View Full Version : Making the jump from hobbyist to ?

05-07-2013, 03:53 PM
Hello all! I have been traveling the past 2 years teaching English .. Painting has been my main hobby during this time. I am obsessed - I love it. I get burnt out at my job a lot .. on the front page of my lesson notebook I wrote in big letters "Creatively unfulfilling day job."

Last week I went to the Izmir Biennial Arts Festival. This was mostly oil, acrylic, and a handful of watercolor. Fortunately only one installation "art" :lol::lol:

As I walked among the displays I really felt like my art was as good as or better than a lot of the pieces there. And I asked myself why I limit myself so much with my painting! I share a lot on wet canvas and on Facebook, but I have never shown in a gallery or a public space. Why?!

I really think I am good enough for the festival/gallery circuit. I know I need work of course still, but I need to stop limiting myself. If others can do it, I can too! And you can too!

What keeps us back from following our dreams? Any advice? Inspiration? Thoughts?

05-07-2013, 04:08 PM
Josh, I think that you are ready to start showing your work! You really have grown in the last two years!! Have fun and let us know what sells!!


virgil carter
05-07-2013, 06:07 PM
J-Guy, are there watercolor clubs or leagues there as there are here? Many of these types of organizations host regularly scheduled exhibitions which are an excellent way to show one's work and to get critical feedback from a wider audience.

Painting schools and clubs may offer similar opportunities.

This is much easier, less painful and much less costly than trying for the private, retail gallery trade--but those too should be investigated.

Hopefully, your metro area/region has something similar to these for local and regional painters.

So...follow that dream!

Sling paint,

05-08-2013, 08:43 AM
I've often had those same thoughts, Josh. Virgil gave you great advice. I know we have local organizations that I could join and someday hope to. Taking every opportunity for growth and fellowship with other artists will advance your career. Best of luck to you!

05-08-2013, 11:01 AM
Why not follow up on Virgil's advise. Just "do it" However, remember that sometimes these organizations hold juried shows and on occasion we get left out....but don't let that stop you.

05-08-2013, 02:22 PM

In my case I slid from being a hobbyist to a part-time professional without really noticing...whilst I had been showing my work and selling some I found that I had started painting what I thought people would buy and not what I wanted myself.......yes, I have sold lots over the last five years, not for big money....but it had become where I needed to have someone doing my accounts, which cost money.........As I am quite old now I found I didn't need the hassle..yes I still paint but now for mainly for myself and if someone wants to commission a painting then fine but otherwise I am more settled in my painting mind.......

If I was under 60, instead of over 70,and felt like you do Josh I would go for it, see if there is a niche market that nobody else is covering ( mine was industrial scenes) and put your feet in the water and paddle........just watch out for sharks!

Best of luck with your dreams