Lisa Congdon Book Review
Whilst I embark on making a real life living from a creative career, I’m always on the look out for advice and inspiration. When I saw the new Lisa Congdon book “Art Inc, the essential guide for building your career as an artist”, was being released, I literally jumped on it.
About Lisa Congdon
Lisa is a self taught artist, who came ‘late’ to art at the ripe old age of 32 in 2001. What started as taking a few art classes has ended up become a hugely successful art career. Known for her colourful and intricate paintings, drawings and pattern designs, as an artist, Lisa has it all. She writes, teaches and of course works with clients all over the world. What I like about her, is she still has an Etsy store. There’s hope for me yet 😉 I digress…
I love this artist quote from the book. Lisa writes about the time she started taking art classes:
…I was motivated by something new: an intrinsic desire to create. It was deep seated and primal. I had to make art like I had to breathe.
Topics Covered in Art Inc
In this exciting new book, ‘Art Inc’, Lisa covers practical subjects for making money and building a solid career as an artist. From licensing your art, issues around copyright and working with galleries, to bookkeeping, social media, blogging and creating a clean website. The book even covers how to handle those quiet times and also reminds us to keep a focus on our work life balance.
I really liked the interviews with other artists that are included in the book. Painters, printmakers, designers, mixed media artists and Illustrators. In addition there are interviews from the ‘other side’ of the art business which I found particularly useful:
- Julie Schneider, from the Community Team at Etsy offers advice to sellers on how best to utilise the Etsy platform;
- Jessica Silverman, Gallery Owner of Jessica Silverman Gallery, gives us an insight into how she finds artists to represent as well as advice on how artists should approach a gallery;
- Betty’s Cordes, Licensing Consultant & Creative Manager, gives us an invaluable insight into the art licensing market, an area I find particularly appealing.
What’s amazing is the scope of content and advice for arts professionals which Lisa condenses into just less than 200 beautifully illustrated and designed, blue and orange pages.
I certainly feel more informed and actually more confident about how to proceed on my creative business journey.
Of course each subject Lisa covers in “Art Inc” can be delved into in more detail, but it will give you a solid framework to build upon.
My Creative Business Journey
On a personal level, after reading the book, I’ve created a business plan, sorted my accounting processes and generally become a lot more serious about my creative business future.
Lisa makes you declare at the very start of the book
I am an artist!
Believe me, that’s not easy. It’s taken me 37 years to say that! I still feel a little uneasy with it, but hey I’ll go with that feeling for now, if it keeps me focused on my creative journey.
As an early to middle stage artist I think you can learn a lot from this book. It’s very down to earth (so perfect for a British audience), which I like.
My creative business journey includes my 3 kids and hubby so my plans feel as if they are taking 4x longer. However thanks to this book, at least I know what that journey looks like now.
If you’ve read this book or have others you could recommend, let me know in the comments below or connect with me on social media. I’d love to hear from you.