I was in 8th grade the first time someone paid me to create a drawing. I made $7 and thought I was so cool.
A couple years later, my high school art teacher helped me to see the value of my work and referred me to the football coach who was looking to have a portrait drawn of his new baby girl. I was paid $100 and I felt like a millionaire.
The summer after I turned 16 my dad helped me set up my first website, so I could accept commissions online. Sometime between then and college, my mom asked me what my plan was for my future. I told her I would create custom work and hopefully, eventually, people would want my original work enough that that could take over. I told her how the value of my work would increase after I received my degree.
My parents believed me. Which is why when I went to college and I had a teacher say that making a living as an artist was unrealistic – I simply dismissed him. When another professor told me I was too emotional to be a painter and that I should consider a different profession – I knew HE was wrong.
When Ben and I first moved in together, I was working three part time jobs along with creating custom work. I told him that I thought I could do my art full time and be successful if I just had the time. He believed me and he supported me as I left each of those part time jobs and became a full time artist in 2013.
Since I was a kid I have created hundreds of drawings for my friends, family, and clients. You may remember in September I announced that I would no longer be accepting commissions, in order to focus on selling my original work. Just this afternoon I finished the last painting that was commissioned before that announcement.
Now, as I sit here staring at a messy, paint covered desk that is waiting for me to create the art that comes straight out of my soul – I can’t help but feel emotional and so, so very grateful for the community that has led me to this moment. Because of my Ben, my family, my teachers, my friends, I am here today, with four months to go before my son can see how much of a bad ass I became thanks to you.
I hope I make you proud :)
Hi friends! Welcome to the blog! I'm Mandy and I'm an artist, blogger & founder of the "Artists to Know" interview series. Here you'll find photos of my latest art adventures, furniture makeover projects & advice from successful artists!
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