You’re grateful for your health, your family, and your freedom, but when is the last time you acknowledged a debt of gratitude for the following?
Be grateful for . . .
Electricity and running water. Think about the artists from the past who made art by candlelight or had to haul buckets of water to clean their brushes.
Your stash of art supplies. You don’t need pricey materials or tools to make art, and a true artist will make art out of anything at hand. Paul Sérusier painted his seminal piece The Talisman (1888) on the cover of a cigar box.
The generosity of other artists. Sure, you’ll encounter some petty artists who think they have big secrets to keep from you. Just ignore that attitude and move on. Send a sincere note of gratitude to artists who share their time and information with you. Just don’t take advantage of anyone’s generosity.
Laughter. If you’re going to waste some time online, you can do so with high-quality art humor. Nothing makes me laugh as much as the That is Priceless blog – masterpieces from art history with new titles.
Lurkers. It’s frustrating when people just want to look and talk about your art without buying, but every person who engages in a conversation about your art brings you a step closer to your goal. Thank them. Acknowledge each blog or Facebook comment, email, or tweet with a full heart.
Opportunities. Each opportunity has possibilities. Hanging your art at the coffee shop might seem like small time, but the alternative is to hole up and keep your art to yourself. Have you looked down your nose at any opportunities that you should have embraced?
The future. You have more to look forward to than most of the earth’s population.
Your computer. That’s right: the cursed keyboard where you spend so much time is a blessing. You live in the Internet age and can share your art with the world. Remind yourself how lucky you are to have it as a marketing tool.
Libraries and museums. You can check out free books from your local library and almost anything through interlibrary loan. Likewise, museums are a cheap source of entertainment and brain food and many of them have free entry on designated days.
Video rentals and online viewing. You can order almost any art film through Netflix these days. Check out Camille Claudel, How to Draw a Bunny, and the PBS art:21 series.
Watch some terrific videos online just by searching for your favorite artist or topic. This analysis of a Barnett Newman painting is very interesting. (Look up other videos on that site while you’re there.)
Community. We may never meet face to face, but I am grateful that you invite my newsletter into your inbox each week, that you comment on the Art Biz Blog, and that we interact on Facebook.
Thank you for making my work seem less like a job and more like home. Happy Thanksgiving to you and those you hold dear.
What else are you grateful for?