As an artist, this is one of the things I struggle with the most.
But because I like to eat and now I’m living abroad and on my own, I’ve been researching on this topic. I even went to entrepreneurship workshops with the wonderful guys at the Lancaster Uni Enterprise Centre and they gave me many insights and ideas on how to keep developing my artistic career. I was so grateful that I wrote this post for them on all I’ve learned so far with pricing and selling artwork.
I still find awkward asking for money in exchange of what I produce, considering that my writing / illustrations come directly from the soul. But then again, (and as I said in the article) nobody expects to go into the supermarket and grab a loaf of bread for free just because we need to eat and that’s a primal human need.
Art is a human need. I don’t agree with Elizabeth Gilbert when she claimed the opposite in Big Magic (a book that I actually enjoyed, for many other reasons). Amanda Palmer said in The Art of Asking (a book that triggered a sort of artistic enlightenment for me). The artist is like the primal figure of the shaman from the primal tribes. She is the person who heals the community at a psychological level because she gives them the catharsis in the form of stories, images, rituals…
Art does that for me all the time. The Bone Clocks and really, in any book by David Mitchell give me comfort at a time when I’m more conscious than ever of how small I am in this wide universe and how little I can control fate. If fate is not already written, that is.