A Call To Action

Posted in Observations

I believe that creativity can peacefully and profitably co-exist with business.

But that’s not going to happen until we own up to the notion that the core skills we need to be an artist–even a genius artists–are not sufficient to be a successful artist.  Gifts and talents in the artistic realm don’t guaranty success in the commercial realm.

Seth Godin, an extraordinary marketer who isn’t known for pulling his punches, said it best: “Those struggling artists at the local craft faire are struggling because they don’t have the guts or the wherewithal to take their work to the next level.”

While Seth might be right about what’s holding us back, I believe that if you’re willing to learn about yourself, focus on your strengths, delegate your weaknesses to pros & monitor their work, and remember to ship, you just might be able to enjoy your success.

Heck, even art schools are finally getting into the act.  CCA in San Francisco, Ringling College of Art and Design in Sarasota, Parsons New School and Pratt in New York City, and Savannah College of Art and Design in Georgia now offer programs designed to teach not just how to think visually, but how to communicate in the language of business.

If art schools are doing it, don’t you think “all this talk of commerce” merits looking into?

An artist who understands both the creative and the business worlds, and who can clearly articulate their value to others, is much more likely to bridge the gap between creativity and business success.

You might call this person an artrepreneur.  Or an entreprenartist.  I prefer the infinitely more pronounceable profitably creative. What you choose to call this type of well-rounded person matters less than choosing to be this person.

Photo by Evan Long