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One thing I did not receive much of in three years of studying Digital Photography & Graphic Design was instruction in how to present myself and my Portfolio as a Business. After Graduating in 2011, I spent years trying to figure out where my Style of work fit in the Industry. When potential Employers told me it was more suited for an Art Gallery, I was afraid.
Getting into the Fine Art Market is even more difficult and competitive than the Commercial Market. Without finances to go back to College, I learned through Trial & Error having only a few moments of hope when an art piece would sell. (Finally). I stopped creating artwork for a while and tried to take the ‘logical’ approach in Life. Find a day job that I would not completely despise and prepare for Retirement. However, the little flicker of Creativity refused to go out. Stubborn as it was, I knew I couldn’t jump back into the pursuit of an Art Career without some semblance of Direction…and Hope.
If my Story sounds like your Story, then, I highly recommend reading this book. Why? I mainly love this book for reasons I did not anticipate. First and foremost, Mrs. Spanos helped me realize my mentality (“mindset”) has been terribly damaged. I had to change my thinking. I had to leave past disappointments behind and grasp for a possible future. But this does not include the generic lines of ‘positive thinking.’ Litsa explains how her parents had to struggle, sacrifice, and save to move their family to the United States with a common Hope of a better Life. After reading this account, I thought to myself, “Wow, if they can do it, why can’t I?” Their Lives give us real examples that dreams don’t have to remain dreams.
After the first Chapter, I was Sold. I believed in myself…and my dream, again. Wholeheartedly. The next logical question is: ‘How am I going to do this, again?’ Chapter Two features great tips on healthy living and the work-life balance among other Subjects. Chapter Three plunges into practical applications of how to go about running your business and thinking of yourself as an Entrepreneur. The Interviews that include feedback from other Artists and Professionals in the Industry give a more complete view of how things run and what to expect. There’s even advice and referrals on Investing. Not a word was mentioned about Investing in any of my College classes.
Finally, my mind is still recovering from Chapter Four. There are so many details about Branding & Marketing (which I learned are two different things) that I need to takes Notes to process it all. Speaking of Notes, there are plenty of Sections throughout the book that allow the Reader to write directly into an empty space on the page to get your thoughts about questions asked down on paper. (Spoiler?) It’s almost therapeutic. Furthermore, there are quotes placed periodically in the book. Each of them add value to the Content.
In conclusion, it feels like I had a ‘conversation’ about the “Secrets” of the Art World with Mrs. Spanos and the other Contributors opposed to reading a boring text book full of rules you must follow. Following her family’s Journey made me believe I could have a family of my own one day. It makes the Content easier to digest. Still, the most important Lesson I’ve learned is there are no shortcuts. But…if you need help in being pointed in the right Direction, this is the book will help Guide you.