How do you earn a full-time living as an artist, while raising three kids, and navigating through a failed business venture? Today we find out.
Jay Alders is a professional artist, whose paintings, design work, and photography embodies the surf culture. But that alone is not what inspired me to interview him for the podcast.
I grew up with Jay. After high school, I lost touch with him, and by the time he re-emerged in my life, he was working full-time as an artist from his home studio, and a collaborator with many of creative people. He and his wife Chelsea (equally as awesome as Jay), seemed to have this strange duality:
1. They lived deeply creative lives, with a focus on appreciation, giving back, getting involved, and finding balance.
2. They were each incredibly hard workers, earning a living through pure grit and taking risks needed to create sustainability around their work.
In the past few years, I watched -- astounded -- as Jay and Chelsea had three kids back to back to back. In the blink of an eye, they went to "that cool couple that I know" to a family of five. Then, I was dumbfounded when Jay opened up a huge physical location on the Jersey shore -- a gallery and event space. I just couldn't believe how bold the vision was.
But that venture didn't make it. About a year after opening, he shut it down.
My interview today delves into a range of topics that I think are critical to anyone who wants to make a living with their creative work, while also honoring their creative process and lifestyle with those they love.
* Lessons from a failed business that actually brought him closer to his art and his family.
* How he works from his home studio, while parenting three kids, and supporting his wife who has her own business as well.
* How he finds the time (and energy) to create.
* Why he feels marketing and business are a welcome part of creative work.
* His path to going full-time as an artist.
* The value of taking care of yourself, even when you are swamped, so that you can take care of those who rely on you, and you creative work.
You can find Jay at: http://JayAlders.com
KJ Dell'Antonia made a huge shift in her career, giving up her career as a lawyer and New York City prosecutor to becoming a full-time writer. She became a columnist and contributing editor for the New York Times‘ Well Family page, amongst many other writing credentials. In this interview, we dig into the specific ways that she made the transition while also raising her family.
Colby Sharp is a teacher and advocate for the power of reading. In this interview, you will hear my incredulity Colby's amazing enthusiasm and his many collaborations. You can find Colby at @ColbySharp on Twitter and at https://sharpread.wordpress.com
Lori Richmond made a huge shift in her career -- leaving a corporate job in order to pursue her dream of becoming a children's book author-illustrator. In this interview, we go through the specific steps she took to pursue her creative vision.
This interview with artist Eric Wert perfectly encapsulates the everyday reality of the successful creative professional. The one who has created an established career, has received accolades, whose work sells for five figures, and who is well into working on their art full time. Every day is still a battle with anxiety.
Today I am excited to share my interview with sound artist Margaret Noble. I am inspired by Margaret's habits as a creative professional, especially the intentional choices she makes to improve her craft, grow as an artist, and ensure she makes time to create.
Some of what we cover in our chat:
* How she views marketing and communicating about her work as integral to improving her craft, not just as "marketing" to generate more business.
* How she moved across disciplines from dance, to DJing, to art.
* The personal situations that sparked pursuit of her own artistic craft.
* How she chooses art over money.
* Her experience in collaborating with others.
* The value of teaching in improving her craft.
* How she navigates through rejection and anxiety.
* How she organizes her life
Today I'm excited to share my conversation with writer, director and producer Angela Tucker. In this interview, talk about the realities of crossing that gap from one's creative vision to making it a reality. What jumped out at me was two things:
* How many disparate projects and goals she juggles at any one time.
* How incremental everything is. From both the creative side to the funding side, her work moves forward one small commitment at a time.
Today I am chatting with documentary filmmaker Stephanie Wang-Breal. In this interview, we discuss the risks she has taken as she navigated her career, and the many ways that she make hard decisions that lead to more meaningful work.
How does a career novelist make ends meet and navigate her way through a mid-career slump? Today I can’t even tell you how excited I am to share this interview with Tammy Greenwood, author of nine novels. If you are a writer — especially if you are a novelist — I beg you to listen to this podcast. Tammy takes us behind the scenes of her writing career, and provides an unfiltered view of the reality of what it means to write every day, and and publish nine books.
Today I am thrilled to share my interview with Jeremy Chernick, a special effects designer for Broadway productions, Cirque Du Soleil projects, museum installations, music videos, TV, and film. Basically, Jeremy makes it snow, rain, burn, bleed and explode on stage. He has worked with J&M Special Effects since 2006. In our discussion, we cover:
* Breaking big creative risks down into management moments.
* How lots of bad ideas are a part of the creative process.
* Communication, and the agreement you make with your audience.
* The pressure of creating the spectacular.
* The part of the creative process that no one wants.
* His creative career journey.
* How his personal life affects his professional life, now that he is a father.
Debbie Ridpath Ohi writes and illustrates books for young people. In our chat, we discuss:
* How she took a huge risk in leaving her safe corporate job to pursue a creative career.
* Her path to becoming a full-time writer and illustrator.
* How she got the opportunity to illustrate the most recent Judy Blume reissues.
* How she deals with both positive and negative feedback.
* How she approaches social media, and why she finds it to be an essential part of her career.
* Her productivity tips and an in-depth look at her creative process.
How does one person going from being a painfully shy child who barely spoke five words per day in school, to being a well-known children's book blogger, librarian and author? In today's interview, I chat with Betsy Bird, who takes us through her experience going from an introvert as a child, to someone who shares so much of herself online, and even — unintentionally — courts controversy in the book world.
For the past six years, Andrea Lekberg has run The Artist Baker, a boutique bakery & cafe in Morristown, New Jersey. In this interview, we discuss when she knew to take a big risk in her career, how she prepared for success, and the value of developing your art and community, not just your business.
Angie Pickman took a big leap, and completely failed. She opened a restaurant in Brooklyn that bled money, and closed six months later. What she did after that moment is inspiring: she turned that failure into a new opportunity, and then made a massive shift to do the unthinkable: make a living as as a cut paper artist.
Today I'm speaking with Rachel Fershleiser, who describes herself this way, "I'm someone who gets really psyched about books on the internet, and I help others do it too." I am so inspired by not just the scope of Rachel's work over the years, but how much she is an enthusiastic champion for others.
What Julia Fierro has accomplished is astounding, she is the author of Cutting Teeth and the forthcoming The Gypsy Moth Summer, she runs the Sackett Street Writers' Workshop which has had more than 2,500 writers pass through it in more than 12 years, she is a teacher, has been published in many prominent magazines & media outlets, and is a wife and mother of two. What makes her accomplishments so much more intriguing is how open she has been about her struggles with anxiety and OCD.
Sarah Bray is a living embodiment of the 1,000 true fans ethos; She has a thriving career as a creative professional, by catering to a small group of like-minds who know and appreciate her work. Just before we spoke, Sarah was thrust into a career transition when she was laid off from her job. In this discussion, we explore her process of working through risk, and how she is driven by creating a meaningful body of work.
How can one woman not only manage five huge projects/businesses, but do so in a way that empowers other creative professionals to grow their craft and earn more revenue? Today, I talk to Tina Roth Eisenberg, who runs temporary tattoo company Tattly (with 14 employees), a monthly meetup series (in 100+ countries) CreativeMornings, a to-do list app called TeuxDeux, a collaborative workspace called StudioMates, and the popular design blog Swiss-Miss.com.
In this interview, Dan Blank speaks with Barb Short, who recently opened up an independent bookstore. We discuss how she found the energy to take what some called a "crazy idea," and make it a reality, despite having a full-time job, and being the single parent to two kids.