Staying focused on your plan is an essential element in progressing as an artist. My personality as an artist, however, is one that doesn’t particularly care to have a schedule or a checklist. With that acknowledgement, I do in my own way, have a plan for the things I would like to accomplish as an artist.
The “WHY" for me is that drawing and painting has been my go-to for creative expression. It is a natural for me. So, this leads to my long range goal which goes something like:
I want to produce work over my lifetime that will reflect my creativity and love of drawing and painting. I want to strive for improvement in my skills, and then, if it happens to inspire or encourage others, all the better.
Any worthy goal is deserving of a plan to get there. I have mid-range goals and then short-range goals to help me achieve my artist's vision. My mid-range goal will carry me through a creative period where I can maintain focus and avoid being distracted by other creative avenues. If at some point, I lose interest in my current mid range goal, I can step back, possibly take a break, regroup and/or reexamine my direction.
My mid-range goals go something like:
I have chosen to focus on creating and improving as a Cityscape Artist. I enjoy perspective drawing, I appreciate the varied shapes and patterns found in architecture, and I value the sense of place or a moment in time that can be captured in a location painting. I have three areas that I have chosen for subcategories of Cityscape art: Realism, Abstraction and a Collective work of Identifiable Location Paintings called "Where Squares."
In order to accomplish this mid-range goal, I have a loose mental schedule that I keep (because being too rigid in my day to day schedule can bring on boredom and dampen creativity.) Each month I try to assess whether or not I accomplished these goals.
My monthly or short range goals go something like:
Complete at least 4 cityscape paintings a month in any combination that interests me.
Complete activities necessary to sustain my art business such as promoting, advertising, websiste maintenance and art customer support.
Collect source photography
With this framework of long range, mid range and short range goals held together with the glue of determination and persistance, I believe that I will be thankful that I chose an artist’s life. This may not work for artist's that need a significant amount of structure, but I have found it to be suitable for my temperment and level of self determination.
The above examples showa paintings in Realism, Abstraction, and one of a Collection called