"Kupkiss" 6x6" Oil ©Brenda Boylan Sold
As the days hasten to 2014, we begin to think more about the past year and ponder what next year will bring forth.
In this post, I am not trying to boast or make myself out to be the super duper star of this blog. My post is about YOUR goal setting and I am a huge believer in goal setting. What I wish to share with you is what I did to make my goals happen. So this is my "What, Why and How" to goal setting. As for diets, we won't even tackle that subject...but I digress.
Looking back, I think the past year has been quite extraordinary in terms of my growth as an artist. In light of the economic challenges most artists have experienced over the past 6 or more years, I made a mental decision to take this unknown "down time" and invest in the business of my work. This meant workshopping with master artists, building up marketing online and off, pushing myself to stretch in ways that made me very uncomfortable, and to try new things. I had decided that when the economy was ready for art, I would be ready for IT. And so for the past 6 years or so, I hunkered down and focused. I said "yes" to those opportunities that would lead me to my ultimate goal and avoided the ones that would misdirect me...and boy, there were many! I lost a few friends along the way, opting out of some fun, smaller art shows, I sacrificed a few family events, but I stayed the course. Reflecting back over this past year, things are really starting to move along. Do I regret any of my choices? Perhaps a few, Am I fulfilled? A resounding YES! Let me explain...
It all happened a few years ago when I attended the Plein Air Convention in 2012, the early morning marketing class that Publisher Eric Rhodes taught really hit me on the side of the head. I knew this stuff. I read it in books, I discussed it with others, I heard it on tapes, but something took over that early morning session that made me shift my ways. It wasn't easy either. It took work.. really hard work. I was no longer a pin ball bouncing around just doing things. I had directions. The thing is, it takes focus for any goal to happen. I just decided to work on it, and try to stay balanced. I accepted that somethings just get out of whack when the focus is lazer hot, but then you gotta make a point to take "down time" to realign. Life just gets in the way as always, and that is to be expected. Then this year, I began to see actual results for the first time in all my 19 years. I began to get invitations to participate in some incredible shows, judging opportunities came my way and galleries began to call. My work was getting noticed online and off, but the best part was that my work was beginning to sell.
My first hope for you in the new year would be to DECIDE what it is you want. Write it down and look at that goal daily.
Secondly, FOCUS on what it is you want. Stay clear of distractions and opportunities that will end up taking you nowhere.
Work hard. No explanation here.
Evaluate and decide. Sit down with yourself and ask what worked and what didn't, and make the needed changes.
Take chances and have fun with your art. It will take hard work and sometimes be uncomfortable, but it's all so worth it.
Here are a few of my top picks for goal setting:
(Disclaimer: I am not getting paid to post this, just sharing what I have done)
Eight Habits of Highly Effective Artists Blog Talk Radio with Leslie Saeta
15 Ways to Get Back on Track for Your Best Year Ever. Blog Talk Radio with Leslie Saeta
I'd Rather be in the Studio! by Alyson B. Stanfield
How to Sell Art by J Jason Horejs
Studio and Business Practices by Deborah Paris
Plein Air Convention, Monterey, CA. April 7-11, 2014
All my best to you in the new year!