Additional 'note'

The following is cut and pasted from my previous post 'Fire Starter' that was supposed to be an additional note at the bottom...but I ended up venting my spleen. In my art and service as an artist I ALWAYS try my level best to go the extra mile...its never crowded, and it MATTERS, even if no one cares.


05/02/17 additional note: So today I went in my studio and theres a letter from my son (now at the bottom of this post, published with permission) (14), telling me not to give up no matter how hard it gets, because I always encourage him to follow his dreams....made me cry, it was a long, considered and beautiful the best I can commit to, given I only sold one painting last night for £37.32 (I am grateful to that chap though...out of that I get around £29 after fees, materials, packaging and postage...not even enough to cover the food bill at weeks see if I can make this 6-8 week transition period, whilst I try selling stuff off and look for part time or full time employment, make it turn around? NO IDEA HOW!

I have genuinely tried all I can think of:

  • Small paintings
  • Inbetween paintings
  • Large paintings
  • Framed paintings
  • Mounted paintings
  • Recycling paintings
  • Prints
  • Linos
  • ACEOs
  • Huge amounts of genres
  • Loose paintings
  • Detailed paintings
  • Variety of styles
  • Starting auctions really cheap, then folk buying them and selling em on for 5/6 times the price...I am not out to charge more than the time I spend on them!
  • Buy It Nows
  • Bread and butter paintings
  • Niche Paintings
  • Selling on Satchi, Folksy, Etsy, Zazzle, Red Bubble, privately, on my website, thro social media
  • Gotten help with PR and Promo, paid to 'BOOST' (BS) posts
  • Working in excess of 80hrs a week, can't remember barring a bad back at Christmas last time I had a day off
  • Free work in exchange for promo by bands/individuals...taken for a ride! No promo once they got the work.
  • Found as many ways to speed up all processes as possible to reduce time spent on a painting.
  • Try my best to find the best prices possible on materials, I even cut open paint tubes to use the last skerrit of paint.

Maybe doing 'F*ck It' paintings, ie paintings for a F*ck it price, where I literally F*ck It off, that reflect what some folk want to pay, maybe spend an hour on em? Then they will be available for £7.83 plus £2.00 postage, 90.8p eBay fees (they charge 10% of both the final value and shipping whether you add postage after the sale or included in the final price), 30p Pay pal fees, £1.20 of £12.23...or maybe draw up two identical paintings? one I can put up for cheap, and one I can paint as I would? Just to illustrate what the value of time means? Probably lost on most though!

Maybe folk don't really understand, but this is the reality of my work, or maybe society as a whole is just as rotten as its portrayed, some folk don't care, and its fine for me to work for silly an hour even though they wouldn't themselves? So long as its cheap, cheap, cheap?

Maybe I sound bitter and angry, I am about this and it needs voicing. I am not the only one it affects, there's plenty of us out there, from car body repairers who are asked to do a job that should cost £300 for £60, other artists and crafters, even welders expected to do a decent job for next to nothing that may just hold your building together....some want it all for nothing, or as little as possible, but hold value and quality as if it no longer exists...its a very slippery slope! A world of F*ck It off...every job, is a pretty horrible way forward, and eventually WILL bite us on the arse, maybe not painting, but allot will, like cheap multi story, cheap, cheap...till it catches up!

Pretty much lost the faith sons letter and how he thinks of me matters FAR more though, and him saying 'you never give up Mum, a 9-5 ISN'T my Mum' between a rock and a hard place of not wanting him to see me as a quitter, but also needing to provide for him....answers on a postcard please! 

BUT YOU LOVE WHAT YOU DO! ...this is the stock answer I get from many I have this discussion with, that because I love it is a perfectly good reason to accept anything from 75p per hour this REALLY acceptable?

I DO get it though...allot of us are squeezed to breaking point financially, I am NOT saving lives, my paintings are luxury items...but somewhere hidden deep away, gnawed at, bruised and battered, I still think artists and others that make this world a more beautiful place STILL MATTERS...and so does doing a QUALITY JOB of whatever you do, it matters, integrity matters.

Cheers, Nik xx

My sons letter (I dated it) published with permission.

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