Freelance explanation
Hey guys my parents dont understand what it is to be a freelance artist I am trying to explain it to them is there any type of articles or something I could show them so they can read it over me them? I try to explain to them but my dad insists that I need some sort of classes to make it look better on an applications (which it doesn't) but he wont listen to it, and they insist I have a back up and money in my pocket always. I am 22 years old working a 40+ hour a week job, and I have recently decided I want to quit my job so I can work on my art, and spend the time I NEED to on my work. They keep telling me I need to have some sort of part time job and they think I will regret my decission but I feel this is the leap I need to take I have the itch of needing to become a freelance artist I have a LONG road still to go but this is what I feel is right. I am just unsure how to explain to my parents because it is a hard decision and they will be the ones I live under their roof for awhile. Any advice would be greatly appreciated!!

Unfortunately you are a long ay off being able to support yourself via freelance work, but even ith a 40 hour a week job you can study and develop your skills. It just takes balls and determination. Im a single father, I take care of my daughter from 7am, to 7pm everyday, then sketch from 7pm to 3am, every night because thats what it takes. You can do it, if you're hungry enough for it.

In regards to explaining it to your parents, while I dont have any articles, explain that you're effectively a tradesman, or a contractor, people do not pay you for academia, they pay you for a service, and they only care if they get hat they pay for just like building, just like carpentry, its a much easier analogy to explain.

I myself am not going to a art school and have a very low time consuming job, maybe I can help in some way. I doubt you'll find many(if any) articles by successful artists telling people to not go to college and quit their jobs to pursue self teaching. That is a dangerous blanket statement that could ruin some lives. The best answers to those questions are very personal ones to the individual asking.

Almost all parents are very skeptical of the "no college" route. The art field is one of few exceptions where it's possibly a smart idea. I don't know what kind of colleges you have available to you, but a lot of them are wastes of time. Don't get me wrong, some of them are amazingly good and if you can go to them you should. If you haven't already looked into the professors of the school that would teach you, you may want to. If they are standard "community colleges" it'll most like be a waste of time though. The most common story I've heard while listening to interviews or talking with "successful" artists is that they went to a college and wasted their time, only to teach themselves afterward. You're right when you say classes/papers don't make you anymore appealing to people looking for artists. None of them ask if/where you went to school. They look at your existing work to judge if they want to contact you or not based on that. That said, some classes can still be great for learning, such as life drawing!

Even a part time job can feel like it takes up a lot of time and can be a miserable, grueling, draining thing. But it isn't ever a bad idea to have a pile of "oh shit" money, just in case. You say this is the leap you feel you need and I understand that, sometimes you gotta put your ass to the burner so you can run faster. Dave Rapoza signed a lease on a house he couldn't afford just so he would be forced to work harder (I'm not suggesting you do this) for example. Try to be understanding and see it from your parents point of view though. Their son is saying he doesn't want to go to college, and wants to quit his job so he can stay home and draw. As a parent, that is a very scary thing to hear and will only cause worry, haha. It sounds very risky and it definitely is, if you loaf around most of the day or say "I'm just not feeling it right now" you won't be making any money off art anytime soon. Not only is it just lazy but its unfair to your parents who are supporting you, under the impression you are working toward your dream. You'll have to work everyday and it won't be fun all the time. It's real and often grueling work, just like that part time job can be.

I'm sure you already know a lot of this though, I just wanted to say it just in case and also for anyone else who is also thinking of doing what you are.

As for trying to explain to your parents, just do your very best to be clear about your intentions and show you have a plan. They'll be skeptical and probably disagreeing anyway. You'll need to show them how hard you are going to work. Don't sleep for 12 hours, wake up at 3 pm and then sit on the couch for 6 hours. Wake up early and get to work. Show them how serious you are, and even then they might still be skeptical. You can find interviews of successful artists (Crimson Conversations being great ones and much more helpful than all of what I'm saying) where they explain their experience with schools and what they did at your age. Show them who these artists are, what they have achieved and that they are successful in the field. As Vandall said, you are a tradesman. No one cares if you went to a school or who you studied under, they want the product they are buying from you.

Whoever just read this, I hope it was somewhat helpful to you. If not, sorry for your loss of time, haha.
I agree with the others.

Vandall is spot on, you can find the time if you're motivated even with a full time just burns you out like anything! I did it for 8 months....40hr job, 4 hrs study a day and more on weekends, slept on average 5 hrs a night. Not healthy, don't recommend it, but doable.
Atrenr is absolutely right on many points too.

I had a look at your sketchbook, and I'd say you're probably a fair way away from making enough money to support yourself on freelance alone. Maybe even a couple of years depending on how hard you hammer the study and how quickly you learn.

It sounds like you are focused on getting the time to put in the work which is good, but I suspect you're thinking in terms of fast tracking what is in reality a very long journey. It will take years. Instead of thinking in extremes and absolutes, I actually think your parent's idea of a PT job is a good compromise. It also gives you some cash (which you should use for emergencies, a bit of fun and to contribute a token something to your parents for their troubles...they will appreciate it even if it's a gesture more than anything substantial!).

Can you maybe try and negotiate with work to let you go away for some time unpaid, and hammer the study during that time before you go back. (I just did this myself, and am about to start my 3 months intensive in a week!)

As for your parents sometimes the best way to convince someone is for them to meet/see people who are freelance professionals and have actual conversations with them about the idea and the job itself; it may ease their mind, or may not, depends on your parents. I'm not sure that only you explaining to them that you have what it takes is ever going to be that successful. They need reassurance from external parties. Perhaps you could arrange for them to meet online with and ask their questions to Dan or Dave or any other professional full time freelancers that you may be able to arrange a connect with?

Anyway I hope that helps a bit? Whatever you do keep us updated!

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Hey guys thanks a ton with the feeback, I do realize I am a good LONG way away from making freelance support me, right now any free time I have with my job is spent drawing but on average I get maybe 1-2 hours a day of drawing then I have the weekends I become a recluse and shut myself in my house and draw. I do think the part time job would be a good compromise, at the level I am at and the level I need to be at to make money is so far apart I want to spend all my time painting and trying to get better opposed to spending it all at this crappy job I average 47-49hours a week at this place because its a job I cant leave until all work is finished, I bust my butt everyday to leave on time or early if I can but I work with too many people who force overtime on me. I bring a sketchbook with me at work and try to sketch in between breaks, with the schedule I have and ways I am trying to be more productive it really just kills me I cant spend as much time on my art as I wish I have been averaging about 4-5hours of sleep each night and it really is taking a toll on my body/mind. I appreciate all the words guys it really does help, I have been thinking about this for awhile but since Dan and Daves stream last night there have been alot of thoughts of I need to push harder and I need to take that leap to spend as much time on my art as possible

Working on your art I've found is abit like working out man, sure you can do low intensity stuff all the time and be fine with how you're progressing, or you can bust your ass till you're a heap, take a little time to recover and bust your ass like crazy again with something harder till youre a sobbing heap. While the first route is good and does give you results the second will give you better, it just requires iron will and stronger discipline. Because you can find yourself taking longer breaks then you intended. If you think you can do this, do it, you'll improve, but if you find yourself drawn to lazy entertainment and such don't. Best advice I can give mang


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