Take Care of Yourself!
The secret to success ... Not so secret, just a good reminder! "It takes a lot of energy to be creative." So ... Take Care Of Yourself! "Be regular and orderly in your life, so that you may be violent and original in your work"
While in London, I visited the Somset House which is definitely on my must-see list for anyone ... the exhibitions are absolutely incredible! One of my favourite things to do after visiting a gallery or exhibition is to buy a postcard. Its an affordable souvinir that I'll one day display as a huge collection in my home. "Sorry, you have to spend at least 5pounds to use our card machine." I was a little annoyed at first, but I really wanted the postcard, so after searching the bookstore for another 15 minutes, I bought a book that I didn't realize would completely change my way of thinking as a professional artist. So I suppose this time I took away more than a postcard ... I took away secrets to success!
If you can, I seriously recommend buying the book "How to Steal Like An Artist" by Austin Kleon. 10 SUPER easy things to tweak in your life to encourage creative output! Pretty awesome hey! Well the first and most important thing I could do, was re-evaluate how to TAKE CARE OF MYSELF!
This advice is fairly obvious, but its absolutely true. To be successful at anything in life (your passions, work, relationships, productivity) you have to take care of yourself. So this means, eat a healthy and balanced diet, exercise, surround yourself with positive people, get a good nights sleep and keep your day job!
Pardon me? Keep your day job?
It's every artists dream to make it as a full time artist!
Or at least I thought it was mine. But what I've realized, is that its good to have order and consistency in your life, so that when it comes time for creativity, you don't have to stress about the other things. The nice part about having a routine is how good you will feel when you schedule in your passions and having something to look forward to each day! My mom always said "everything in moderation" and she was so right! Taking care of yourself is all about balance, and being a successful artist requires balance too.
I always recommend to my art students when painting, to step back. The same applies to the time spent creating. This is the balance of taking care of yourself as an artist. When you step back and away from your work, you gain a new perspective which will insprire new ideas, taking you in a positive creative direction. You will give yourself time to think and reflect in a new environment, giving space for inspiration. You will optimize your creative output, getting closer to the work you've always dreamt of creating. So step back from your work, "be regular and orderly in your life, so that you may be violent and original in your work"
My order is keeping my day job as a teacher, which I also happen to love! This not only provides a regular paycheck so that I can afford inspiring holidays and art supplies, but it provides me with peace of mind. Knowing that I can pay my rent, buy food, or fulfill my other passions. Also, having a day job provides a place for interaction with people, a source for ideas and feedback, networking too! There are a lot of positive things to take away from having routine and separation from my artwork, but the most important thing I've discovered, is that when you plan time for your art, you are more productive and not to mention...excited more than ever!!! Have you ever noticed that when you have a lot of time on your hands, you don't actually get much done? Well, the solution is easy, keep your day job, and schedule time for you!
Looks like my parents had it right all along! They had given me this advice ever since I started painting and now I understand why. So here's a big thanks to both my Mom and Dad, and to Austin Kleon, for being so practical!
Good luck everyone on your road to success, but remember to take care of yourself along the way :)