What is a professional artist?

marketing and selling art by Misty Oliver-Foster

As I’m preparing for my upcoming workshops on marketing and selling art, I wanted to share this brief thought with you.

Often, our road to becoming a “professional” starts with a shift in our mindset about ourselves.  Then, that attitude is projected to others and reflected in our work.   We are professional as artists when we decide to be a professional.

It doesn’t matter if you make art “full time” or have a 9-5 office job and make art 10 hours a week.  You are the only one who can define who and what you are. There are a lot of “experts” in this matter (highly opinionated, often overly-educated, and undoubtedly creatively constipated), who will try to determine if you are truly good enough to call yourself a professional artist.  Don’t let anyone else define that for you.

“I believe that if it were left to artists to choose their own labels, most would choose none.”

  — Ben Shahn

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