Author Topic: Any aspiring artists here?  (Read 3562 times)

FIRE Artist

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Any aspiring artists here?
« on: March 15, 2015, 02:06:12 PM »
I am looking towards early retirement being devoted to visual arts/illustration and am wondering if there are any others on here with similar aspirations to devote their FIRE to the arts.

I currently do not have the necessary skills to make any money off of arting, but I have some natural aptitude (great spacial reasoning scores on junior high aptitude tests.  ha ha!).  My background is engineering, working in management in the oil patch (70-80 hr workweek) before having downshifted to the public sector a year ago.  This downshift has given me the luxury of time (37.75hr work week) to start honing my skills in classical oil painting and drawing.   I go to an Atelier style school once a week and take various workshops as I can.  My personal development goals for this year are to carry on with my classical studies, but also learn how to make a website for a blog/portfolio and learn how to use these new fangled digital drawing tools to try my hand at digital illustration.   

This all comes as a financial cost though, which I struggle with when I consider my FIRE goals.  Anyone else share this struggle with the cost of feeding your passion vs. the gain of an additional year of retirement?






bako_frugal

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Re: Any aspiring artists here?
« Reply #1 on: March 16, 2015, 09:24:57 AM »
This is one of the things that does drive me to want to FIRE.

Not really the classic visual arts, I am okay at water colors but not an inspired painter.   But I do want to get back to stained glass and ceramics.  Lapidary and sewing.  I would love to add wood working to the mix.  Also, finally finish a knitting project. 

And have the time for museums & fairs.

risky4me

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Re: Any aspiring artists here?
« Reply #2 on: March 16, 2015, 09:01:28 PM »
While I have always enjoyed woodworking, I was never able to make it pay enough to feed my family(I'm slow), so most of my life I pushed it aside. I have a small woodworking shop and am looking forward to spending more time making whatever I want without concern of it equating to a big paycheck. I also love to draw in AutoCAD and will likely be able to get some small projects after I refocus. Both of these pursuits are part of my 'making ends meet' plan that I am really looking forward to(later this year). I won't make anyway near what I make now -but it wont have to! Might just fill our travel/vacation stash though!

I have lots of respect for people that have tuned both their art and the ability to market it- a hard balance.

expatartist

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Re: Any aspiring artists here?
« Reply #3 on: September 14, 2015, 08:19:06 PM »
Hiya Diverging Artist, just ran across your post. There are thousands of free videos online for learning art techniques, but eventually it can be helpful to get personal feedback. This can be free - through online forums, but you'll want to have an idea of what part of the artworld/kind of aesthetic you're going for, there's a lot of crud out there - or via expensive classes.

Art supplies can get really expensive, but student-quality supplies are relatively cheap, and should be just fine until you're looking to show in galleries / sell your work.

Web design skills can generate income, have you considered paying for art classes (which offer benefits of socializing with artists) and/or art supplies with income from your design skills?

Little Nell

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Re: Any aspiring artists here?
« Reply #4 on: September 14, 2015, 08:29:36 PM »
When anyone asks me what I plan to do when I retire, I reply "I shall paint."
Can't do it much now, because once I get started I don't want to do anything else.

ministashy

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Re: Any aspiring artists here?
« Reply #5 on: September 15, 2015, 11:02:40 AM »
I guess I'm a little bit different--I'm a professional artist, though I still need a day job to support myself.  Am hoping to use MM's ideas, however, to stash away enough that within the next five years I can flip my full-time day job/part-time freelance art schedule to a full-time freelance art job/part-time day job (as needed).  Maybe not true FIRE, but it's definitely something that had never occurred to me that I could do before I started reading his blog--I always thought it was an all-or-nothing scenario.

I can't imagine waiting until I retire--even early retirement--to do art.  And I have to admit I'm curious:  are there are any other professional/working artists out there that are using MM's ideas to stave off the 'starving artist' stereotype?

expatartist

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Re: Any aspiring artists here?
« Reply #6 on: September 15, 2015, 06:16:02 PM »
I can't imagine waiting until I retire--even early retirement--to do art.  And I have to admit I'm curious:  are there are any other professional/working artists out there that are using MM's ideas to stave off the 'starving artist' stereotype?

Yep, professional artist here, though in the past due to low volume of art produced, I've preferred to make a living from art skillz rather than selling art (some illustration, art workshops, artist retreats, currently a long-term artist-in-residence gig) which provide cashflow. I have a handful of collectors who buy pieces before I show them in short-term arrangements with galleries, but sales of artwork have, so far, produced a very small percentage of my income because I've not worked that way until recently. That may change in the future, or it may not.

My art projects have always dictated where I lived, what I did for day jobs, and how I spent my time & cash. The goal for FIRE is to be more flexible in terms of my location, have more security, and be able to make more long-term plans.

SwordGuy

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Re: Any aspiring artists here?
« Reply #7 on: September 15, 2015, 06:23:19 PM »
I'm planning to do art 1/2 to 3/4 of my time once I'm FI. 

iamlittlehedgehog

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Re: Any aspiring artists here?
« Reply #8 on: September 16, 2015, 09:31:09 AM »
My technical degree is in art/commercial design. I've sold a few pieces but it has been relegated to hobby status. But like most of the posters it is a goal once I reach FIRE (in a million years from now). Maybe I'll go and show at all the little art and craft fairs around here and build a studio in my backyard.

Right now it's just a carrot at the end of a very long stick to keep my going :)

oinkette

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Re: Any aspiring artists here?
« Reply #9 on: September 16, 2015, 09:58:06 AM »
I like to draw.  When I FIRE I plan on devoting a lot of time to it. I'd also like to explore photography.  One of the things that appealled about finding out about FIRE was that it allowed me to think about my drawing without having to think about how to comercialize it so I could make a living off of it. This isn't some jab at "sell outs" or anything, I just hate constantly  thinking "how can I make money at this" seeping into my process. I do want what I do to be appreciated, I plan on starting a blog (or whatever platform still exists in 10 years) so that I'm not just drawing (or taking photos) for myself. But if I happen to make money it will be gravy, not the purpose.

partgypsy

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Re: Any aspiring artists here?
« Reply #10 on: September 17, 2015, 10:47:35 AM »
I love to write, and draw, and did comics. Have made money selling comics (just to pay for printing costs) and also did some illustration work that paid decent. Both my grandfather and great uncles were commercial artists, back in the day when it paid enough you could raise a family on the money. My husband has a degree in art, and sells his small painting/collages, and so he still keeps his hand it in to some degree. Basically if it wasn't for my regular job we would all be starving artists, which I have a deep seated fear/horror of.

I don't have any delusions that I could support myself on my art, but I would love to have the time to truly devote to it, specifically some longer autobiographical stuff in comic/illustrated form, a long fictional story, as well as quirky weird short stories. I am a big fan of Twilight zone and it's modern day relative Black Mirror. Things that you are not sure whether they are dreams, science fiction, or allegory.

ministashy

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Re: Any aspiring artists here?
« Reply #11 on: September 17, 2015, 12:00:40 PM »
I love to write, and draw, and did comics. Have made money selling comics (just to pay for printing costs) and also did some illustration work that paid decent. Both my grandfather and great uncles were commercial artists, back in the day when it paid enough you could raise a family on the money. My husband has a degree in art, and sells his small painting/collages, and so he still keeps his hand it in to some degree. Basically if it wasn't for my regular job we would all be starving artists, which I have a deep seated fear/horror of.

Yeah, I've always been a bit too practical to pursue art without a backup plan--I don't do well not knowing when or where the next rent check is coming from.  :)  Hence the day job.  I've been slowly building my clientele over the last 10 years or so, but still am only making $3K a year after expenses-nowhere near enough to ditch the day job.  But without more free time (which the day job sucks up), it's hard to go to more shows/do more advertising/etc.  Enter MM to the rescue!  And the sudden realization that my investments  don't need to cover my entire income, just any expenses my art income + a part time job won't cover ....

shelivesthedream

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Re: Any aspiring artists here?
« Reply #12 on: September 17, 2015, 01:30:32 PM »
Professional creative here. I use MMM's ideas to ensure I can do my "art" (won't go into too much detail but it's a team effort, not something you can do alone at home) as a career without worrying about money. I can leave jobs that I don't want to do creatively (or even logistically!) and take the ones that excite me. This has made my first year of full-time "arting" so much less stressful than for my peers. We live on my husband's small salary and save everything I make. I would not be able to do the work I do without that.

I would be fucking miserable in a full time office job. I have considered doing and work-then-play approach but I think this way round is better for me.

tardis

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Re: Any aspiring artists here?
« Reply #13 on: September 17, 2015, 06:21:51 PM »
Following.