First off I hope this finds you all safe & well! These are crazy, bizarro-world times! But you’d think self quarantine would be a piece of cake for artists! I mean it gives us tons of time and space to create and we usually work alone in our homes or studios anyway, so no biggie to socially distance & create our butts off, right? But let’s not forget the stress from lack of work/money, the human need for being social and the inspiration that comes from that, and from travel, having new experiences, going to actual museums, galleries, etc. Then add on the fear of getting sick and dealing with all that this strange new world presents, piled onto the typical creative blocks and this can be a tough time for artists especially those of us that make a living from it!
For me, I’ve had to find new ways to adapt to being a professional artist in the pandemic age. For one thing I now give all my art & creative marketing lessons virtually (thank the Gods for Skype, Video Chat, Zoom…). I’d be in big trouble if it wasn’t for this technology and so far it’s working quite well. Of course good ol’ fashioned in person classes are great but this is now a convenient, safe & affordable way to keep teaching and sharing art.
And luckily I am very used to working with my freelance project clients remotely, so that hasn’t changed much although of course many people no longer have the finances to buy art or hire a designer or illustrator to work on their projects, so I am VERY grateful for the people I currently am working with! The other big change though is the cancellation or indefinite postponement of all gallery exhibits and art events! I typically have work in at least one or two events per month, often more from spring thru holiday season, and that’s all on hold. Some galleries and art organizations are doing online art exhibits & events, which I have been participating it. It’s great to see the ingenuity of these people in trying to keep the arts going. The downside is it’s much harder to sell thru these types of events & I think those running them get this and have either reduced or eliminated submission fees, lowered commission fees, etc. which is a good way to keep artists engaged. But this all spells tough times for anyone involved in the arts as a career. I recently had this digital photo collage in an online art auction….we’ll see if there were any takers…
“In memory of a Friend” (c)2018 Lauren Curtis
This is the time when we all must think outside of the box and find new ways to keep our jobs…not just artists…and it’s really difficult. Some people just can’t work from home and I REALLY hope the powers that be step up & fix our broken benefits system to help everyone out in need. As artists we must try to over come the depression and anxiety from this situation…or channel it into creativity and new work! I’d love to hear from you as to how you’re coping with the pandemic, especially if you’re an artist of any kind, and share your stories in the comments here & if you know of any opportunities for other creatives to get involved with please share them. You’re not alone in your fears and worries and I hope, no matter what your profession, things will be OK for you & that you stay safe & healthy!