As much as I'm sure you all wish you could paint all day, often the sad reality is that many living artists doing art, cant make a living doing art. If your anything like me you have a day job from 9-5 and you dedicate as much as you can to your art from 5-9 and beyond.
So, if that's the case, what do you do from 9-5 or whatever your day job hours are?
If you went to art school or college for the arts, how did you make ends meet before or after school?
If your in between work or retired, what do you occupy yourself with when your not making art?
Do you feel like where your work or what you do influences your art in any way?
By day I work at a mid-sized contemporary art museum in Southern California. I work in the registration department where my main focus during regular scheduling is processing incoming and outgoing art loans from the collection and inventory. During exhibition install/deinstall, I work closely with a few other departments to install and examine the condition of our artworks.
Luckily, one of my 6 or 7 professors in my senior year of art school had a brain enough to ask me "So what are you going to do to make money when you graduate?" knowing that I had a wife and a daughter on the way. In my head I was like, "Well I'm going to continue to make art and hopefully get into a gallery and sell my work". Oh how naive haha. That was when she told me to pickup a couple internships at a museum to feel out the place and see if there was a spot for me. I'm glad I took her advice because I got lucky and there were a few openings that helped keep us afloat financially but also kept me in the art world so to speak. Years later and many positions down the road I still work at a museum but in a different capacity.
I would say that some aspects of my job have influenced my art more than others. For instance, I have the luck and luxury that I am around art pretty much 24-7 whether its my own or other artists work. I think that helps me compare and contrast my work with others to see what I am doing wrong/right and perhaps expose me to different materials, mediums, subject matter so on. I think the downside is that I am around art 24-7 too haha. A major goal for a lot of artists (myself included) is to get into a museum collection or gallery, but as an artist that works at a museum, there is a certain magic that is lost when seeing where all the work is stored collecting dust. The sad reality is that only maybe 20 percent of the work, definitely less as the size of the collection grows, will ever see the light of day. As an artist I kind of have to detach myself from that a bit and go along merrily with a degree of delusion and or acceptance. I will say that I definitely take care of my work a lot better as I gain experience in handling other works that are in some cases priceless. In addition to that I've gained a greater appreciation for wrapping, packing and displaying my art over the years.
Anyone else want to share?