hard enough to go to a show with a labor intensive art product and wait for prospects. It may have taken you 6-12 months to create enough art work to be able to participate in the show, yet just a few booths over you watch people line up at a booth with an apparent “slap dash” style and you begin to question why you are there.  If the need to add to your finances is not there, then perhaps this scenario would not bother you. But if the need is there, it is a cause for doubting your chosen field. On the drive home, with virtually no sales,  it becomes a cause for doubting the viability of continuing to create your particular art product.

The answers to the original post about “what to do? I am too old to worry about compromising my style. I simply need to earn some money, etc…..”  were varied to say the least!  But there was a pattern that emerged and it was divided into two camps.

One camp pretty much said “Sure, try something new and go for it!You have nothing to lose.”

The other camp said “No, do not change! You will be compromising your artist integrity, stay with your style!”

Both sides brought good suggestions to the table. And both sides were right in their own way.  The problems with offering advice and suggestions to another person about their direction in their career, is that none of us ARE that person. We do not have their background, their history, their experiences nor, their temperament. We may have had similar concerns, questions or challenges in our own lives as the person we are advising but because we are not a clone of that person, we can only comment on what WE would do.

In other words,feel free to share your opinions. But also encourage that artist to do what he/she feels is best for  HIM/her.  We are here to offer advice but above all, encouragement. And that is a powerful thing!

1 comment to Switching styles

  • Theresa,
    Great blog!! You gave great advice in this article. As a detailed landscape realism artist that puts a lot of hours into one painting, I have been in this situation several time. I know how these artist were feeling.
    Again let me say, great advice!!!That kind of decision can only be made by the artist themselves. I have been tempted to change my style many times but have always come to the conclusion to remain true to myself. It’s just who I am!