Not all of you are going to succeed in the art world of todayMaking a success of being an artist of any kind is not easy. But that’s the same thing that I would say about any career. Whether it’s art or science or writing or real estate or engineering or finance or teaching or law or medicine or being a chef, there are no guarantees. It’s still up to you to figure out how to make it work for you.It’s true that your odds of making lots of money as a cartoon artist are not all that great. Admittedly you’d probably do better handling financial portfolios than a portfolio of drawings just waiting for the art scene to reject them, which at some point it will no matter how good you are.But if you hate what you do or long for something else, is that being a success? My guess is that if you can find a way to make enough money and get to work in a field you love, you may wind up a lot happier. And, trite as this may sound, happiness really is something money just can’t buy.
Two women cartoonists who made it work for themI love their work, so I chose to talk about Roz Chast and Lynda Barry. But there are many other women artists out there that have found a way to make the world of art work for them, despite the many obstacles. And the secret seems to be unflagging determination and applying their creativity to finding their own paths to success.
Roz ChastFor anyone who has seen her work in The New Yorker or other magazines, you know that Roz Chast puts her unique, charmingly neurotic point of view into every quirky pen-and-ink cartoon.Her website tells us that she did think about taking a more traditional art career path. But she let her instincts guide her back to where she was meant to go, and has never regretted her peristence:
“Roz Chast has loved to draw cartoons since she was a child growing up in Brooklyn. She attended Rhode Island School of Design, majoring in Painting because it seemed more artistic. However, soon after graduating, she reverted to type and began drawing cartoons once again.”=> Some of her cartoons and more about Roz Chast