Tuesday, July 08, 2014

the art of chasing a dream


I can't remember a time in my life without art and around age 7, it was pretty clear that when I grew up I wanted to be an artist and my parents supported this endeavor my entire life. By the time high school hit, I had already been selling and showing my work and my identity was wrapped up in being "that quiet girl that made art". I went on to college to study painting and printmaking, grew my creative resume, continued showing my work and bounced from one creative jobs and projects to another. Insert 15 more years of juggling a day job with making, selling art and teaching workshops and here I am today successfully working for myself as an artist. I've had tons of experiences, lots of ups and downs and learned some amazing lessons. While I am not an expert, I am a determined gal who has spent over 20 years chasing after the dream of being a self employed artist and I have all kinds of tips and advice floating around in my head. Today I am sharing a peek into some of my experiences and sharing some of the most important lessons I have learned about chasing after a dream!

Just a word of warning: There are 9 videos in this post and I talk a lot and share A LOT of information so it might take a while to get through this post :)

    art of chasing 1 from Alisa Burke on Vimeo.

























art of chasing conclusion from Alisa Burke on Vimeo.

to read more about my journey as an artist-

the art of setting goals- HERE 

frequently asked questions about being an artist- HERE

the art of blogging- HERE and HERE

the things I haven't shared- HERE

stronger than I ever knew- HERE

59 comments:

  1. Thanks for all this! I've had a long journey with my art. While I've never supported myself with my art, it has supplemented my earnings and supported me in small ways as a stay at home mom.
    I'm now on long term disability and art is what sustains me. It will always be a part of my life. As you said, it compels me.

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  2. Thank-you! These are wonderful!

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  3. Thank you Alisa - your timing is perfect - just what I needed :) x

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  4. Thank you Alisa. Thank you for being real and honest about your journey and process. It is so refreshing and inspiring to hear stories from artists who have had to work hard for their successes. Thank you for inspiring me and encouraging me to keep dreaming and chasing.

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  5. Oh and thank you for your generosity in sharing all this info and you personal story with us.

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  6. This such an encouraging post, Alisa - thank you! I'm going to make sure many of my friends see this especially the 'Do Something' video.

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  7. I can't wait to have a chance to look at all these videos. I never had a single dream, so I've always fit into various kinds of work. Now I'm unemployed and working at being self-employed, but still doing "business" type work. I'd love to just work in a fun store with pretty things around me! Maybe my dream is really that simple.

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  8. This is a wonderful blog post! Thank you so much for sharing. My business has been very slow (like a snail) as I had two kids back to back at age 38 & 40. It's been fun and tiring and I have been frustrated more than once that things weren't where I wanted them to be. I'd love to be able to create my work while my kids are in the room with me, but it's just not me. Soon they are both off to school and I will be able to create full time. This is very exciting for me. Your videos have reminded me that even though I will have the time I've been wanting for years, there will still be ups and downs and that is okay. This is a post I will come back to when I need that reminder. Thanks for sharing this. You could've easily made this a class but you chose to share all this knowledge for free. I so appreciate that and it's why your blog has always been my favorite.

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  9. Anonymous10:09 AM

    Thank you so much, you really gave me the motivation and inspiration i needed. I am currently in the uk equivalent of 9th grade and am struggling to find a direction to focus my energy on. I love the world of acadamia but cant see that translating into a career that i will enjoy or feel is worthwhile. I also love art but dont know if i have the guts or the uniqueness to go far. Although i am struggling with being just ok at everything and not seeing a specific direction, thank you for reminding me that just something is enough and what is important is happiness and joy. And if i can take the time out once in a while to do something i enjoy, i will still be more than happy. Xxx

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  10. Well... to start a huge Thank You.... what a marvellous post, I loved all the videos, your story is just so inspiring, you are such a beautiful person.
    Well done Alisa, wish you all the very Best in the future.
    And by the way, what a beautiful family you have, and Lucy is just gorgeous
    Thank you for this post and probably the kick I needed
    x

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  11. Oh my gosh, this is SO encouraging. You confirmed a lot of thoughts that have been going through my head lately. Thank you so much!!

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  12. Thank you so much for your honesty and sharing this!! It has really helped me to see that some things do take time and that is okay! I currently am working a day job and have a toddler at home, and another baby on the way. I so badly want to create art or something and I've beat myself up about not having the time anymore, but I see how it is so important to start small and be ok with your current situation, and even be more thankful for the things that I've felt were keeping me from my dreams. This is really great advise and inspiring- You're Awesome!

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  13. Crap, I tried to comment but it didn't work... :( Just wanted to say that I love your videos and that I definitely will come back to the one called "it's ok to go slow". It was just what I needed to hear! Thanks a lot for helping and encouraging the rest of us!

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  14. I love this Alisa. So well said. So encouraging. Thank you.

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  15. Thank you for sharing this awesome blog post filled with so much inspiration. I really love your topic on success does not have to equal money. Again thank you.

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  16. This was awesome. Thanks for being honest and sharing with us all, more of your journey. Your words were kinds and encouraging. All the best to you and your family.

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  17. thankyou for your joyful spirit, happiness..and true love to us.. you are so loved back.. xoxo

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  18. Thank you for being REAL and so generous with your wealth of hard-earned wisdom! I thank God you give me this sweet spot on the Internet to come to everyday for inspiration!

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  19. first...thank you for being so transparent
    second....thank you for the videos...perfect timing
    and last but not least....thank you for sharing your gorgeous art ( all of it )...sketch books, photos, lucy, your honey's art...oh...and the beautiful scarf i wear often.

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  20. Wow, thank you Alisa for sharing this ~ the stuff you shared is gold! I am so excited to meet you in the fall as I'm coming to your "You & Me by the Sea" retreat!!

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  21. Thank you Alisa! You are so inspirational to me and these videos are so very encouraging! Thank you!!!

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  22. Truth: I'm a creative and newly professed "artist"...mama to two toddlers. Things have been very, very slow for me, as far as Etsy sales go and trying to gain attendance to my first art retreat on my farm. I've been swallowing tears this whole week, feeling so utterly embarrassed and defeated at how silent the return on my dreams seems. I've reached a very low, low.

    BUT, then today I saw these videos. I just happened to watch, as I've been a long time follower of your blog. You have made me cry, but happy tears now. You've made me feel ok and very much not alone. Your generosity and advice and wisdom is rare and beautiful.
    I pray blessing upon blessing for you and your family.

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  23. You've inspired me for years Alisa. Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts--you give me hope that it's never to late to begin.

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  24. What a generous person you are!

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  25. Wonderful stuff Alisa, thank you so much for your words of encouragement and most of all for being so honest about what a struggle it has been for you to get where you are. You are so right that blogs can often make it seem like a 'perfect life', when in fact there have been lots of ups and downs and hard work on the way. I shall read your blog with even more pleasure now, and I shall keep at my creative work, wherever it takes me. Thank you again xx

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  26. Can't wait to watch these videos when I get home. Thanks for sharing!

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  27. Lots of wisdom 'nuggets' in these videos. Thanks for your example and encouragement.

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  28. Alisa,
    Thanks for keeping it real and sharing- very inspiring! xox

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  29. Marieke1:50 PM

    Thank you, Alisa, for your videos. Very honest and inspiring.
    I especially liked the 'forget about money' video. I'm a person who creates every day, because it's just what I do and I can't imagine not making art and crafty stuff. And just maybe, I'm already were I need to be... I'd love more time to create, but I'm not sure I'd want to connect my craftiness to making money. So just going slow, creating daily and seeing where that takes me is probably just fine!

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  30. Wonderful advice, thank you so much for sharing. I adore your art and inspiration.

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  31. I *so* appreciate all the thought and time and encouragement and great advice in these videos. Thank you for so generously sharing your experiences and advice, and for taking the time to sit down and make these videos and share them with us. Wow. It means a tremendous amount.

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  32. I saved this page all day, for me to watch the videos when the children went to bed...I've been itching to watch them all day! Thank you so much. They came at just the right time for me....you are an inspiration, as always....thank you xxx Just the very fact you 'put yourself out there' by making tye videos for us has inspired me - to make some tentative, small, positive moves of my own. Thank you.

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  33. Inspirational!! Thank you for sharing this 'behind the scenes' view of your journey.

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  34. Thank you so much for telling the truth about the path to become an artist. You make things real and possible

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  35. Alisa, you are amazing! So generous and kind to share your story in this way and to encourage and inspire us all. I love all that you do and admire your wonderful creativity. Thank you so much!
    Sheila

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  36. Thank you for all your blabbing. You have been totally inspirational and extremely interesting. I loved the bit about 'do something-anything'. This is one of my major brickwalls. It's great to know I can come back and re watch your videos when I need to push myself.
    Ali xx

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  37. Oh Alisa i can't thank you enough for this AH-MAZING post!!! your words are so encouraging and exactly what i needed right now! your tips and generosity in sharing brought tears to my eyes! thank you, thank you, thank you!!!

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  38. These videos are really fabulous! Thank you so much for putting together all of this inspiring content.

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  39. Thank you Alisa for this really encouraging blog post. I sat and watched all the videos in one session with a few tears welling up - I am in that space of putting my work out there and it is a vulnerable space to be in. But you have reminded me how important it is to keep going. I have also discovered one of my neighbours loves your work - it's been so great to share the ways you inspire us; it has really caused growth in our friendship. Thanks again for your encouragement and perseverance. Many blessings, Tonia

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  40. Thank you so much Alisa for sharing this wonderful and tough journey !!!
    Thank you for you honesty, for your smile, for your encouragements, for your joy, for your complicity… and so more… I really enjoy your babbling ; )
    You're so positive, it's always a pleasure to listen to you through your blog or your classes : )
    Have a nice week-end !

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  41. So helpful! I really appreciate the point about going slow. I have a tendency to get upset when things don't happen right away, but I'm still doing what I love, and that was a much needed reminder to keep at it! Thank you!

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  42. Thanks for sharing so much information and insight. Amazing!

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  43. Awesome Videos filled with such valuable advice, thanks for sharing and love your work!

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  44. Oh boy, each of these videos touched my soul and encourage my creative being. I even cried through one of them, that's how deep it touched. I just finished up the art of blogging class that I just missed the sale on but I am here to tell you you deserve every ounce of the non sale price! Keep up your amazing work and for being so open and honest to the limited it feels natural to you because that's what makes you being you...

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  45. Alisa, you put so much effort into everything you do. Thank you. Excellent reminders. "Do something, anything" was what I needed to hear this week.

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  46. Alisa, I loved these videos - so many really apply to me, some I wish my younger self had known 30 odd years ago. Always thought I would make a living being an artist, but then got waylaid by other dreams of raising a family and earning a living and now almost 30 years later I find myself being in a position to begin again. I think many creative people have the feeling they need to find "perfection" in their art the first time round and that adds so much pressure and for those of us returning later in life it can be a HUGE obstacle so I loved your thoughts on going slowly, embracing failure ( let's face it any life 30 years down the road has seen it's share of failures and we're still here -so it must not have killed us, but somehow we forget that when it comes to making art) and the idea of readjusting your dreams and of course do something-anything. Thank you for sharing your enthusiasm, knowledge and your heart. It was all something I needed to hear again.

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  47. Thank you for sharing your way! You're so inspiring ;)

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  48. Thoroughly enjoyed all the videos. Thank you!! i have saved this post under favorites. Whenever my muse takes a leave of absence I will re-watch the videos. Very insightful and inspiring :D

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  49. Thank you Thank you THANK YOU!!!

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  50. Thank you for sharing your way!

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  51. Leanne5:53 PM

    Alisa, timely advice for me to apply in several areas of my life. Thank You! Your blog is one of my favorites. I'm not even an artist, but feel inspired to explore my creative side when I visit your blog.

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  52. So LOVE what you are saying here! Kudos to you for keeping it all real -- REAL real. Linking this to my blog post for today. :D

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  53. You have a Positive Attitude
    This certainly helps in Life and in Art/Creativity
    Hugs
    Gerry

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  54. Thanks for such a great video series, Alisa. You share so much of yourself on your blog with great honesty, and you are so colorful and inspiring to listen to. I was especially interested in what you were saying about walking the line between "art" and "craft"--I am a lover of craft, and sometimes wonder if it is somehow less "legitimate" than art. But, seriously, says who?! Thank you for all that you share.

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