Tuesday, April 7, 2009

That's my job... Support for Creative Dreams

photo by Jaime Lyerly

Today I spent time chatting with another studio art major very close to graduating. As she worked some dipping plants into ceramic slip, I found out that she was majoring in multimedia. She said once she started taking ceramics, she lost interest in multimedia. But being so close to graduating she has a to make a choice of what she wants to do. As we talked about choices and long stemming family influences on our decisions to be artists, we connected as artists do to one another.

I encouraged her not to settle for what is easiest and to live her creative dream. She thanked me for encouraging and supporting her, I say "Your welcome. That's my job."

"That's my job." I have said it dozens of times in reference to supporting people to live their creative dreams. I say it without thinking but know it is completely true. I say it because I feel that helping other people to express creativity, get over their anxieties or supporting them when others do not is one of my gifts and purposes in life.

But what if that was actually "my job?" The job that pays the bills. The job that I get to talk to people about their dreams, hopes and plans. The job that gets artists together with one another so connections can be made. The job that I can teach others what I know and have learned about making connections online. The job that heals my clients and nurtures my own creativity. Is there a place in the world where this job actually exists?

The smARTist Telesummit that I attended this January had a dozen people who do this job. Each has their own spin on it - social media, business marketing, envisioning your dreams, but all are supporting, helping and nurturing artists. Alyson Stanfield's Art Biz Coach newsletters and her book "I'd Rather Be in the Studio" are geared toward the business side of showing and making art. Her book is to help clear the confusion of art marketing and artist statements so you have time to make art. Another resource is a book I just started reading called "The Creative Entrepreneur" by Lisa Sonora Beam which focuses on creating visual journals to dissolve your fears about the business of art. These journals will be your safe and creative place to explore the business side of art and a way to envision the direction you want your business to go.

These resources tell me that "my job" does actually exist. I am not sure how to get to the point where I can help many instead of just one at a time, but I am confident that this is one of my purposes in life. It is part of my journey.

Your Turn: Do you love to help others to express their creativity? Have you had a breakthrough moment when you realized that you needed to share this information with many? Any tips for me on how to continue on the path towards helping artists connect to each other, themselves and their businesses?


  1. Nice Jaime! I have too many words to respond to this blog but how exciting. We're kind of on similar paths. I think I need to buy that creative entrepreneur book; it has been in my amazon cart for a while!

  2. Hi Gina, thanks for the comment. I bought the book a month ago and finally started diving into it this week. I am more of a read the book then do the exercises kinda gal, so I don't have much to say about it yet. But I do think you would love it.

  3. Great Jaime
    I could actually feel your energy soaring like an eagle in this post very cool.

  4. Jaime - your post resonated with me! That is what I do also...support creative dreams. I do that as a creativity coach (something you may want to consider) and I am in the process of deciding what other ways I can support people's dreams and what they really need.
    A couple of ideas for you...writing e-books, mentoring, community program...
    And...I also just got the creative entrepreneur book...very cool!
    Good luck!

  5. Great post! One of the reasons I'm still teaching scrapbooking and stamping, after 14 years, is because I absolutely love helping others find that they can be creative. I enjoy teaching and connecting and empowering and lately YOU have been inspiring me to take it to the next level.

    I definately think this post shows you're finding your strengths and your direction!

  6. Thanks to Lisa, Sally, Dawn and Gina for all your nice comments! I read them on the day they were posted but never made time to comment.

    Sally, I spent about an hour looking and listening on your website. It is amazing and I am honored that you posted a comment here. I am very much interested in becoming a creativity coach, but still confused on how to get there. I will check out your website more, but feel free to email me if you get a chance. Thanks!


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