What skills are needed to do this kind of work?
Sadie Wechsler talked to us about her work, which is predominantly photographic or using photography. One would definitely need to know their way around a camera, and photo-editing software like Photoshop. Sadie’s work also partially involved collage, and sometimes involved three-dimensional elements to them; if you wanted to focus on that sort of style, you would probably want to get some experience working with sculpture and whatever materials you would want to incorporate.
What theoretical ideas do people appear to interact with as a part of this vocation?
Sadie spoke specifically to us about two ideas that she thought were important to share about: resilience and community. To make a living making art necessitates a certain amount of resilience. You are going to have the opportunity to pick yourself up and dust yourself off – it is inevitable. Learning to be resilient is simply a matter of learning to stand back up again. Community is important for the arts especially, partially because networking is a very good tool for getting access to opportunities, but also because surrounding yourself very intentionally with a community of artists is going to provide a certain amount of structure. Especially after graduating, this is something that it helpful to create for yourself. I very much appreciated what Sadie said about both topics, and they rang very true for me.
How well do your interests and gifts intersect with this field?
I personally very much enjoyed the work that Sadie showed us, and it might be something that I would enjoy doing as a personal endeavor. However, I don’t particularly feel comfortable or compelled to try and make a living off of making my own art as a private practice. It’s something that feels more risky to me than I would enjoy, and I don’t think I would be comfortable living on a salary mostly dependent on sales. I did very much appreciate what Sadie shared with us about how being a private artist is essentially running a small business.
What would you need to do between now and your graduation date to be successful in this field?
Digital Media & Photography is a major offered by SPU’s art department, and also my intended major. Digital Photography is probably the course that would be the most directly related to this sort of work, and this course (Art 1107 – Time) is a specific pre-requisite for that course. Zack Brent is the main advisor for that track, and the next opportunity to apply for the major is this next Autumn Quarter.