The Struggling Artist: Finding the Motivation to Improve Your Craft

The Struggling Artist: Finding the Motivation to Improve Your Craft

One of the most challenging parts of striking it out as a career artist is that inspiration is not always going to be around to help. There will come a time when you won’t be motivated by inspiration, yet you will still be expected to excel. The trouble is that far too many people think that art is all about being inspired when instead it’s all about expression. Expressing yourself even when you aren’t too motivated can result in all sorts of interesting pieces.

That said, trying to find the motivation to improve your craft when you aren’t feeling encouraged is much easier said than done. That said, you are not alone, and there are plenty of struggling artists out there in the same boat. Here are a few best-practice methods you can use to find the focus and motivation to get the job done!

Writing down a schedule for practice


The first thing you can do that can help kickstart your motivation and focus would be to write down a practice schedule. They say that practice makes perfect, but it cannot be overstated how crucial it is to get practice in. You do not have to be particularly motivated; the only goal is to try to finish anything.

You can start doodling and see what happens from there, or you can practice different color combinations that you haven’t used before. The idea is to turn the practice session into a sandbox where you could potentially have fun.

Inspiration is absolutely not needed

The problem with inspiration is that too many people think it is absolutely mandatory when working as a career artist. There is no need for inspiration — only the tools and the know-how to get the job done. At the end of the day, it’s still about finishing commissions or living up to work obligations.

Those who end up getting too used to having inspiration will end up feeling completely stuck when they realize they can’t stay inspired throughout a piece. It’s about learning to separate inspiration from motivation.

Studying the work of other artists

Perhaps the closest thing you can get to working with inspiration would be to try to study and emulate the work of other artists. It can be a surprisingly fun form of self-improvement, as you are imposing a set of rules on yourself that you otherwise might not have done. If you have artists that you look up to, a great way to help improve would be to learn how they draw and try to emulate it. Learning all about the art style of other artists could potentially aid you in finding your unique art style.

Without a doubt, it can be discouraging to find a mental roadblock or two on your way to becoming an established artist. Fortunately, there is no need for inspiration to get the job done. Instead, it is all about learning how to be consistent and focusing on your skills and talents to forge ahead. It’s an important lesson that all freelance artists need to learn.

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