The 1 Thing Business & Art Totally Have In Common


The photo on the top left is my business plan for 2015.

On the right is a photo from a sweet little meeting over tea and cookies I had with my beloved designer Quinn.  We were discussing how my new vision for my business is going to translate online into a new website and new workshops coming out this Summer.

She’s awesome and totally got it.

Below is a photo of where I hang my business plan in my studio so that I see it every day and stay focused and on purpose with the work I do and how I share it with the world.

Does my business plan always look like this?

No.  Every year it comes through me uniquely.

What is important to note is that I have an actual business plan process I go through that helps these images, symbols, and paintings surface that thus represent my business plan.  This process I go through begins in July.  By the end of November I tend to have a clear vision of what’s to unfold for the year ahead.

Like everything I do, the process is way more valuable and insightful than the finished product.

This year, my labor pains over this process lasted longer than usual and it was my retreat in Washington that really helped solidify much of the areas that still felt watery.

Having a clear vision of where you’re headed is the most important thing to a business plan.  The details are secondary.

The one thing that both business and art have intrinsically in common is vision.

Before you start a business, you need a vision.

Nails, plywood, steal, and concrete have no meaning what-so-ever until someone with a vision of a house puts them together.

As an artist, same goes for business.  It’s great to have talent, skills, knowledge, and resources — but if you lack vision of what to do with them — they just sit collecting dust or can cause you a bunch of grief!

This is, I believe, the number one reason why so many artists struggle at being self sustainable.  They spend all their time moving the nails, plywood, steal, and concrete around into different configurations wondering if this is what they should be building.

The solution is not more materials, or even better ones.  It’s actually devoting time and energy to going inward to listen to what the vision is that will guide the blueprint to best express those materials you possess.

Once you have the vision, all that’s needed next is curiosity, discipline, patience, and trust.

Does that mean your vision must be carved in stone?

Gawd no.

My vision for my business is worlds different now from when I started decades ago juggling millions of art teaching jobs and showing my work in galleries.  That’s the beauty of being in business as an artist.

It’s art.

Business is art.  It utilizes the creative process just like working in your art journal or writing a novel does.  So as you know, the creative process is never static.

Three years ago I created my IGNITE Online Intensive to help artists not only discover their vision for their creative passions, but to  equip them with methods, tools, and support to bring those visions to life.

As you can see by my business plan, I don’t do things the traditional business way.  Thus, IGNITE is not your typical business intensive.

IGNITE is for artists called to embody the creative process, that believe art is a means for transformation– and who most of all speak in the language of symbols, color, patterns, intuition, and paint!

There’s still one lonely space open in my IGNITE Online Intensive that starts Monday, March 16th.  Maybe it’s yours.

CLICK HERE to find out.

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