Starting Your Career as an Artist: A Guide for Painters, Sculptors, Photographers, and Other Visual Artists

Starting Your Career as an Artist: A Guide for Painters, Sculptors, Photographers, and Other Visual Artists

by Angie Wojak, Stacy Miller


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Starting Your Career as an Artist is a comprehensive manual full of sound advice for artists seeking to advance their professional careers. Veteran art career professionals Angie Wojak and Stacy Miller show aspiring artists how to evaluate their goals, create a plan of action, and use their talents to build a productive life in the art world. Chapters cover topics essential to the emerging artist, such as building community through networking, collaborating, and finding mentors; setting up a studio; health and safety for artists; artist’s resumes and CVs; developing marketing plans; finding alternative exhibition venues; and refining career aspirations. In addition, the book includes inspiring and insightful interviews with professional artists and well-known players in the art scene.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781581158533
Publisher: Allworth
Publication date: 07/27/2011
Series: Starting Your Career
Pages: 288
Sales rank: 885,988
Product dimensions: 8.76(w) x 6.08(h) x 0.59(d)

About the Author

Angie Wojak has been the director of Career Services at Parsons the New School for Design for more than a decade. She lives in New York City.

Stacy Miller currently teaches in the photography department at Parsons The New School for Design. She lives in New Rochelle, New York.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments ix

Part I Self-Assessment and Developing a Career Plan

Chapter 1 Myths about Artists 15

The Guerrilla Girls' Guide to Behaving Badly 19

Chapter 2 Assessing Your Goals as an Artist 23

Take an Honest Inventory 23

Using Your Inventory 24

Taking Time to Reflect on Life and Work 25

Interview with Jerry Saltz, Senior Art Critic for New York Magazine 25

Part II Exhibition Opportunities and Community Building

Chapter 3 Galleries and Museums 33

Galleries 33

Interview with Elizabeth Heskin, Gallery Owner of Heskin Contemporary, New York 36

Interview with Don Porcaro, Associate Professor in the Fine Arts Department at Parsons The New School for Design 38

Juried Shows 42

Art Fairs 42

Museums 42

Interview with Claudine K. Brown, Director of Education for the Smithsonian Institution, formerly Director of the Arts and Culture Program at the Nathan Cummings Foundation 43

Interview with Sharon Louden, Exhibiting Artist and Educator 46

Chapter 4 Alternative Spaces: Breaking the Rules to Break Through 47

Examples of Alternative Spaces 48

Interview with Radhika Subramaniam, Director and Chief Curator, Sheila C. Johnson Design Center at Parsons The New School for Design 54

Alternative Funding Models 56

Interview with Kat Griefen, Director, A.I.R. Gallery 57

Chapter 5 Creating a Strategy for Exhibiting Your Work by Rhonda Schaller 61

Embracing an Alternative Mind-set 62

The Art World Is Changing 62

Working until Dealers and Curators 63

Alternative Models vs. Commercial Models 64

Alternatives Venues that Use Commercial Models 65

Online Galleries, Art Registries, Art Files, Juried Shows, and Open Calls 65

Do You Want to Pursue an Alternative or Commercial Route? 68

The Power of Creating Your Own Opportunities 73

Chapter 6 Community Building and Networking for Artists 75

Building Your Community 75

Assessiug Your Current Contacts 76

Networking as a Mind-set 76

ActivatingYour Network: An Artist's Perspective 78

Networking Basics 79

Interview with Melissa Potter, Multimedia Artist and Educator 81

Mentors 83

Interview with the Guerrilla Girls 84

Part III Setting Up and Maintaining a Studio Practice

Chapter 7 Setting Up a Studio 89

Studio Considerations 90

Interview with Thomas Wojak, Master Printer and Exhibiting Artist 91

The Studio Visit 96

Excerpt from an Interview with Sharon Louden, Exhibiting Artist and Educator 95

Pricing Your Work 96

Open Studios 96

Interview with Noah Davis, Exhibiting Artist 98

Chapter 8 Health, Safety, and Emergency Relief for Artists with Monona Rossol 101

How Green is Your Studio? 101

Historical Background on Artists' Health and Safety 102

Dangerous Materials and Equipment in the Studio 103

Legal Responses to Hazardous Art Materials 106

Issues for Schools 107

Studio Safety 101 108

Interview with Craig Nutt, Director of Programs for Craft Emergency Relief Fund (CERF+) 111

Interview with Monona Rossol, Founder and President of Arts, Crafts, and Theater Safety 113

Resources and Additional Information 117

Insurance Resources 118

Part IV Career Planning and Job Search

Chapter 9 Writing Résumés, CVs, and Artists' Statements 121

Résumés and CVs 121

What All Résumés and CVs Require 123

Most Common Mistakes on Résumés and CVs 126

Sample Artist's Résumé 127

Cover Letters 129

Artists' Statements 131

Chapter 10 Making Your Alma Mater Work for You 135

Utilizing Alumni Relations 135

Career Services 137

Career Resources for Teachers and College Faculty 139

Chapter 11 Graduate School 141

Degree Programs 141

Interview with Bill Barrett, Executive Director of the Association of Independent Colleges of Art and Design 142

Teaching Options 143

Professional Goals 143

Choosing the Right Time 144

Things to Consider When Selecting an MFA Program/Graduate School 144

Alternatives to Graduate School 148

Interview with James Ramer, Director of the MFA Photography Program at Parsons The New School for Design. 149

Chapter 12 Gaining Experience and Earning Income: Internships, Jobs, and Studio Assistant Positions 151

Internships and Artists' Assistant Positions 151

Interning in Galleries and Museums 153

Where to Find Internship Opportunities: 154

Interview with Carol Warner, Exhibiting Artist 154

Jobs: Earning Income and Supporting Your Art 156

Interview with Dennis Kaiser, Technician at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York 162

Interview with Misty L. Youmans, Manager of Institutional Giving at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art 164

Interview with Nate Fredenburg, Art Director at Tippett Studio 166

Interview Skills 168

Chapter 13 Exploring Teaching Options 171

Teaching Options 172

Excerpt from an Interview with Simone Douglas, Director of MFA Fine Arts Program, Parsons The New School for Design 175

Finding Jobs 179

Creating a Teaching Packet for Job Applications 179

Teaching Philosophy 180

Interview with Alexi Rutsch Brock, Artist and Teacher 181

Part V Your Artistic Practice

Chapter 14 Your Studio Practice as a Business by Carol Overby 185

Why Wear Only One Hat? 185

Keeping Records 187

Making Ends Meet 190

Conclusion 193

Chapter 15 Getting the Word Out: Promoting Your Work 195

Business Cards 195

PostCards 195

Press Release 196

Inventory List 196

Tracking and Sales Sheets 196

Web Sites and Social Media 196

Emerging Media 297

Managing Your Digital Profile 197

Creating a Mailing List 198

Determining Who You Want to Reach 199

Portfolios and Submission Materials 200

Interview with David C. Terry, Senior Officer/Curator, Artists' Fellowships & AAE, New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA) 202

Interview with Jason Goodman, Executive Director/Cofounder of 3rd Ward 202

Chapter 16 Legal Resources, Contracts, and Gallery Relationships 205

Artists and the Law 205

Artists' Groups 206

Lawyers for the Arts 206

The Visual Artists Information Flotline 207

Basic Contractual Terms for the Sale of Original Art 207

Taxes: Income and Expenses 209

Record Keeping 210

Schedule C-EZ 211

Forms of Doing Business 211

Moral Rights 212

The Visual Artists Rights Act 213

Copyright: Gaining and Keeping Protection 215

What Is Copyrightable? 215

Artist-Gallery Partnerships and Consignments 217

For Further Legal Information 219

Chapter 17 Fund-raising for Artists by Kay Takeda 221

The Funding Ecosystem: What You Need to Know Before You Start Fundraising 221

The Landscape: Types of Funders 222

Considerations for Individual Artists 225

Applying for Funding 226

Chapter 18 Residencies: Space and Time to Think and Work 231

Benefits of Residencies 232

Studio Programs and Equipment Programs 232

How to Make the Most of Residencies 233

Resources for Seeking Residencies and Artists' Colonies 233

Interview with Erin Donnelly, Special Projects Consultant, Lower Manhattan Cultural Council 234

Interview with Angela Ringo: Artists' Residency at Skowhegan 237

Chapter 19 Lifelong Learning for Artists 239

Interview with Theodore S. Berger 239

Interview with Chuck Close, originally published as "A Career in Art: An Interview with Chuck Close" in CAA NEWS, College Art Association, Volume 30, Number 6, November 2005. 246

Interview with Robert Thill 250

Part VI Refining Your Goals: Balancing Life and Work

Chapter 20 Inspiration for Refining Your Goals 261

Interview with Tim Gunn, chief creative officer at Liz Claiborne Inc. and Host of Project Runway 265

Recommended Books 268

Web Sites and Online Resources 269

Index 277

About the Authors 283

Customer Reviews