San Diego artist Michael Carini of Carini Arts

How To Be A Successful Artist: How To Be A Successful You

Michael Carini on how to be a successful artist and how to be a successful you

I used to think that to be successful as an artist I had to follow a specific pre-designed plan set by those before me. I believed I had to get in the "right" shows and in front of the "right" people. But what are the "right" shows and who are the "right" people? Ultimately, deviating from the idea of a master plan is what led me to learn that I was misled all along. If I hadn't taken my own path, I never would have learned that priceless lesson.

inspirational San Diego based artist Michael Carini on how to be a successful artist

The world and those in yours are going to try to put you on a path that makes them feel comfortable. Don't take that road. For a long time I was led to believe I had to make a certain type of work to be successful. Quite frankly, I didn't want to. That wasn't the type of artist I wanted to be and it wasn't the type of work I wanted to make. I also learned that what one considers success may vary greatly from those around them. For me, success meant creating my own path and doing things my own way.

How to be a professional artist

Going against the pre-set system was scary at first. Only by separating from the standard though can you become the deviant. Only by taking your own path can you reach destinations previously uncharted. Do you want to fit in or stand out? I ultimately realized that by standing out I might not fit into the conversation and I made peace with that. I make the work I want to make when I want to make it. Sometimes I'm feeling bright. Sometimes I'm feeling dark. Sometimes I'm feeling complex. Sometimes I'm feeling simple. Sometimes I want to use words. Sometimes I have no words. Leading up to this pandemic, I was creating a certain type of work. When I walk out of this, I'm going to be creating a different type of work. The world can try to box me in, contain or compartmentalize me...but as soon as they think they have me...that's when I'll do something you never expected. I create what I feel...whatever I feel...whenever I feel it. That's why I am who I am. That's why I am what I am. Never apologize for being you. Apologize for the times you are not.

Quarantine log and times of reflection to help find yourself by Michael Carini and Carini Arts

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