Tuesday, November 02, 2010

What do you do when not being an artist? (POLL RESULTS)

What's your primary occupation when you're not being an artist
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In October the Making A Mark Opinion Poll asked the question What do you do when not being an artist?  This post has the results - albeit a little late due to the month end being on a Sunday.

On the whole, the readers of this blog are a pretty uniform bunch - although maybe not quite what I was expecting.  See what you think - and do please feel free to make any observations on the results at the end.

111 readers responded to the survey and the results are expressed as a percentage of the total respondents.

Slicing and dicing the stats in different ways this is what I found
  • the professional and managerial classes dominate the readership.  Excluding the practising artists who do not teach some 41% are professionals (23% are non-teaching professionals; 11% are teachers) and 7% are managers. 
  • 38% are reading from home because they are either retired (20%) or a homemaker and parent (18%) 
  • 19% have a full time involvement with art - 12% as a 100% practising professional artist and 7% as a professional art teachers
  • those working in less skilled occupations, on the land or in the forces are few and far between - although I have to say I'm always very grateful to get comments from people who have a different perspective on life.
  • Only 3% are involved with crafts.  I have no bias towards crafts in this blog but some aspects are pretty generic and I guess I thought there might be some more crafts people.
I guess my conclusion is that my tendency to write long posts and at a "people like me" level means that I've got "people like me" as my readership.  

There's a message in there somewhere for you all....... ;)

Any surprises?  Let me know what you think by leaving a comment

You can see
I'm posting the Opinion Poll for November tomorrow - it's all about affordable art!


    Clive said...

    Very interesting poll. I suspect what respondents do when not being 'an artist' is in fact their primary occupation. If you make the bulk of your living as, say an art teacher and not selling art, although you might say 'I'm an artist' when identifying yourself, occupationally you're primarily a teacher. When someone introduces me and says 'he's an artist' I'm quick to correct that someone by saying 'of sorts'. I've made most of my living from commercial art and a bit from teaching, not from selling art to put above couches. Selling art is difficult because there is a virtual epidemic of visual artists in modern developed economies.

    Great blog. I don't know how you manage it. I can't even begin to catch all the posts as they come in!

    Katherine Tyrrell said...

    Thanks Clive.

    I think one of the things I'm constantly amazed by is the quality of work which can be produced by people who do something completely different for a day job.

    I think the main difficulty for those who have other occupations is that they have difficulty finding the time to also do the marketing to sell the work - which is of course supposed to take up 50% of our time budgets! :)

    Thanks for the comment about the blog.

    Clive said...

    Yeah, there is an incredible amount of great art out there. The blogosphere has helped reveal that.

    50% marketing! Yikes. What a nightmare art has become. It's starting to sound more an more like work!

    Katherine Tyrrell said...

    Well art is work for those who are professional artists! :)

    renatabarillipainter said...

    I do agree with Clive:
    we live in a visual immages time so people don't observe really and don't need to buy immages.
    As art is not my first occupation or better money cames from another job, I should not be a full time artist, but I don't agree with this: I feel that I'm a real artist because I 'm free to do what I feel and not what I Have to.
    When I portrait a botanical spicies is because it makes a sort of perturbetion on me when I look at it, and I'm not going to think what is going to be.
    I feel that the commercial aspect of art is ivalidating the artist.
    People doing other jobs are really artists in their soul, becouse their art activity feed them and allow them to live a full
    existence. Katherina you are right when you speak about the difficulty to have time to organize commercial part, but don't forget to do this you have to selfteach this aspecht and may be, an artist is not commercial in his mind.He must do an effort to deal with it.
    tell me about this .
    ciao Renata

    Debbie said...

    I do feel strongly what Renate is saying. I am an artist 24/7 (well almost) but I have other obligations too; make money, keep a house and family +++ but in my soul, YES Im an artist and in every aspect I believe I approach life like one. But would like to be more productive and see more end results. So what does being an artist really mean?

    Katherine Tyrrell said...

    Well I guess the poll sort of assumed most of those responding were probably going to be artists in "our souls".

    Doing something else doesn't mean you aren't a "real artist".

    That's why I used the terms I did in the survey to identify those who work professionally and full-time at their art.

    However it's interesting to see what other perspectives we bring to bear and how many of us manage to do it full-time.

    Three cheers is what I say to all those who have made the jump and rely on their income from art to survive - whether that be via selling art and/or teaching it. It's certainly not an easy option!

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