How boring is the overly romanticized idea of a starving artist? Very. There's really nothing sexy or inspirational about being hungry, unless it involves a waifish Kate Moss. Artists don't just like to make things, they also enjoy eating and wearing clothes and stuff. Besides, it's much easier to buy a paintbrush with a paycheck than with your good looks and charm.
It makes sense then that LegalArt is presenting "Creative Ways to Make a Living" this week at its SeminArt series. SeminArt consists of workshops and lectures to assist artists, not only in legal matters as their name would suggest, but also on surviving and thriving in a complex profession.
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A panel of local artists will discuss legal (ahem) ways -- aside from selling their work -- to make dough. Artists on the panel include P. Scott Cunningham, Christy Gast, Leyden Rodriguez-Casanova, Summer Hill Seven, and Francis Twombly, who will discuss their not-too-shabby day jobs.
Christy Gast's degrees in Women's Studies and Visual Arts make her a great candidate for working as both an artist and a grant writer for the arts, which is her side job. "I was quite accustomed to writing research papers on all sorts of issues when I finished college. I found I could develop my skill as a writer into a freelance business that is both interesting and important, and supports my studio practice."
What's it like to make money and live creatively? Poet, University of Wynwood founder and O, Miami man P. Scott Cunningham admits, "My only secret is to be stupid enough to believe that the world cares about what you do." It seems that's the best way, if there is a good way, to be stupid.
Frankly, it's not be the best economy to quit your job to blow glass full-time. But if you can also teach little kids to melt some shards, you might just be able to pursue your creative endeavors AND afford to eat. SeminArt takes place tomorrow from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. at ArtSeen (2215 NW Second Ave., Miami). Register at Legalartmiami.org.