On blogging and being a better artist
Today is the second birthday of my blog, and, in the last two years, my forum has done me more good than I could have imagined.
Starting out, I knew a thing or two about blogs. For one thing, they’re supposed to be wickedly hard to keep up; for another, they’re meant to help artists connect with people by turning their websites into conversations instead of brochures. But, after two years of keeping up and connecting, it’s clear that my blog is much more than that to me.
I’ve always had a tendency to talk too much. And that’s fine in my everyday life, but fairly early on in my career I realized that it wouldn’t fly in the professional sphere. I needed to distill my message and myself into a more easily understood package. I had to figure out just how I wanted to come across to people—whether that was clients, venues, or journalists. I struggled with this a good deal before I started my blog, but, once Face Making got rolling, I began to develop a voice. I learned to edit out the less interesting bits and to phrase things just how I wanted them.
And that means that when the Portland Business Journal calls wanting to interview me for an article about artists and the recession, I am more prepared than I might otherwise be. And that makes the journalist’s questions more fun than intimidating.
I love blogging about my painting process by including step-by-step images of my work in as many posts as possible, but that was something I knew I would do before I started Face Making. It wasn’t until I embraced the discipline of posting an article once or twice a week that I realized that I have a lot more than process shots that I want to talk about. I soon started writing about the business of art and copyright law as well as portraiture’s special challenges.
Through my blog, I discovered that I could still talk too much, but at least now I’m learning how to say a lot more…!