Should you be a full time artist or do art on the side of a daytime job?


Opinion piece~ Yay


*Disclaimer: All info written is that of the opinion of the author and should not be taken as law, rules, even if I am a yarn goddess.


Ah, the dilemma of all artists. Do I make art my full-time job or do I go out and make money other ways and aim to create art for profit on the side?

For me, I do art on the side. I work full time in a call center and part-time in retail. I create art in my spare time, and if it’s something I feel is marketable I’ll list it on my online store.

I love this way of doing things. I used to put my all into creating art for a living. I didn’t do all that well back then. I rarely made sales, has it not been for having survivor benefits I’d not have the luxury to pursue being an artist.

I consume a lot of artist-related content on the internet. Most of the time when I come across this topic I see artists promoting the go full time, transition from a day job, follow your dreams(terrible advice by the way) route. Admittedly they’re biased because they are usually full-time artist themselves.

And I’m biased against the full-time artist. Not that I have anything against it, do you boo. If you’re doing well then go for it!

Here are a few things to consider when you’re an artsy type choosing which life to live.

  1. Do you value stability over creative freedom? Really take the time to think about it. Is the stress of possibly not affording rent because your art didn’t sell worth the time you have to create it?

  2. Are you in a position to pursue a career that may take years to get off the ground? Do you have a stash of money saved to cover expenses when not making money?

  3. Do you have the patience to grow an audience? Do you have an audience? Is part of that audience financially supporting you? Sure likes are fun and all but you can’t buy groceries with 1000 upvotes.

  4. Is what you make even profitable?

I struggled with the number 4 for much longer than I’d like to admit. You see, I do make nice things in my opinion. But not many people are willing to pay for said nice things.

At least not in my local area. As for online, well I lack an audience larger than a couple of friends, even though I have posted my art online for years.

I’m not complaining though. I’m grateful to be able to spend free time doing things that I enjoy like drawing and crocheting. 

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