Building Businesses and Visual Memory: An Interview with Artist, Lucy Kalian 

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By Antrese Wood, Conversations about the business of art, and Inside the artist studio. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.

What does it take to hone your visual memory skills as an artist? Can you really build a successful business by selling your artwork? Isn’t (insert any age here) too old to get started as an artist? What am I supposed to do with all this time at home caused by the Coronavirus (COVID-19)?

Thankfully, my guest, Lucy Kalian was kind enough to take the time to discuss her answers to these questions and so many more. Lucy is a brilliant and talented artist who started honing her skills at 40 years old. She’s built two successful businesses and she’s an absolute joy - I can’t wait for you to get to know Lucy and her fascinating perspective on a wide range of topics!

Building your visual memory

What comes to mind when you hear the term, “Visual memory?”

Visual memory is the ability to remember or recall information such as activities, pictures or words that have been viewed in the past.

Is your visual memory game strong or could it use some strengthening? Like all muscles, if you want to increase your capacity, you need to exercise! Over many years of practice both in the studio and in her everyday life, Lucy has managed to hone her visual memory skills like a precision laser. According to Lucy, the secret to her success is nurturing curiosity and taking the time to study the world around you.

Delegating and working smarter

You’ve heard the old phrase, “Work smarter, not harder!”

While it might sound like a phrase that works best in the board room the truth is, it applies to businesses big and small. When it comes to the growth of your business as an artist, you are the bottleneck. You can’t do all of the things, all of the time if you want to grow - sooner or later, you are going to need some help. If you can handle the business side of things, great! If you can’t, no problem - just find someone to help you in that critical area. Do yourself a favor and learn from Lucy’s inspiring story of delegation, growth, and success!

There is no substitute for time in the saddle

Do you ever find yourself wondering what it will take to unlock the potential you know you have within you? What do you feel like you are missing in your art career? While many artists find themselves looking for that one key tip or insight that will help them flip the switch, the hard reality is, “There is no substitute for time in the saddle.” Speaking with Lucy the message is clear, she is a firm believer in putting in the time and honing your craft. Don’t lull yourself into a false sense of complacency - keep striving!

Lucy’s creativity challenge

I wanted to try something a little different and I thought that now, while we are all stuck at home doing our part to “Flaten the curve” that it would be a good time to introduce it. I asked Lucy to take a minute and think of a creative challenge she could offer our community.

Lucy’s challenge:

Even when you can’t sit down to produce a finished piece of art - don’t put all that pressure on yourself. Use all of your observational skills all of the time. Really look at things. Something happens when you give yourself permission to think outside of the box and use your imagination. Wherever you are, take a minute to really look and think about how you would mix that color or arrange that composition. What do you have to lose?

Outline of This Episode
  • [0:50] I introduce my guest, Lucy Kalian.
  • [2:40] Lucy talks about how she got started as an artist.
  • [6:30] What age is too late to become an artist?
  • [8:00] It’s not about the money.
  • [13:20] Lucy describes her artwork.
  • [20:00] The power of visual memory.
  • [25:00] Delegating responsibilities and freeing up more time for your art.
  • [36:00] Defeating the inner critic.
  • [41:45] How Lucy discovered that she was colorblind.
  • [51:00] There is no substitute for time in the saddle.
  • [54:15] Lucy’s creativity challenge.
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