The Two Sides To The Starving Artist


The Two Sides To The Starving Artist

When you hear the phrase "the starving artist," I'm sure the same thing comes to almost everyone's mind. The starving artist is the term that we endear to those who are gutsy enough to live on Ramen noodles and pop tarts, attempting to "make it" and find their big break in their land of artistry. 

And I would have to agree that this is a reality for much of the artistic world on planet earth today. Artists are slaving tirelessly over their craft, perfecting and honing their skills, doing what they love, regardless of what profit it may or may not afford them. 

I, myself, have been there as well, spending time "paying my dues," with big hopes for a bright future.

Although, today, I would like to suggest an alternative definition to the term "starving artist". 

You see, I have discovered that many of us, in effort to pay the bills, to make ends meet, and to make a difference in the world, make some minor concessions along the way so that we can stay afloat. This is a very, very good thing. I know in my life, with having a family, a wife, and two little angels, there are some real realities that are present in my life today. And as much as I would love to just live in my land of artistry, I have to be responsible to take care of that to which I have been entrusted.

Here's the problem. The unintended consequence of living in this world is that I have neglected the artist in me, and I am starved as a result. I have created an entirely different beast of a starving artist by locking away the hidden gems within me, starving them out for a "one day," never to be found.

We have to make, find, and discover ways to unlock the artist inside of us. What you feed will grow; what you starve will die. So the question for me, today, is, what can I do on a daily basis to feed the artist in me? It doesn't mean that I'm able to quit my job and live sold-out to my artistry, but it does mean that I have the opportunity to do something - to do one thing this day to feed the artist within me. It may be as simple as slipping away and writing, or reading a blog, or spending time living creatively. 

Think about it. And act on it. 

Do something before the artist that you have chained up inside of you starves. 

Mark Alan Schoolmeesters



More By Mark Alan Schoolmeesters