10 Years of Being a Full Time Artist – Newsletter Thoughts

I don’t know if you know this, but I’ve been writing some thoughts in my monthly newsletters – thoughts on creativity, making art, and being an artist – along with some other info about what is going on around here. In February I shared the following – a topic that I then hosted a webinar about along with some other artist friends who also weren’t always full time artists. You can check that Spill your heART webinar out here and then be sure to sign up for my newsletter HERE for more of these :)

10 Years of Being a Full Time Artist

As the 10th Creative JumpStart comes to an end, I realized that I actually quit my career as a paralegal in January 10 years ago.

I remember how I asked my boss for a meeting and how my heart was pounding when I sat down to tell him that despite loving my job in this pro-bono/legal aid office, I wanted to be a full time artist and quit my career of 17 years. I remember how relieved I was when I spoke those words, and how wonderful it was when my boss said that he was sad to see me leave but that I would have his full support. Just a couple months before, they let me have an art exhibit in the law office and throw an opening party. I was very fortunate to have worked there. It was a good place and while I might not miss the stress of being a paralegal, I do miss the office and the people. 

I gave myself 3 years to work it out and to see if I could sustain myself as a full time artist. I had 3 years to build up my little n*Studio, teach, consult, write and above all make art. I decided on 3 years because I figured that if I failed, I might still be able to deal with the changes in law to fall back into my paralegal career. My father died when I was a baby, and my Mom was a hard working single mother, so while I had a lot of support from my husband and friends about this decision, having a Plan B was necessary to calm the nerves of my family as well as my own honestly. 

Now 10 years later I am still at it and I love love love my work: I love making art, I love teaching, and I love writing and organizing events like Creative JumpStart. Has it been hard at times? Very, but I have also learned a lot, not only about art making but also about me and about life. And above all, I have met so many new wonderful people, students and other artists. What a blessing this has been. My heART is full! 

And so I thought, what better topic than “I wasn’t always a Full-Time Artist” for the first episode in my Spill your heART webinar series. I invited three other artists to chat with me about past careers, our paths toward our dreams and tips we have for anyone who might think about becoming a Full-Time Artist. You can watch a recording of this webinar and learn about upcoming webinars here on my website.

I also hope you will join me every last Friday of the month, when I talk to different guests on “Spill your heART”. If you have a topic you would love to have an episode about, let me know!

Check out my Community tab of my website for info about webinars, my ArtCollab zoomcasts, and my Facebook Group Nat’s Creative Hood. For all the latest info on webinars and zoomcasts right in your inbox, along with my monthly Thoughts, sign up for my newsletter here.

Thank you for all your support during the past 10 years and here is to at least another ten :) 

Comments (1)

  • Liz Thayne


    Congratulations Nat and best wishes for the next 10 years.Hope you go from strength to strength. I especially love your “stools through the hood” feature. Well done.


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