Wednesday, January 11, 2012
THE ART OF TEACHING ART by Elgin SUBWAYSURFER Bolling
There comes a time in every professional artists life when you absolutely, positively MUST speak/teach in front of a group. That group may be a group of public school kids on career day, a continuing education course at The Learning Annex, or community college, or a seminar like I'm teaching in the above photo.
WHY MUST YOU DO THIS?
Actually there are a number of reasons why doing this is beneficial to your career. Among them are:
NOTORIETY AND VISIBILITY
Let's face it, no matter how good you are as an artist, in the public mind "artists are a dime a dozen." most people "know"someone who can draw, or think one artist, is just as good as another. Part of the reason for this erroneous public perception is due to the way most artists present themselves, or rather don't present themselves. For the most part, art is a solitary activity, which takes a lot of time to create. Because we artists spend a lot of tmrw focusing on our work, we may not spend an equal amount of time focusing on, and interacting with people. I've met artists whose work is brilliant, visually but whose personalities seem to evaporate when they have to explain it to someone. Most feel that their work should "speak for them". However, in the non artist world, people make themselves known by speaking for themselves.
In order to stand out from the art crowd, you must become adept at speaking for yourself. You must be able to transfer, and impart what you know to other people. So few artists are able to do this, that those who can, will be the ones who stand out and will be remembered.
A GREAT WAY TO GET NEW CLIENTS
Another benefit of teaching/public speaking is that it's a great way to get clients. Even if you give a free seminar,you never know who is in the audience listening. Often times another person will hear you speak and present, and will be impressed enough to hire you for a business venture they are involved in. This is precisely what landed me a job with EHOW.COM where I was commissioned to do 90 instructional videos entitled "drawing 101" for children. Potential clients are always on the lookout for people who can speak and present well.
FINANCIAL REWARD IN LEAN TIMES
It's great to have a client with deep pockets who keep you afloat, but all good things eventually come to an end, and you will be out of a job, wondering where the next one is coming from. Teaching fills in the gaps, and if you are popular, your teaching gig can last for months. Seminars and workshops can also be lucrative. The great thing about doing a workshop is that you Jacobs total control over what you want to present.
THIS ALL SOUND GOOD, BUT IM SCARED TO DEATH OF PUBLIC SPEAKING!! HOW CAN I TEACH WHEN IM AFRAID TO SPEAK?
I've read thar public speaking is the number one fear most people have and number two is the fear of DEATH! So speaking in front of a group for most people, is close to dying! Trust me, I feel your pain! I can assure you though, that it s possible to get over this fear even if you are an introvert like I was.
WANNA KNOW MORE?
Read part two of this article!