Pacific Coast Clouds 6.25 x 7.5 Watercolor & Gouache on Plate Finish Bristol paper Sold

What are your Artist Goals?

It’s time to review last year, and make a plan for the upcoming year!  Let’s review what’s behind us, and create a rough-draft map for the pursuit of artist goals ahead, shall we?

Do you go backwards through your calendar to inspect the events stacked in the last year as you plot the next twelve months?  Pull up your calendar, grab a pencil, and scribble with me while I review….

There’s an artist in this book, so how could I *not* read it? 🙂

Examine Your Previous Year

Last year, I listened to twenty books, and I’d like to increase that to twenty five this year. (If you’re on Goodreads, lets follow each other so we can compare books & reviews.)

I can’t say enough about the wonder of audio books in the studio. Art-making while listening to books has been one of my favorite habits this past year; it keeps me working longer, and I learn so much from both the content of the books, and the way my own creative process is unlocked when part of my brain is busy “reading”.

Currently listening to: The Girl You Left Behind.

Artist Goals
What do your artist goals look like in the next 6-8 months?

Working Studio Check-List

Last year, I exhibited at 7 art festivals, got some printmaking in a magazine called Cake & Whiskey, wrote 60 blog posts and created 15 tutorials on my YouTube channel.

This year, I’d like to increase both the writing of blog posts, and making of youtube videos. That particular plan needs some strategy & ingredients – but it’s written in pen, and circled with stars on my list right here. What’s on your artist goals list so far?

I rebuilt my web site, and left blogspot for WordPress, which was a huuuuge source of fretting and angst for two years leading up to it. Now, I’ve got a one-stop web site & blog combined, with more flexibility for layout, plug-ins, search engine optimization, and better distribution tools. Finally.

This year, I’d like to film and edit online classes, and add a series of blog posts about what’s in your art supply cupboard. Maybe look at new artist’s products, or even old stand-by art supplies and their myriad uses. What do you think about that idea for a series?

Artist Goals give weight to dreams. If you want to get something down with your art, write it down and make a plan.
Jack, surreptitiously reading Fine Art Connoisseur magazine, and pondering where I stashed the catnip and the ball of string.

List the Less-than-Perfect too

In last year’s challenges category (read: not done or needs attention), I’d include the [happy] part where I moved to a different city. The move-process itself put a crimp on the frequency of art-making, writing, and video production, etc.  

I also didn’t take a single workshop (I like to take at least one per year),  and I filled out just a few regional show applications (and got rejected by all).  

I did a big & bold nothing in the way of a regular exercise program. Boo.

artist goals will stick better if they're written down
Moving Boxes, ready for hauling into the studio

Make Some Art Plans

So, what’s on your hit & miss list? What do you have at the very top of your MUST DO list in the studio this year?

Grab a pen and rough it out. Make a painting series? Use a limited color palette for 5 paintings? How about a still life painting in tonal values? Or three pen and ink studies? A single color watercolor? Host a painting party with your closest friends? Apply to no less than four regional shows? Submit your work to at least two competitions? Start a blog? Begin sharing your work on Social Media?

If you’ve written a last year vs this year blog post somewhere, leave us a link in the comments so we can see what you’re planning, and cheer you on.

Stay tuned for new videos, new art and new inspiration; I have a looooong list to share with you!

Thanks for stopping by today, and I’ll see you in the next post!


P.S. If you’re new around here, subscribe so you’ll get each new post via email!
make an artist's plan for more printmaking next year

I don’t want my thoughts to die with me, I want to have done something. I’m not interested in power, or piles of money. I want to leave something behind. I want to make a positive contribution – know that my life has meaning.

Temple Grandin
an online course that teaches artists how to create compelling titles for their paintings
Check out this online course: How to Title Your Art

Save for later & Share!

8 thoughts on “Artist Goals – Review and Make a Plan”

  1. Pingback: Painting Clouds in Watercolor - Tips and Resources - belindadelpesco

  2. Mary Ellen Gale

    What a great way to recap your year! I may have to try looking through and acknowledging a body of work. I went to school last semester for watercolor and Italian but I took a few weeks off and went to Italy so things felt a little disjointed. I think writing down what I did may help stitch that all together. I’m also feeling the pull of fiber arts so we’ll see what the New Year brings.

    I love the idea of the art supplies series. I think we should make some kind of exercise pact too. Make each other accountable for moving as well as making!

  3. Marilyn Thuss

    Hi Belinda,
    WOW you accomplished so much this past year! It makes me dizzy to think of it all!! Good for you…..such a solid year. I am so inspired. I love your new painting, it is a little different for you.

    Some of my goals for this year are to watch and do the projects in the three Craftsy classes I bought last year. I also want to increase my art making time to at least 10 hours a week, not including the time I spend with my watercolor painting pals. I want to learn how to use social media to start posting my work on a regular basis. (Hoping my daughter will help me with that). I want to start taking my work around to local galleries and get some items on display.

    Thanks for inspiring me all last year, honestly Belinda, you have no idea! Hope you got my recent email regarding the painting my husband bought from you to give me at Christmas time. I just love it!

    1. Hi Marilyn, Thanks for the encouragement for my year in review. And effusive bravo to you on the great plans you have for your own artistic endeavors this year! It sounds very do-able, and even more, it sounds FUN! With regard to your learning social media, I hope your daughter helps with that too, but you can also search youtube for tutorials on blogspot, blogging, instagram, facebook, etc. And thanks for the hint about a note from you… I will search my inbox & junkmail folder for it now. Happy painting to you!

  4. Love the idea about “what’s in your art supply cupboard”.

    I’m in a similar situation as you were in last year. We have sold our home in New England and are moving to the Delaware shore……a better climate and a lower cost of living, not to mention a vibrant Art community. BUT, I packed up my studio last summer and, despite leaving a few things out, haven’t done much of anything since. The home we are moving to will have a nice big studio space for me and I am looking forward to see what I’ve held onto that will go into my new Art Supply Cupboard when we move in the middle of March. I have 62 boxes of Art supplies but have either sold or given away a truck full to the young woman who helped me teach in my old studio so that she could open her own teaching studio. I also gave supplies and drawing boards and easels to former students. I’m pretty sure I kept everything that I wanted to keep but it will be like Christmas when I can finally open my boxes. I can hardly wait!

    1. Wow, Sandy, and an I were the box and tape queens this past summer! But you win, hands down on the volume of art supplies! Good job on the sharing and giving away your extra stuff too. I think giving art supplies is so good, and it delivers a palpable and long-lasting shot of encouragement to the recipients. Great truckloads of luck on your move to the shore. I hope you write again when you’re settling into your new studio, and let us know how its coming along.

  5. Hi Belinda!

    I hadn’t considered listening to audio books while drawing or painting, but seems like an excellent idea. I don’t know if you like, but podcasts are also nice to listen to while doing art.

    “what’s in your art supply cupboard” seems great, I really liked the post you did on materials for relief printmaking, so this seems like an excellent way to get to know more art products.

    Thanks to your videos on youtube I have tried relief printmaking (lino cut mostly so far) last year for the first time and I am loving it. So this year I want to keep it up and progress to more complex works, such as portraits. I also want to try etching and collagraph. That’s what it’s my “must do” list for now.

    Hope to see one of your videos soon 😉

    1. Hi Joana, Thanks for the feedback, and the note on Podcasts…. I forgot to add them to the list! Have you listened to art-flavored podcasts you’ve found to be inspiring? My subscriptions are varied, but I love them. Thanks also for sharing your must-do list. I hope your inspiration stays fired up all year long, and I’ll put a portrait linocut on the list for a future demo video if that’s helpful. Happy art-making!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *