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A bookbinder's confession…

I’m just going to say it – I have a full-time job.

Part of me wonders if others won’t take me as seriously if I don’t make my art full-time. I’m not sure why that is. Perhaps telling some customers that you have a “real job” shatters the artist fantasy.

When you’re an artist, you’re only supposed to make art. All of this makes my brain ache. The fact is, it’s hard to make a living as an artist. I admire those who are able to do it.

However, the main reason I work (money aside) is because I am a social animal. I simply cannot work in my studio by myself all day long. I would go crazy. I need to be around people. I have a mouth and I like to talk. I like to work with others. Strangely, working in an office environment suits me.

Luckily, I have an arts-related job. I work as the Office & Information Systems Manager (a.k.a. computer geek) at the Craft Emergency Relief Fund (CERF), a nonprofit organization that works to strengthen and sustain the careers of craft artists across the United States. CERF offers grants and no-interest loans to professional craft artists who have experienced career-threatening emergencies. In addition, CERF provides business support through education and research on issues such as insurance and preparedness.

My business has definitely benefited from the knowledge I’ve gained since I started working at CERF over 4 years ago. And I feel good about working for an organization that invests in craft. I’m part of that future of craft that we’re working to maintain.

Maybe that makes me a real artist after all.

One Response to “A bookbinder's confession…”

[…] have worked at the Craft Emergency Relief Fund for the past 4 1/2 years (read more about it in this post). I recently realized that it was time to end my time there. Sometimes it’s just time for a […]

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