I graduated from college with a playwriting degree, and one year later, I hadn’t written a single new play.I was ready to call myself a failure as a playwright. My inspiration had dried up, my motivation was gone and I couldn’t have come up with a decent idea for a new piece if you paid me. It’s not as though I was lacking in experiences to be inspired by.Van Gogh lacked the business sense, but a business sense would have likely not taken away from his enthusiasm.
Because I was a new college graduate in the midst of a recession with a Theatre degree and middling-at-best connections in the theatre world, they were the only ones who offered me a job. In my year at the magazine, I got to expose myself to all the New York theatre scene had to offer, from ten-seat tiny white box productions to Broadway shows with celebrity leads. The pursuit of money is necessary to live in most places, so learning to value your art in terms of money simply allows you to feed yourself and provide shelter for your family. Instead of creating a plan or creating something themselves, the starving artist believes that their Big Break will come and they’ll be instantly rich, famous, and happy. Brilliant artists who have training have long lasting, productive careers that are fulfilling and leave behind a body of work that is full of brilliance. If your day job is killing your creativity and not leaving you enough time to work on your craft, then something has to change. If your creativity goes away, your ability to do your day job will too. On the flip side, if you simply spend your days being artsy and don’t make real world considerations, you won’t be able to get training, buy supplies, market yourself, or feed yourself. More likely, you were just right for a particular role, painted one canvas that resonated, or had some other one shot hit. That’s why the audition phases of American Idol, America’s Got Talent, and So You Think You Can Dance are so painful – many artists have never ventured out of the family bubble. While you do need to make some money, you also need time for your art.By Anna Marszalek, Staff Writer In Western society, the idea of the starving artist is very romantic.We get this mostly from artists such as Vincent Van Gogh, the Dutch Post-Impressionist painter who never sold a painting in his lifetime, but who produced incredibly moving and personal art.
Unfortunately for my parents, it wasn’t just a fling.