Wednesday, September 02, 2009
Why I Chose Pet Portraiture... Part 1
Becoming a pet portrait artist was an outgrowth of my creative interests, desires and needs at a time in my life when I had not been doing much of my own art work at all. I'd been suffering with chronic hand and wrist problems for a few years, off and on. When those issues finally calmed down, I was hungry to build something with my artwork - something new, fresh and different - something that was really "me"! Maintaining my full-time job as a graphic designer/illustrator while starting up my new venture required some serious time-management. But, with proper prioritizing, I knew I was up for the challenge. I really wanted to jump back into my artwork head-first! Starting an art business would be a great way to do that, but choosing pet portraiture in particular really changed everything. It's helped me grow in so many ways.
I had a few overall goals for my what I wanted my pet portrait business to accomplish for me:
• I wanted to create a business which would be a framework for my continuing growth as an artist. I really wanted to get back into the habit of doing artwork consistently. Creating a business with timelines and deadlines would keep me on track. I would be accountable, and working under the umbrella of a business would be all the motivation I'd need. And choosing pet portraiture for my business would keep me producing, growing and learning - I viewed it as unchartered territory, I was excited about the subject, and the road was wide open for expression. In the end, it has accomplished all of this for me, and more.
• I wanted my business to foster my communication skills. Working this way would help me to learn how to better manage clients and projects in pet portraits and beyond, and, because the way I work with my clients is one-on-one, pet portraiture by default would accomplish this. Currently, I enjoy a very collaborative, creative workflow with my clients. Personality-wise, pet people are my kind of people, too: I'm just as nuts about pets as they are, so it's a good fit.
• I wanted to be able to do something where I would be in a position to be able to use my artwork to help others. With pet portraiture, I've had the opportunity to donate something uniquely special and valuable to many dog and cat charities and rescue organizations. That feels pretty good!
Stay Tuned for Part Two!