Sunday, January 25, 2009

Question: Top Ten List for Success as an Artist | Bryan Ritchie


Hi Bryan,
I wanted to put together a top 10 list of habits or actions that make you become a successful artist. And get and bunch of opinions from different artists. Thoughts? What would be your list?


Hi David,

On my list I would include persistence and a strong work ethic. Persistence in that one will face many rejections in the course of building a career. I myself have had many rejections from job applications to juried shows, but if you are persistent, and the work is there, you will find an audience. As for a strong work ethic, as blue collar as it sounds, at the end of the day you need something to show when the opportunity comes. AS they say, luck is when preparation meets opportunity. I remember reading an article about Chris Ofili in which he described his working process. Chris makes a new watercolor every morning before tackling a larger painting. While he is better known for his larger paintings, his watercolors not only served him well as a zen like preparation for the day, the large body of watercolors also became something to exhibit and sell.

Other than that I would suggest being informed through gallery visits and reading periodicals, but also remember that true innovators do not follow the herd, one must always make work that is true to oneself. Perhaps more important, I would suggest defining what success is as an artist and making appropriate changes to accommodate that vision.

Hope this helps

Bryan Ritchie |

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