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What’s Really Involved in Building a Sustainable Creative Practice, Business or Career?

The beginning of a new year is traditionally a time when many of us seek a fresh perspective on our work and lives as creative professionals. Perhaps this is  also a good time to consider the bigger picture view of everything involved in our work as artists and creatives. After all, our work and careers are a sum of many different aspects. As individuals, we each embrace and excel in some or many of these aspects of our work. And there are also aspects we resist, resent or outright dread. And yet they are all integral to building a sustainable creative practice, business or career. As you step into 2024, I’d like to invite you to consider how you see your practice as a whole. To take a more holistic view of everything involved. 

I’m aware that all artists and creatives identify creativity as being a core aspect of their work. However, many focus primarily on creative output. Creative input is also key to being creative and doing creative work. 


How could you approach the creative aspects of your work more holistically in 2024?

Creativity is a big part of our work but not the whole picture. There are other aspects of our work that demand a different type of focus, mindset, skill set or resources than much of what we tend to see as our creative work. For example the administrative aspects such as documentation of our work, upkeep of our websites, organization of paperwork, correspondence and applications.  Or financial aspects such as systems and record keeping for revenue and expenses for tax purposes and also to assess if we are making a profit when pricing our work or services. We ignore this at our peril!  Professional relationships, collaborations and partnerships can also be integral to our work. They provide us access to opportunities, resources and a sense of community and belonging. Visibility and promotion of our work and ourselves as artists and creatives is also crucial to building a sustainable creative practice, business or career. And yet many creatives shy away from learning how to, or resent putting time into, doing this part of our work. 

These are just a few aspects of our work as creative professionals. 

What else do you see as part of your work as an artist or creative?

Throughout this year, I will be exploring ten aspects of our work through my blog and newsletter. I’ll be offering observations, insights and questions to help you expand your perspective to see and appreciate the bigger picture of your creative practice, business or career. Because, from a holistic perspective, we can begin to see what feeds and sustains our opportunities, growth and livelihoods. And we can focus on becoming more intentional in all aspects of our work. 

Stay tuned!

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