Go! Feed a starving artist!

Posted on September 27th, 2008 by god

artist or rich?

Arvind here, getting back in the swing of things at Flowers.

A recurring topic I come across in my work is this theme of whether one can enjoy their true vocation and become rich at the same time.

For example, do artists always have to struggle or can they make it “big time”? Do they struggle because they are lazy and mediocre?

Looking at the wider picture, is it really possible for us to enjoy what we do and become wealthy through doing that?

With the current turmoil in the financial markets, should we all be revisiting how we gauge success and not just base it on our material things? What does success mean for you?

When you started out in your career or business, did YOU set out to enjoy what you do or did you want to make a lot of money? Or did you compromise your dreams along the way?

A lot of questions. Do share…

24 Responses to “Go! Feed a starving artist!”

  1. Success to me means touching other peoples hearts and helping them to feel accepted, respected, important and dignified. And, heart has led my career path which means that, at this point, I am poor. I need to go back to school and get, at least, my master’s (everyone keeps telling me to do it so I have the credentials to match my skills). That would help greatly and once I am well enough to work again, I might do that or my dream of my Doctorate of Clinical Psychology earned at a seminary!! But, I have time to decide and who knows I may write a book about my life and then my life would take a completely different term. But, you don’t go into my field to make money and if you do you are not very effective because you really don’t make money. Just have to marry rich!!!

    • Arvind says:

      Hi CC

      Yes, you must write your book! When will you begin?!

      As for marrying rich, any wealthy successful women out there?

      You know where to find me ….:-)

      • I think, I sort have started a book by my blog. I also have another 80 page thing that I wrote about growing up. Eventually, I’ll blog that, but I book. I wouldn’t even know where to begin.

        Careful with the rich successful type, that is often a defense against something that will comeout in a negative way in a relationship. Look out for if you come first to her or work, mood changes especially anger outbursts, ridged thinking or controlling. If you find those, unless you are ready for couples therapy run!!! There are some nice ones out there too, but none that I can hook you up with. I’ll look though. LOL!!

        By the way, I love the picture in your avatar…nice smile. No, I’m not flirting…simple statement of fact and a compliment.

        • Arvind says:

          Thanks CC for the compliment – I have been told I have the colgate smile :-)

          As for the rich successful type, obviously there has to be compatibility on all other friends and that should not be the one and only criterion. Thanks for keeping an eye out!

          As for your first book, there are lots of useful resources out there to help you get started. If you email me, I can send you something that I was given by Jo Parfitt, one of our original founders.

          Good luck with all the writing.

  2. Jim says:

    Hi Arvind and great to see you back…..

    ‘Do what you love and the money will follow’ is a book on the case in Doo-bye – the front cover shows an image of a bloke just reaching the top of a mountain with a backpack & treking gear on – a trigger for ‘ lets quit work, travel and smell the flowers while we still can”.

    The caption is ‘ After soul searching and treking he found his true self’ At the top of the mountain is his twin lookalike wearing a pinstripe suit and the financial times under his arms!

    Artists, for example – ask a roomful of 5 year olds ‘ How many artists do we have in the room?’ most will throw their hands up as they love painting.

    Ask a roomful of 18 year olds the same and you may get 1 or 2′ dropouts’ sort of putting their hand up.

    Damian Hirst, Banksie and Ermin aside art gets thrown into the ‘hobby’ category for most as its’ ‘not a real job’ – so for many dreams are somewhere over the rainbow, if at all with water to drink, food on the table and clothes on the back more important. Even with those 2 things it makes us in the top % of haves in the world.

    Money does give us choice – bottom line, can change us, make us feel top of the tree or bottom of the pile if we let it but FULFILLMENT is the great aim to have in our daily lives which can often not mean $X at the end of the day to measure that fulfillment with.

    If we reveal our true calling, our vocation in life and pursue that with full passion and from the heart commitment then I do believe money will follow but often, the reality is hobbies and passions are restricted as ‘work’ gets in the way and we fit in our passions as and when we can & there in lies the balance……

    With the financial crunch as it is at the moment I wonder if ‘success’ will take on a new paradigm as ‘keeping up with the Joneses becomes ‘ talking and getting to know the Smiths?’

    OK how much do I get for that? :-)

    • Arvind says:

      Thanks Jim – clearly all this time at Osho hasn’t brainwashed you and turned you into a brainless moron. Good to learn you have retained your senses…. so far :-)

      However I am worried about you wanting something in return for your comment – is the Osho ethos beginning to rub off on you?!

      One of my favourite books is “The Alchemist” by Paulo Coelho where the key character learns that his real treasure in life is where his heart is.

      So the lesson is to follow your heart.

      There is also the tale of a man who sells his home and the surrounding land and travels the world seeking his fortune. He returns empty handed a few years later only to find that the land he sold was a diamond field.

      OK, I am just off to meet the Smiths in the next borough…..

  3. Gareth in Thailand says:

    I guess it depends if your dream is realistically achievable. I mean I’d have loved to have been a star midfield general for Everton and won us the league 8 years running but given I’ve only got the skill level to be a Sunday morning hacker so being realistic I quickly changed that one (I actually gave up footy altogether and played Rugby).
    I think if you gauge success as achieving that which you set out to do then it becomes easier. I see many people get bitter, beat themselves up and think the world is a crappy place as they don’t have the Posh and Becks lifestyle, the Robbie Williams parties and entourage – guess what folks out of 6.5 billion people not many do.

    As I set out on my career path as an engineer I set a number of goals but I think they were all mainly to do with becoming financially secure so I’d be in a position to provide for my family – wife, kids (not started on them yet) and my mother in her retirement.
    Based on this I set further goals in order to achieve it in the area I am cut out to work in.
    I’m no artist, no singer, in fact regards the creative arts a bit useless. As such I set my goals in the area I could do well, Engineering. I was lucky that this led to other things and I managed to follow a lot of dreams/outside interests as a direct result. I always wanted to travel so I quickly decided that I should follow that up strongly. I always put myself up for the jobs that involve that, this wasn’t always convenient as week to week I could not plan as I wouldn’t know where I’d be – in fact this cost me 2 relationships – however it led to being offered much more including promotions and expat assignments.
    So in essence I did set out to enjoy what I do and did constructively plan, within the constraints my life had, to get a little bit more out of it than some others do. The travel and expat life is not for everyone but it suits me and I get the profound sense of achievement of working on interesting and challenging engineering and manufacturing projects and later seeing the results driving down the street.

    It helps if you are looking at things from an opportunistic point of view and maybe take on some challenges that normally you wouldn’t, out of this opportunities can often arise – least ways it can’t do you much harm to try at least.

    • Gareth in Thailand says:

      Suitably predictable response from the fishy one, creativity is not your strong point is it lad?
      Ever thought of getting that chip off your shoulder, it would no doubt solve the food shortages of many countries for some time to come.

    • Arvind says:

      Excellent feedback Gareth.

      However Everton could have done with another midfield general in the mould of Peter Reid in recent years.

      You may need someone like Peter Reid today in a few hours in the merseyside derby – I bet Gerard scores :-(

      I think you are unique and rare in that not many people go about getting clear about their goals and actually doing something about it. Who needs a coach heh?!

      Good on you for seeking out suitable opportunities and taking on challenges, and it must be very fulfilling to see the results of your work in a very profound measurable way.

      Now what’s the action plan for the kids?!

      • Urban Pagan says:


        Peter Reid

        a legend!

        fair play I had you down as a nuts hippy type but you appear to be a lot mre grounded!! I’m impressed mate!!

        • Arvind says:

          PS UP – thanks for the recognition at last!

          I guess I can mix it up like the best of them. No time for all this extreme hippy, mumbo-jumbo stuff.

          By the way, I am just going into town near Euston and the only place I can park for free is on Eversholt Street. Is that anywhere near your favourite haunt, Euston Sauna?!

      • Gareth in Thailand says:

        Still practicing, regularly!
        I think Saha is due a goal on his debut and with luck one of our lads will kick Gerrard up in the air in the first 5 minutes and then we can all laugh as the red nose commentators like Hansen and Mark ‘Masculine’ Lawrenson whine and bitch about it for half an hour after the game.

        You got tickets?

        • Arvind says:

          Sorry guys, but I have feeling Keane might open his Liverpool account today.

          But then again what do I know about my football?!

          After all, my home town team is Coventry City and I have a soft spot for Leeds United – ever since they thrashed Coventry 3-0 in my first ever live football match :-)

        • Jim says:


          I de-robed to pop out and write my Day 6 OSHO post and low and behold the game is on – Artetta has just been brought down in the 39th minute…

          The O Hotel here in Pune on Koregaon Park Road (not quite Goodison Park, home of Everon) and the match is on live!

          **For the readers Everton are a football team in the UK**

          Predict a 1-1 result.


        • Arvind says:

          Sorry Jim, UP, Gareth et al

          Liverpool easily beat Everton 2-0

          And Jim is it really true that Everton are a football team?!

        • Jim says:


          Shuffles feet.

        • Gareth in Thailand says:

          The fact that Mike Riley is a red nose probably didn’t help. 2 missed penalties, a dubious yellow card and a down right ridiculous red card.

  4. aussiecynic says:

    It is an unfortunate accompanyment to the creative mind Arvind …

    Most Creative minds see the world totally differently to the rest…
    It is nothing to get yourself lost in a painting for days.. and simple forget to eat…
    the only time you leave it is for the rest room which is generally after stalling for ages…

    It not lazy or anything else that is the cause…
    To the creative mind there is nothing more important than the work…
    The things you are creating is the soul purpose for your total being… and life must stop until it is finished…

    The down side of this is most artists are indeed starving because many do not have the understanding of how to make to money and will rely heavily of agents and mangers for that side of life… they will spend any cash on paint and canvas and a few bags of chips rather than a steak dinner and geeeeeeezzzzzze mate whos got time to cook when there is work waiting to be done…

    You can have it both ways if you find a manger who is willing to do the right thing… but for many artists they get very little for their work and the manger/agents take a very good commission… then there is the gallery commissions, thats about 50% of the sale price.. then the artist needs to resupply and at the end of it normally ends up with about 20% of the sale price to live on until they have completely enough work to do it all again…

    THis is the voice of experience….
    After 5 years of a fine arts Diploma, and studying with many noted artists and meeting and socialism with many more… there are not hat many who will tell you they are making a good living out of their art.. most are teaching to suppliment and most only when they run out of paint….
    It is sad that artist dont generally recieve the 100,000′s their paintings sell for at auction… most are either dead or the painting was purchased for a few hundred dollars when the artist was starting out… that money goes to the owner not the artist….
    such is the value of talent……

    • Jim says:

      Fine arts eh AC – your talents never cease – so much to you, flower smeller!

      • aussiecynic says:

        you have no idea the things I have done…. over these years…. mate… you would be surprised.. heheheheheh.. 5 years studying fine arts… give you an idea of what I can in the realm of arts… paint of course, photography, multimedia, design, sculpture, printmaking all sorts, art history 3 years worth ouch, drawing, life drawing (thats with human models) and that is just some of the things… oh and I used to teach primary school kids art for free because it was fun…. both here andback home.. hehehhe…
        Told you I am full of surprises….

  5. In reading the comments, I kept thinking of the Bible verse in 1 Timothy 6:10 and how I see that happening now especially with the financial crisis here in the US. “For the love of money is at the root of all kinds of evil. And some people, craving money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many sorrows.” (New Living Translation)

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