Can I make money as artist or writer?

“The only way you could truly, really fail is if you give up – you’re going to run into some roadblocks, you’re going to run into some hard times, you’re going to run into some things which are going to discourage you from moving forward in your art career – but if you already give up in your mind before you even start – how are you going to make it through that roadblock?”   – Rafi

The whole question of making money as a creative is scarey biscuits – and a major fear for those going into creative, self-employed work.  This is one of the main objections people will bring up at the very mention of the idea.  It’s a serious, important consideration.  And it’s dealt with in one video online, in an entertaining way – in response to someone asking The Question.

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question on making living from art

Rafi – with occasional, always incisive comments from the background by his wife, Klee  – engages directly with this.  Along the way, they tackle the concern of being a bit shy (normal, expected attitude for an artist, apparently) and the fact that “a steady job” doesn’t always turn out to be a steady form of income, as Ravi has been through one employer going out of business and another refusing to give him timeoff on medical grounds – then sacking him when he took that needed time.

At the same time, he happily agrees that if for you, you definitely want to do a standard job for basic income – fine, but in the time you’re not at that job, to be working on your art career.

(Rafi is a great communicator – he looks a trifle hippie/millennial in the still from the video – but look at those eyes, they’re gleaming with intelligence and he’s quick to smile and laugh).

“The more artwork that you create, the more possibility there is that you can sell it.” he says, somewhat optimistically.  However, he is very realistic about how it’s difficult to sell art at frist, you have to live with little means – and you also have to persist through this stage, to build a market for your work.

Creative Takeaways

This is a great, positive, encouraging video for pursuing a creative career path, yet also realistic to have low expectations of earning potential.  However, it’s incredibly clear that Rafi and his wife are having fun with their lives, so that’s heartening to see.

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2 comments

    • you are so welcome! I’ve been on a bit of a binge watch of his videos, and I think they’re good advice from good people and a lot of fun. (I do enjoy the quips from Klee in the background)

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