The Audacity of Earning a Living Making Art

I’ll be the first to admit I’ve been slacking in the social media arena lately. I haven’t been keeping up with my blogs or my Twitter updates or my Facebook posts. It’s hard to post when you don’t have anything to show for yourself.

Here’s the thing: I haven’t had anything to post because I haven’t had time to work on anything, and it’s killing me. I have a day job, and they’re short-handed right now so my schedule has cut drastically into my artwork time (and my sleeping time and my eating time and my breathing time).

And my Facebook page has suffered for it.

I don’t really understand what’s happening there. When I don’t post for a while, I lose followers of the page. I get that. They want a page that’s more updated. I’ll post things like sketches and finished paintings and announcements about exhibits I’m in or books I’ve worked on. In between those, if I find news online that I think my followers might be interested in, I’ll post a link to that, too. I don’t post often, but when I do post something, I turn around and lose a ton of followers! Someone even accused me once of posting spam!

I don’t get it. Why do people follow my Facebook page? What do they think they’re getting when they hit the “Like” button? I’m an artist and an illustrator and a writer. I want to earn my living by making artwork. If I didn’t have to pay the bills, I’d be making artwork all the time. That’s what I’d be doing instead of sleeping and eating and breathing.

It feels like a no-win situation. I lose people when I don’t post, and I lose even more when I do. When I do post, that means I’ve had the time to make something new, but that seems to be exactly what’s turning people off.

So after much deliberation, I’ve decided I’m going to keep making art. That’s what I do and who I am. And then after I’ve made the art, I’m going to post it online, in spite of all the people getting turned off over it. I’m hoping somewhere there are people who want to see it and maybe even support it someday. I’m not going to be afraid of showing what I can do.

I’m glad I thought of that, and I thank you sincerely for listening.