5 Steps to Turn Negative Artist Thoughts into Positives! by M Theresa Brown

"My work is better than that!"

We've all said or thought it. And we probably meant it. But what it really means, when all is said and done, is that we are, at some level, envious of that other artist. So how can we turn this negative thought into a productive, positive action that benefits your art career?

It happens to all artists at some point in their art journeys and careers...A stronger word might even be Jealousy.

When we see an artist making money or gaining recognition, and whose work, we feel, is beneath our own talent, abilities and performance, career jealousy slips to the forefront.

The envy may be cloaked in indignation or supercilious behavior or a scathing critique but no matter how you cut it, it is jealousy nonetheless!

Career jealousy is common. But rather than letting it consume you , you can choose to use it to your advantage. All it truly takes is a change in your attitude and thinking.

Think of the following self defeating comments and ask yourself if you have heard these or said them yourself.,

"If I have to stoop to THAT, I won't create at all!" or

"I can do that if I put my mind to it!" or the really popular declaration,

"I won't sell out just to make money!"

What you are really saying is that you are afraid to try. Simply put, by not trying, you have not failed.

Psychologist call this uniquely human trait, the "fear of failure."

But let's look at the consequences of this thinking. Does anyone actually care if you don't create? Who, exactly, are you hurting with that attitude? Your fans? What fans? They don't know you exist. You are only hurting yourself or fooling yourself that you are what you think you are! And that is the underlying point in the jealousy issue. It is far safer and easier to criticize the efforts of another artist than improve your own artistic techniques or get out and market yourself!

So how can an artist get past the roadblock of career envy and begin to reap the rewards of success?

1. Make an attitude adjustment: Jealousy of others happens. Push it aside if you want to succeed!

2. Learn from the marketing efforts of the successful artist. What are they doing that you are not?

3. Make a Business plan for success in your art field with your art product

4. Keep your negative thoughts to yourself. Don't walk up to a marketing artist or post comments on the Internet with an insulting attitude. It is the most childish form of jealousy.

5. Determination, perseverance and positiveness need to be your new motto!

An artist happy in his own skin is a pleasure to be around. A jealous artist is an emotional drain and a detriment to himself and to his friends. Take steps not to become that unhappy one. Distance yourself from the negative artist!

If you find your thoughts turning to unproductive envy, turn those thoughts to positive action! Once hard work, perseverance and positiveness replace the negative attitudes, you will be well on your way to pushing the career stumbling blocks of jealousy into the background. The new changes will be life altering for you, your family and your new fans!

Art Career Experts


Remember to Play by Cheryl Whitestone

Philip Morsberger in his studio, August 18, 2010

Recently I visited The Morris Museum of Southern Art in Augusta Georgia with a group of fellow artists and art enthusiasts. The curator generously arranged a studio visit for us with Philip Morsberger . 

Philip’s warehouse studio was large and well lit with flourescants, no windows. There was artwork everywhere, we all wandered around like little children getting into all of his things, and asking a zillion questions like; why is there a turtle on that mans head? What is the significance of this and that. And he patiently explained what the images popping in and out of the colorful brushstrokes meant to him. The turtle was the only pet he and his brother were allowed to have growing up, by the way.

His process is to attack the canvas with paint, no form at first only what he feel is asthetically pleasing to him. Then he steps back to sit and look at the piece. Studying it to see where the painting leads him. He said, like a child who could see animals in clouds, the process he works in is similar.
My reaction to Philip. I need to paint more freely again. There was a time I unleashed my inner crazy child and brushed, smeared, splattered paint with no care for any reality except the feel and vibration of colors and patterns. In fact I wrote a poem explaining why I had come to this conclusion.

Sail Away by Cheryl Whitestone

So sensual abstract
Colors vibrating waves of light.
Deep impulses the senses and soul interprets.
Wonderful because it is nothing yet everything.
Reminiscent and vague.
No boundaries of  mundane.
Sail me canvas, sail us
Let us wander, wonder at the sight of you.
Lost in saturated color.
The formless dance that was the artists joy.

Edible art created a few days after my field trip to Augusta
The Philip Morsberger cake, yes it was delicious too!

By the way Philip can paint realistically and had done several traditional portraits. We discussed this as he showed us some of his older work. He had classical training and was also an educator for many years. We both agreed a strong foundation in how to build and create 3 dimensions in paint was crucial to creating very dynamic artwork whether it is abstracts or impressionism. All that classical training pays off when one decides to veer off into a looser style of painting.




Defining Urban Derivatives by TMNK

The streets are talking, and a NOBODY like me  is not only listening but is adding to the conversation with a unique and compelling style of art I call "URBAN DERIVATIVES." Not content with simply "getting up" on walls and having my work seen and appreciated by the masses. And, while many find inspiration from their urban surroundings, I have begun to create art that is literally derived from the world around me. Much like his hip-hop predecessors, I'm sampling the visual poetry of urban street art, creating collaged imagery based not on magazine cut-outs, but cutouts from the streets. These new works that I call Urban Derivatives, documents and preserves urban contemporary  hieroglyphics, while adding my own unique and distinctive voice to this ongoing dialogue.

Perhaps, like impressionism, It will be come a movement that other artists will follow. Or not. I'm just happy to be leading, instead of following. Urban Derivatives for me is reinterpreting while preserving an exploding culture. It's about creating art that connects, confronts, and interacts with the audience. I'll be sharing some of my new works in this style in an exhibition that opens in Norway next week, but wanted to share it with all of you as well. Let me know what you think.


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