I’m often asked about setting artistic goals and what I’m trying to achieve with my art. Do I have a specific aim, like to have a piece of my work in a museum? Am I looking for notoriety or fame? How will I know when I’ve achieved the level of success I want?
As a professional artist, I have a lot of goals and aspirations for myself and my art. I can’t say I have one particular end goal or one driving idea for my career. I’ve set and achieved many different goals, and I have no doubt that I’ll set other ones that I’m not even aware of at this point. Mostly, though, my biggest aspiration is probably just to get my art out to as many people as possible, and to have people enjoy the imagery I create as much as I enjoy creating it.
Some career paths are fairly well defined, with set milestones and an outlined plan to move forward with a company or in a field. A less traditional path—like being a professional artist—doesn’t have a set trajectory or endpoint. There’s nothing telling you where to start, what to do next, or how to achieve the individual’s idea of success.
You can choose to explore so many different avenues within the field of art. You can set up your art at weekend shows, you can show in galleries, you can have an online store, you can focus strictly on city projects, and so on. While I’ve noticed that many artists choose one specific path, I’ve attempted to spread myself out, trying several different options to see which I enjoy most, as well as which ones yield the best results for the time and energy I give them.
With each aspiration, I’m realistic about my time, ability, and knowledge of the project to ensure that I set myself up for an obtainable goal. If I look back at when I started on this path, I’ve obtained so many goals and know that I’ll continue to set larger ones. Along the way, I’ve found that moving forward is sometimes slower than planned, but the things you learn along the way are often just as valuable as reaching the goal.