Florida painter, Everglades, Marco Island, artist Jo-Ann Sanborn


What makes a Professional Artist? Morning in Rose, daily painting by Everglades Artist Jo-Ann Sanborn

Morning in Rose
acyclic on canvas, 8"x10"

I've been thinking about what makes an artist a professional? The requirements aren't exactly like other professions--there's no State or Federal exam to qualify you, and a degree is only one way to get there. So, here's a start on my list. What do you think? If you're a collector, do you look for these things or rely on a gallery to qualify an artist for you? If you're an artist, how do you know you've arrived?

Education, which can take many forms, such as an art degree, apprenticeship, or working under an established artist, taking and learning in workshops, and extensive self study. A true artist is always learning something, and generally has a broader perspective on the world than many people.

Presentation, of a quality product using archival materials, preparing surfaces to last, honing skills the perseverance and practice over years of time. Learning, changing, growing.

Critical Acclaim, being accepted into juried exhibitions and museum shows, being asked to invitational events, winning prizes, being newsworthy, and developing a collector base who wants to purchase.

Acceptance to professional organizations, meeting their acceptance criteria, then being juried into state and national professional organizations.

Having an idea worth sharing, a unique style or palette, and wanting to convey something broader in each painting than just making a pretty picture.


Susan Roux said...

Interesting choices. I've asked myself this same question many times, but my answer never looked like this. For such a creative profession, your list looks more like rigid rules from a rule book.

For me, I decided I'd know I "made it" if I could travel yearly, possibly to Europe with my husband, on money my art generated. I'm still working towards that goal...

Anonymous said...

Your palette got a lot brighter with this one!
Very nice.

Jo-Ann Sanborn said...

We're all different and for me to call myself professional I have to be painting and learning every day. Your path may be different, and I hope you meet your goal in the very near future. Your work is lovely--good luck with the gallery in Maine!

Thanks, Shannon. I'm doing a little work on the warmer colors since I'm less familiar with them than the cools.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...