Tricky Business…

Struggling with meaning, when art intersects with business.

Lately, I’ve been pondering the intricacies of deriving meaning from work, from life, from art.  There is clearly an incongruence when it comes to building a sustainable, artistic career, no matter what medium – questions will continually arise surrounding pay, personal/professional investment, and balance.

Is the business of side of things inherently separate from the artistic?  And if so, how can we merge the two in order to effectively build our ‘brand’?

To feel successful in our chosen medium, we need to understand the full scale of where the art sits within the larger structure, I suppose.  That, to me, seems pretty tricky.

In a society that values certain things… how can an artist define “success”? Moreover, does it matter?

To be successful as an artist (or anything, really,) suggests that one has found meaning in their work, that they have reached or surpassed a goal of some sort – and that it matters.

As artists, how can we find the meaning in our work and share it with others in a way that can truly build a life?  And does it only ‘matter’ if it can pay the bills?

Are we doomed to a life of spiritual struggle, as we attempt to unlock the secret to creating a fulfilling, artistic career, or will the path become clear if we continue to seek meaning in our work…


@meganemichael – Twitter


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1 thought on “Tricky Business…

  1. Tricky indeed. For many. I teach a grad course on entrepreneurship at the university and one thing I make clear is the observation that success is more than doing all the shrewd things, it is tied more to your beliefs about yourself than you might ever believe. This dips into what the Tony Robin’s of the world say about success as a reflection and belief about yourself. Early in my career my own inner biases kept me from believing I could sell expensive work, so I didn’t. I never made any….until I did…and SOLD THEM. So much for the starving artist idea. Still, little else replaces discipline and dedication to work work work.My 5¢.

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