We all want to be loved, heard, and seen. But the art establishment is only going to recognize a very select few. Because our art is so personal, when it’s rejected we feel rejected ourselves. For most artists, it’s daunting to maintain a healthy separation between our “product” and ourselves. What happens when we don’t? Paralyzed by criticism, artists move to protect themselves from hurt. They can develop an inflated ego, arrogance, or become ridgedly perfectionistic. You can often tell how far gone they are by the “snoot factor” in their manner of speaking. But perfectionism will not protect you from criticism because perfect just doesn’t exist and perfectionism kills creativity. I see five reasons why artists become jealous of each other and overly competitive.
- When an artist submits to the permission-based art establishment they marinate in scarcity. Instead of taking control of their own success, artists strive to make themselves dependent upon others who don’t have a serious stake in the their success.
- Scarcity breeds competitiveness. Because there’s always a loser, and because the winner can seem arbitrary, it produces jealousy.
- When an artist makes art for art’s sake then it’s primarily for their own amusement and entertainment. There’s nothing wrong with that but if it’s all about you then why should anyone else care? Can you blame them? If you have no clarity on why your art matters, yet you’re working so very hard at it, you’re going to be insecure. At their core jealous people are insecure. They believe that you have something that they can’t get.
- With the exception of a few unicorns, most artists are going to be unable to secure the representation that they need to make a decent living. The art market is so over saturated and there are very few decent representatives. That means that 99.9% of artists will be rejected by the art establishment. The art establishment’s rules seem arbitrary so artists interpret their rejection as unfair. Not only do artists feel rejected, they can feel victimized by perceived injustice.
- So who are artists generally surrounded by? Other artists. Jim Rohn was right,
You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.
If you’re surrounded by people who are secretly or outwardly jealous of you and who are in competition with you, how are they ever going to genuinely support you? Bottom line. The scarcity and permission based art establishment breeds jealous, petty, over competitive artists. In The MAKING Art Making MONEY Semester community we don’t have jealousy or competition, we have mutual support and respect. How is this? Because these artists are focused on determining their personal purpose, their mission, and their unique value proposition. Everyone is so different, as is their target market, so there so there is no competition. To keep our conversations focused on the business of art, I maintain an art agnostic policy. Meaning that students are not permitted to post their art in our private Face Book Group. As a result, our community is vital and thriving. Are you now, or have you been, jealous of other artists and their success? Do you wonder why you were not picked? The truth will set you free. Share below.