Where do I sit on the Artistic Proficiency scale and how to introduce $revenue into the equation.

As you will be aware if you have followed any of my work, I practice multiple forms of Art. Not only am I a trumpeter, electronic musician and producer, I also write books and blogs, I create, film and edit short movies and vlog style videos, I draw digital cartoons and I am a photographer. I practice each of these 5 Art forms to differing degrees of proficiency, with trumpet playing being at the very top of the proficiency scale, cartoons towards the bottom and the others somewhere in between.

The following graph shows my years of practice as they relate to proficiency in each of my various Art forms.

From looking at this graph you could be fooled into thinking that I am a professional musician, a paid writer, a pretty decent filmmaker and photographer with a raft of customers and a widely diverse portfolio, as well as a cartoonist on the side.

You could not be further from the truth

Yes I have been a musician (Trumpeter mostly) for 40 years, and yes I can play at professional session musician levels (when I am in practice that is, which for a long time has unfortunately not been the case!). What is not true however is to say I am a professional musician. That is, I do not get paid to blow my horn, I do it for the love of it.

This much is also true of all the other Art forms on this scale, albeit in descending levels of proficiency as outlined above. Take my writing for example. I am a decent writer, I have written countless numbers of blogs and started writing multiple books, movie screenplays and poems, but none of them have been published in a way that would earn me any income.

I hope to tip the scales on this graph over the coming year/s so that the next iteration of this graph includes a 3rd dimension – €revenue earned.

Herein lies the crux of this well debated and much mulled over question asked by generations of Artists and Creators. How do I take my passions from hobbies with varying degrees of proficiency and marketability, to Business entities that would cause someone to part with their hard earned cash.

Earning $$’s from my Art is a goal I have had for many years. Not because society says I should or due to peer pressure, but because I hope to one day move away from traditional forms of employment and instead, make a comfortable living from my Art. Expressing myself creatively and connecting with a community of likeminded people, be they patrons or paying customers, is an end unto itself. Of course the primary goal of any Artist is to create Art which appeals to the self, not to the masses, and in this regard I do not attach any monetary expectations. I create for the sake of creating. Art in and of itself for its own sake has always been my direction. If something stirs my soul, makes me laugh, cry or any other emotion, it gets published. Make of it what you will.

Which brings us back to the eternal question again. How to tip the scales.

I have a number of areas I intend to focus on to aid in my quest to transition my Art from pastime to Business model. All fairly obvious and rudimentary, however they are a starting point to expand on and a set of foundations for me to build off:

  • create, engage with and grow my own community across multiple disparate platforms, with IamFoggy.com as the central hub for all community efforts and activities
    • currently a work in progress. A new community section will be appearing on this website in due course, plans for this are in the early stages
  • network with like-minded creators and pertinent/relevant partners
    • also currently a work in progress, I am researching festivals, events and conferences which could be of benefit to my plans
    • attending a music festival in September which has the opportunity to chat 1-2-1 with the Artists who are performing. No expectations going into this other than to have a good time, and hopefully meet some cool, interesting and like-minded people.
  • seek out revenue opportunities which match both my own creative values and also add value to external parties, be they local, national, or international
    • related to the findings in point 2 above. also separately I am starting to shape some ideas for marketable products I feel capable and proficient enough to create.
  • build collateral to share with prospective customers / partners to explain in a nutshell who I am and what I can offer
    • new business cards on order – for the music festival I am attending next month. Fully expecting to come home with as many cards as I went with, however it is better to have a business card and not need it, than need a business card and not have one!
    • other more wordy forms of collateral in early stages of preparation, likely to be custom made for whatever festival/event/conference I end up visiting within point 2 above

As I have more to update on this topic I will be back in touch with more info.

Thanks as always

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