Follow Follow Follow
Interview Assessment #4
Name of Professional: Jose Ignacio Alvarado
Profession/Title: Architect and Sculptor
Date of Interview: April 26, 2018
This sculptor is from Venezuela; he has been all over the world showcasing his art. What blows my mind is that he had the time to talk to me. He only spoke in Spanish, but because I already speak it and his daughter was there to translate anything, there was no need to worry. I was interviewing him for my final product. I wanted to know about the different communities he has interacted with.
Mr. Alvarado explained that to reach an audience in whatever country he is in, he needs to understand the culture. When one has a general understanding of another culture, they can sympathize and communicate with that culture. He went on to point out the differences Frisco has from Venezuela as an example.
Venezuela, Mr. Alvarado explained, knows color. It plays a large role in the way its people see the world. In Frisco, however, the focus lies elsewhere. I fully understood him; Frisco is filled with the same few colors: black, white-beige, red, and brown. From my time in Mexico, I remember seeing more colors than I could count. It was is one of the main differences I noted from when I moved here from Brazil. I am sure Mr. Alvarado was just as surprised as I.
Nonetheless, what stood out was his advice. Mr. Alvarado passionately spoke of how one’s community can affect his or her art. He explained that to create thoughtful and meaningful art, the artist needs to understand their community and surroundings. These stimuli reflect the way a large group of people may feel; one’s art should convey that in their art. Mr. Alvarado explained art should touch people’s sense of humanity and allow them to reflect on their emotions.
It seems so stupidly obvious, but it is something I have struggled to understand; all artist reflect their environment. People’s art, in whatever form or medium, illustrates an aspect of their society. One example would be the more abstract art that followed both world wars. Europe at the time felt lost and dispassionate. The art reflected that disillusionment and new-found cynicism in its careless and oftentimes absurd nature. In essence, we are all a reflection of our environment; albeit a dirty and misshapen one. Every person contains some aspect that differentiates them from their society, but regardless, that environment can sculpt the way one sees themselves and others when comparing their differences.
The interview with Mr. Alvarado was inspiring. I feel a sense of motivation I have been lacking in the past few weeks. Really, I want and ought to search for these general ideas and themes that are prevalent in my society and find ways to express them. All I really need to do is reflect on my emotions and attitude towards life and compare it to others. This, admittedly, generalistic approach will at the very least allow me to begin employing meaning in my work.
I am undeniably excited. I do not feel bound by technique or my environment; in fact, I feel as though I am beginning to understand art. Abstract art does not feel as “abstract” anymore, and expression feels like something I can relate to. Art is finally becoming something more than just a way to find enjoyment and comfort.
I can do more than bring myself peace; I can reach out and connect with people. I can communicate and share my ideas with them. I can invite them to question our world. Together, we can try to make sense of the often-confusing world we live in. I know it sounds cliche, but I get it. I get it. Not to mention, I want to converse and connect with people through my art, and the first step to doing so will be to begin examining my own life and environment. I can use my art to just that. To do so I need to continue following Ms. Vernon’s advice: “Paint. Paint. Paint.” and now also Mr. Alvarado’s “Follow. Follow. Follow”. Pursuing that consistency is key. Art is something more; I feel impactful. If not in anyone else’s life, then in my own. If I keep trying again and again, at the very least, I will know I have put my whole effort into what I love.
Interview Assessment #3
Name of Professional: Misty Foster
Profession/Title: Freelance Painter
Business/Company name: Fresh Paints
Date of Interview: January 25, 2018
I do not know if interview is the right term; it was more like a conversation. Do not misunderstand me, we spoke of art. We spoke of the business of art. Mrs. Foster shared her experience painting walls and murals; she told me of how her business spread through word of mouth more than anything else. What stood out from other interviews was that we went a bit deeper.
Mrs. Foster said that art is a life-long journey of improvement. In art, and life for that matter, challenges constantly swarm us. They help define and mold us; they build us up. Mrs. Foster explained that these challenges change artists’ way of thinking. They become focused on cultivating that improvement and using it to grow. I found that this connects to my thoughts that the challenges Ms. Vernon provided allowed me to develop and drastically better myself. It also illustrates that improvement-centered mindset that I have held for the last year is something I developed through the hurdles imposed on me in ISM and art. In a way it affirms that my constant dedication to improvement is a beneficial trait to have.
Another point of conversation we had was in regards to what creates talent. Mrs. Foster spoke of it as something developed over time. She stated that interest motivates improvement, and this improvement is what creates talent. In a sense, it should be something to be worked at; it will never be perfect. It made me realize that it painters have a different mindset; it is another way to see the world. Following this way of thinking allows an artist to grow more than they could otherwise.
What I realized as after our interview is that art should not be relegated to just that, but everything. Ms. Vernon once said, “artist are the best problem solvers,” that quality can be useful just about everywhere. Artists work to better themselves and the world around them; their mindset is not just for art. If one carries it to other fields they may improve on that also. What Mrs. Foster said validates Ms. Vernon’s statement. It makes me think of art as a mechanism for betterment. Regardless where I end up, it could foster me to grow and make the best of where I am at.
It is incredibly encouraging to think art can also connect to my life. Art can be used to help me improve as a painter and person. I would like to be conscious of that. To do so I must focus on the challenges it brings; I must embrace and reflect on what I learn from these obstacles. I sort of did that last year after painting the one hundred paintings. The experience taught me how to handle a large task and break it down. If I pay attention to these challenges and their lessons I might even be able to incorporate them into my speech. Oddly enough, writing about this excited me.
The interview was extremely encouraging. I felt as though it has helped me re-prioritise myself on bettering my faults. Moreover, it reaffirms my choices in pursuing it even if I decide not to become a painter later in life. The lessons taught by art can be used elsewhere and have provided me a great deal of fulfillment. The thought of it is motivating; it compels me to keep trying to improve despite how discouraged I might feel. By fostering this mindset I may be able to tackle my weaknesses this year. I am sure that doing so will help my mental health and determination. The only real complaint I have about the interview is that I left with little practical knowledge. That, however, feels like a nitpick compared to what I gained from it.
I feel as though I am not wasting my time, and I would like to express that in my speech. I know that by talking about the lessons painting has taught me I may be able to do so. It is true, I have learned much from painting. For instance, painting the one hundred apples and my struggles last year showed me that dedication breeds success; my efforts were not in vain. This year, through my mentor, I have learned raw skill does not match tenacity. One’s determination to keep at it will allow them to go further than talent alone ever would because it creates talent. Additionally, following what I enjoy brings me much more joy and satisfaction than anything else. Sharing this information and describing how impactful art can be outside its realm would provide a nice message to those listening that are not artists.
Interview Assessment #2
Name of Professional: Nomaan Mohammed
Business/Company name: BrookHaven College
Date of Interview: October 23, 2017
Good art is based off the guidelines provided by education; great art challenges these guidelines. Education provides an artists with rules which allow them to better develop their art. However, to create truly revolutionary art, an artist must break these guidelines. The interesting aspect of this is that to break rules one must know them. At least, this is what I believe; from what I could gather, Mr. Mohammed, my interviewee, seems to agree.
He stressed the importance of education in formulating a painter’s artstyle and and purpose. What stood out, though were the other benefits Mr. Mohammed spoke of during our interview. The most important would be the environment provided by an educational setting. The other artists, the professors, and textbooks all bombard a painter with vital information. This knowledge and criticism provides a challenging environment for a painter to truly flourish. The setting encourages development and propels artists towards finally being able to create great art.
Knowing this validates my views on the necessity of a college education for my future. I seek to create the best art I possible can; the environment provided by education will provide this. Although, I will admit, this is not new knowledge. I could tell from working in Ms. Vernon’s class last year and from my art classes in school, that an education environment is great for me to develop. Every art course I have taken has taught me valuable lessons that have ensured my development as a painter, student, and even as a person. Nevertheless, it does not hurt to recognize and emphasise this benefit. I will be going to college soon, so it is vital that I make it a worthwhile venture; this interview has justified my choice to follow this passion into college.
Not that I need validation in my choices. I want to follow my passions regardless of the risks, and would do so even if this interview argued against it. However, it is calming and motivating to know professionals agree with my choices. The idea that people support my endeavors is wonderful; it soothes the nerves. When I heard Mr. Mohammed agree with my statements, I felt that refreshing chill that resembled the feeling of eating ice cream on a warm day; it relaxed and inspired me. Knowing this also provides me with more drive to seek out specific programs and mentorships that will provide me with an education environment. Really, it encourages me to be more specific in my choices and research more before delving into college.
This is something I have already begun doing as I apply for colleges; now I am only more inspired to further seek out this setting. I will surely conduct further research on the best courses for me and seek out interviewers and a mentor that will challenge me. I want to be taught by someone who fosters improvement; the best way to find that person is through research and networking. I already have an idea of the professional I will ask to be my mentor, and like last year, I believe they will promote my growth through challenge. My next step is to take initiative.
Interview Assessment #1
Name of Professional: Zahra Jahanyfard
Profession/Title: Freelance Painter
Business/Company name: Bahar Studio
Date of Interview: October 13, 2017
Ms. Jahanyfard thoroughly impressed me; I have never seen a more organized person in my life. She has managed to make painting her full-time job, which, if you ask any artists, is a grand achievement. During our interview she revealed her intense planning that allows her to make her passion a viable career. Not only did Ms. Jahanyfard prove someone can make a living off painting, but she showed me that everyone knows how to do so. What inhibits artists from becoming successful is their dedication, nothing more.
I began the interview trying to learn more about how guilds work, but the conversation drastically changed in a span of minutes. Ms. Jahanyfard began sharing how she makes a living off art, and from then on that was the focus of our interview. She shared that, instead of working a part-time job, she creates murals, charcoal portraits, and commissions. Usually people would find it difficult to create a steady income off that type of work, but, through great networking and thorough planning, Ms. Jahanyfard manages to successfully make a living off her art. Admittedly, this kind of work is not what she is passionate about, but it provides her with enough attention to garner an audience for whom she introduces her actual style of persian-inspired paintings. The attention she gained off her commissioned work or, as she like to call it, her daytime job also allows her to display the paintings she actually enjoys in galleries and art shows.
What I find fascinating about Ms. Jahanyfard, what I believe I can most learn from and apply in my own life, is her planning. Ms. Jahanyfard has a mindmap that details everything she wants to accomplish in a month, a calendar that details her events for every two weeks, a contact book filled with artists’ business cards, and a contact book with all the businesses she plans to work for. This planning is incredibly reminiscent of the requirements we are required to meet in our ISM portfolios, only it is tailored for an artist. What Ms. Jahanyfard has made clear is that everything I am taught in ISM is useful for artists. If I can manage to work and plan as well as Ms. Jahanyfard, then I will undoubtedly thrive in ISM and in my future career.
Planning this way allows an artist to not only make a sustainable income, but to also follow their passion. It allows someone to contact as many people as possible and provides them with something to keep track of what they have and seek to accomplish. Interestingly, this planning is not difficult to do; however, there is a great deal of dedication required to use this effectively. Honestly, I already knew part of this; after all, it is what I discussed in my speech last year. Nevertheless, now that I have been reminded of the importance of planning and networking, all I have left to do is dedicate myself to pursuing it.
The best way to use what Ms. Jahanyfard has taught me is by trying it myself. I could apply to different shows and events in my area and even join the Visual Art Guild of Frisco, or at the very least, attend their meetings as a guest. Maybe if I record the process of applying for various different events and shows in a video or essay I could use that product as my Original Work. The idea would be to put my name out there to as many different people as I can and see where that will bring me. There is not a single doubt in my mind at this point; I feel reinvigorated. I can become a painter, and I want to try. Challenging myself in this way could provide me with the ability to answer the ever looming question in my mind: can I, especifically, find a way to make my passion my job?
My next step is to begin researching different shows, events, galleries, and meetings I could apply to. I also need to, during my interviews, ask about these events. After accumulating all this information, I can begin narrowing down which shows I want to participate on. From there onwards I need to apply and follow through with my plan. Of course, I do not want to stress myself out, so I will begin with a few shows. Afterwards I may slowly apply to more and more events. Honestly, I feel excited. Ms. Jahanyfard is one of the people I have interview that has successfully made her passion her job. Every time I converse with someone like her, I gain a surge of motivation because people like her remind me that passion can be the driving force of someone’s life.
Interview Assessment #6
Name of Professional: Barbara Mason
Company: Dragonfly Studio Creations
Date of Interview: 12/2/16
For my sixth interview, I discussed the business of painting with Barbara Mason. I had heard Mrs. Mason was an incredibly successful painter, so I was looking forward to see how she branded herself. I felt learning about branding would be incredibly beneficial for a couple of reasons: branding is incredibly useful in establishing an audience. It allows the painter not just to sell their paintings, but also their brand. I reasoned that if I brand myself well people will look forward to buying not just a painting, but my painting.
Our interview centered heavily on initiative. Mrs. Mason explained the only reason she succeeded in art was because of her initiative. By stepping out of her comfort zone, Mrs. Mason was able to challenge herself and create opportunities. What this means for me is taking initiative to enter shows, contests, local events, and networking, all of which can be astonishingly beneficial to a painter. For example, by going to a local event and meeting up with artists, a painter is able to showcase their artwork and network. Personally, after talking to Mrs. Mason a few weeks after our interview, she offered to allow me to join one of the local art organizations of Frisco. This showed me how important initiative is. If I had not taken the initiative to contact Mrs. Mason and established her as a contact, I would have never been given this opportunity. This event inspired me want to take initiative to maintain the contacts I have made throughout ISM. Admittedly, this is rather difficult. I do not know how I can find the time to do this. With school and ISM, I barely have enough time to contact my mentor, Ms. Vernon. It seems almost impossible, but honestly, that matters little. If I take the initiative, then I will find time to communicate with painters. So I will challenge myself and dedicate my time to maintaining a relationship with those I have interviewed this year alongside all my other commitments.
Something surprising during our interview was that Mrs. Mason stressed that it is important for me to learn digital art. She explained that as technology improves, new methods of creating art will be invented. It is important to learn as many of these as possible because they will give the artist flexibility and an edge against their competition. I found this somewhat worrisome. I have always struggled with digital art, so I will definitely find it hard to learn it. However, I do plan to explore it. Maybe not this year, but the next for sure. Next year I plan to take ISM II; there I will explore Concept Art, which is heavily focused on digital art. I know some friends who could teach me the basics of digital art, and Mr. Howard, my first interviewee, is adept at digital art as well. I hope these contacts will enable me to learn and improve upon my skills as a painter and digital artist.
A recurring aspect of painting from my interview with Mrs. Mason was that of networking. Mrs. Mason explained that an overwhelming amount of sales involve engaging with artists. She stated networking is invaluable in providing opportunities. I found this rather interesting. A large portion of my time in ISM, especially when I was in search of a mentor, was spent on talking to painters. I discussed what it takes to be a painter and asked for some contacts that my interviewees would be willing to share. This was an incredible way to learn about painting and it gave me many different opportunities.
I believe that networking allowed me to thrive in ISM; however in this next semester, I will not be given as many opportunities to do so. Most of my time will be spent on my final product, and that will definitely detract me from networking. So I hope to take the initiative to network throughout this course. I will, as I stated earlier, create time to communicate with different painters. I believe that these connections, advice, and support from fellow artists will undoubtedly be just as, if not more, useful in helping me thrive this semester.
Name of Professional: Norm Cox
Profession: Graphic Designer
Company: Cox & Hall
Date of Interview: 11/20/16
For my fifth interview I interviewed Norm Cox, a graphic designer. I was looking forwards to learning more about marketing during this interview; I had heard and read Mr. Cox was incredibly successful in the subject. I am looking into marketing for my original work. Marketing is important in establishing guidelines for my future self in how to follow a career in art. I believe some sort of plan is needed for me to successfully explore a career like painting.
My interview with Mr. Cox consisted mostly on adaptability. Mr. Cox told me to take every course I find interesting during my time in college. He explained it would help me discover other passions that could aid me in finding a career right for me. Having a varied experience makes it easy to adapt those skills into other aspects of art, such as marketing. I found this exciting. I have always been a person open to new topics and courses, such as history. This encourages me to look further into my passion and find truly learn exactly what I want to pursue as a career. Mr. Cox also stressed the importance of adaptability in branding one’s self. He explained that one should adapt their style and personality to their website. Not only does it help in providing originality, but it also introduced the artist to those visiting the website. This information was slightly daunting. I have not fully developed a style or a specific brand for myself, so I feel this is something I need to work on. I need to consistently develop myself in order to figure out exactly how I want to show myself to the world. For that reason I plan to focus more on creating art rather than other aspects of being a painter.
Something completely unexpected that Mr. Cox stressed was the importance of writing in any career. He stated that without writing someone cannot communicate effectively and their ideas will never be understood. This makes sense, communication is vital in any career, and if I am unable to communicate effectively it could hurt me severely. This information makes me glad I am taking this class because it is teaching me exactly what I need. The large focus of writing and communication this class has is incredibly beneficial in developing was Mr. Cox values so deeply. This information means in addition to focusing on creating art I will also continue developing my writing.
I found that a recurring theme with Mr. Cox was dedication and improvement. To be a successful artist one needs to be dedicated to developing themselves constantly. He states that an artist’s main focus should be developing their art and passions. I found this heartwarming. That is what I want to do. I want to develop a distinct style and enjoy myself in my work. I remember Mr. Cox said, “luck is nothing more than preparation.” I have been developing myself and preparing for my future throughout this year; I will continue to do so to an even greater degree.
The most surprising thing I learned from Mr. Cox was how he described the aspect of niches in art. He stated that every successful artist finds a niche, like in of his friends who paints golf courses. These artists usually find a niche that has a loyal following that will buy their paintings. The best part about this is that usually the niche is something the artists love to paint. I still have not developed a distinct style, but when I do, I hope to find a niche that enjoys it.
Name of Professional: Misty Foster Oliver
Date of Interview: 10/28/16
I interviewed Misty Oliver Foster on my fourth interview. I was looking forwards to learning about how artists develop themselves over time, so many of my questions were about Mrs. Foster’s journey over the years. Knowing how certain people got to where they are at is incredibly valuable in determining my own path as an artist. I believe knowing the way I want to mold my own path could be beneficial in seeing if painting is my passion.
As the interview began Mrs. Foster explained the advantages and disadvantages of community colleges and universities. Community colleges are good for those unsure of pursuing art, while Universities ensure a higher education. However, Universities’, as Mrs. Foster explained, early education has a slower start. What was surprising is that, according to Mrs. Foster, Colleges do not teach artists how to make a living as artists. Mainly because art is an incredible diverse and unique field. However, there are some ways to excel in art, such as dedication towards improvement and being genuine with my work. Those that motivate themselves to keep creating the best art they can are those that are the most experienced, and therefore, successful. It is also important to learn what kind of art most interests me. That is what I am trying to do in this course. I want to discover my art style and improve on it. Hopefully I can do something similar to that in my final project.
Another interesting aspect of art to learn about was Mrs. Foster’s past experience as an ISM mentor. She explained that, when working with Abby Ludman, she wanted to focus on the practical aspect of art rather than art itself. Which is encouraging to think of because that is what I have been trying to learn about my entire time in ISM. I know I can learn how about art itself in school, but it is much harder to learn how to make a living in art, so that is what I have focused on for the most part. However, I am satisfied about with the information I have on making a living as an artist. I want to focus more on what I will do as an artist; my art style, my prefered field of art, my strengths and, my weaknesses. I find that developing myself feels much more rewarding than looking into the distant future. Maybe it is because of quicker gratification, maybe it is not a good quality to have, but I still look to focusing on the present and what I can improve. Of course I still am looking into the future, it is why I took this course, but the present is what is easiest for me to improve on.
Speaking of improvement, something I gathered over Mrs. Foster’s story is that painting is an incredibly personal job, which is centered on improvement. Improvement of skill, advertisement, and of self. I relate to this in a way. I have always focused on improvement my whole life. I plan to continue this in ISM and in my future. In that sense painting works well with me. Painting involves looking deeply into one’s self and how to improve one’s self. That is what I want to do. I want to explore my strengths and weaknesses so that I can improve on them. Art is the best way to do that.
The most surprising thing I learned was a thought I had about a few things Mrs. Foster said. She mentioned everything was designed, from a building, to a painting, everything is designed. Which gives the encouraging feeling that a person can do an endless amount of work in art. However, as Mrs. Foster put it, art is a “Feast or Famine” job. People can go months without work and months with too much work. This sort of paradoxical nature of art is intriguing and terrifying at the same time, yet it only makes me want to continue exploring the field. I want truly dedicate myself to art so that I may learn if it is right for me.
Name of Professional: Robert Rohm
Date of Interview: 10/24/16
My third interview was conducted with Robert Rohm, an experienced painter. From the interview, I was hoping to learn about how artists advertise and get their work recognition. I have studied a fair amount about what is important in the field of art, but I have never looked into what people actually do in the field. If I want to work in the field of art, it is important to learn about what artists actually do as part of their work.
During the interview, I learned the basics of how galleries work. I was introduced to the mindset of how to begin advertising myself in galleries. I would have to being small. Visit small galleries and shows, but I would also have to make sure they are respected galleries. It is important to show people that I want to be a serious artist. Over time I would begin moving up in galleries to bigger and better galleries, with the end goal of prestigious galleries that would give me recognition. Not only did I learn about the value of galleries, but also of the value of identity. An artist needs to know what they enjoy working with, and do that. They need to be informed in the style and techniques they use. This quite encouraging, Knowing myself would help in how I would tackle competitions in preparing myself to improve. To me this means that if I set my mind to improvement and originality, I can, and will, achieve success.
I was not only taught the basics of being an artist, but also how to be a successful artist. Only the most unique artists are successful and those were rare. As Mr. Rohm put it, art is a personal career, that involves experimentation. An artist has to make sure they do not follow trends. They need to work on what they enjoy because that is what will not only satisfy them, but also sell. This is monumental for me. I see now, being an artist, of any kind, is different from being anything else. If I want to follow my passion, that is what I should do. I should not conform to what is popular and what will sell. I have to follow my passion in the fullest extent, which means to do what I enjoy, and what I am best at. I will for sure, in the future, look to find exactly what I enjoy most about art, and improve on that above all else.
I also managed to learn about the tough challenges of being a painter. It seems pretty much all artists are forced into secondary jobs. To put it simply, it is what pays the bills. Mr. Rohm showed me to schools of thought over the subject. The first is that an artist should pick a secondary job to do with art, this is what Mr. Rohm does, because it is what they are experienced in and what they enjoy; it might even inspire the artist. The other is that an artist should get a job away from art simply to avoid being burnt out from art. This is the most discouraging aspect of the work to me, this almost ensurance of a second job. It means I must do my best to avoid having a secondary job, but also be prepared to do so.
The most invigorating part of my interview with Mr. Rohm was discussing history. He explained to me he is a history buff, to be specific, an art history buff. He explained learning art history is useful in learning of art’s evolution and to see what resonates with you. This is incredibly interesting, I love history, and this would give me an opportunity to study history and learn more about art at the same time. It seems every artist I talk to is incredibly passionate about what they do, which inspires me to do the same.
Name of Professional: Gail Greenoe
Date of Interview: 10/05/16
My second interview was conducted with Gail Greenoe, a fairly new (Freelance) Painter. From the interview, I was hoping to learn how to get started in the world of painting and the challenges artists face on a daily basis. I have the most experience on traditional art than anything else, so it would be the easiest to begin learning from; however, it is also the toughest field, of those I am interested (concept art and painting), to get into. For that reason I am interested in interviewing artists, to see how they are able to keep a stable income. When it comes to picking what my project will be about, I want to be as knowledgeable as possible about every subject I am considering.
During my interview I learned about the dangers of art. Ms. Greenoe detailed the scale of investment that comes into art. When an artist decides to get started they have to invest a large sum of money on supplies, then proceed to be unpaid until they gain recognition of galleries, which still might not sell their work. Ms. Greenoe herself after almost three years is, as she said, “in the red.” For that reason most artists have rooms converted into studies where they work from. Many of them have different jobs and struggle to get paid. This is demoralizing. It scares me to think that following my passion might leave me in a place where I am forced to work odd jobs to pay rent; without ever getting a chance to do what I enjoy.
This interview mirrored my first interview in that Ms. Greenoe stressed how important it is to promote one's self. To maintain any income an artist needs to advertise themselves well. They need to maintain attention on them to sell their work. It sounds difficult, yet Ms. Greenoe says she still believes this is the best time to be an artist. Creating a website and a brand is easy through the use of social media, which can cast a domino effect. If an artist is noticed by one person, then that person will share the artist's work, which will cascade into the artist becoming fairly well noticed. I find this incredibly encouraging. This interview showed me that I need to create a unique brand. I need to show myself as a different artist, one of a kind. That way I am able to attract others and then try to keep a solid relationship with those that enjoy my art. Even if millions of artists surround me, I still have a chance to to be successful.
It seems in every field of art it is invaluable to advertise one’s self well. Moreover, there also seems to be a need to be prepared to have to work those “odd jobs” that I fear. I am not alone in that fear though. Ms. Greenoe explained many artists face that fear. It seems to be common to have doubt, but Ms. Greenoe emphasized how an artist needs vigor. For me to succeed I need to follow my passion endlessly. Giving up seems to be what kills artists, so I will strive to never stop following my passions.
The most surprising aspect of my interview was Ms. Greenoe’s journey. She graduated with a Commercial art degree (now known as a Graphic Design Degree) because she was afraid to fully committing to art, but soon went back to college and got a Art Education degree. She worked for years, and a few years ago decided she wanted to fully commit to art. She converted a room to a studio and set to work relearning to paint. She spent the last few years honing her skills in preparation to begin painting with other professionals. Her story is motivating, she, despite years of expertise in other fields decided to follow her passion. This only reinvigorates my desire to do the same.
Name of Professional: Howard Kelley
Profession: Storyboard Artist
Date of Interview: 09/29/16
My first interview was conducted with Howard Kelley, a Freelance Commercial Storyboard Artist. I was hoping to learn exactly what storyboard artists did and how a freelance job worked from the interview. Being unsure about the exact field of art I was want to pursue, I hoped to learn what differentiated storyboarding from other forms of art. I believe learning about a diverse set of jobs careers enables me to make an informed decision about what I would like to pursue.
During the interview, I learned the basics of freelance work. I was introduced to the importance of networking in freelance. Social skills are necessary in building relationships with those who will possibly hire the artist. Mr. Kelley explained that a director is more likely to hire whomever he or she has worked with in the past, whom he or she knows is reliable, and most importantly someone who works well with the director’s team. Not only did I learn about the value of social skills to find and secure employment, but also to build connections with other artists. There is a large sense of community between artists. Most help each other find work and new opportunities. This quite encouraging, being someone who enjoys holding conversations with others I imagine being involved in the community of artists around me could be highly beneficial to help me find employment and create lasting relationships that would enable new opportunities.
I was not only taught the basics of Freelance, but also its intricacies. Artists have to build a business. They have to advertise themselves and their work to the world. Making sure the artist is one of the first results in a google search of “storyboard artists” will allow for more opportunities to the artist. To advertise one’s self well will ensure opportunities. I find this would be incredibly fun, for a lack of a better word, to do. To put myself out in the world and be contacted by someone who wants my work would mean the world to me. So I would surely make sure I stand out among other artists when advertising myself. I have always enjoyed demonstrating myself and my work to others.
I also managed to learn about the tough challenges of Freelance work. The artists are reliant on job centers. Artist like can Mr. Kelley face months of “downtime” and other months of superfluous opportunities. Most producers will only create commercials, movies, and TV shows on whichever place is cheapest, so those who live there will find more opportunities than those who do not. This means freelance artists have to be prepared to find secondary sources for money. “Odd jobs” that will keep them sustained until new opportunities arise. This is the most discouraging aspect of the work to me, this constant pressure to make sure to have a job. That at any moment the artists could find themselves in need of money. I would never want to be in a situation where I feel like I have to work two or three jobs that have nothing to do with my passion. Which means that if I were to choose freelance work I will have to focus on building a successful business and good connections to ensure myself employment.
The most invigorating part of my interview with Mr. Kelley was discussing his story. Mr. Kelley has worked in Storyboarding for years and has sacrificed opportunities to raise his daughter in a safe environment with valuable opportunities. Most inspiring, was knowing he survived cancer, and after months of being sick went straight back to work. He did not let the disease define him. From what I gathered, he was most importantly a father, then an artist. His story is motivating and it showed me that it is normal to be insecure about the future. He showed me that all one needs to do is to take one step at a time to make sure they do their best to achieve their goals.