Art, Inc. Book Summary - Art, Inc. Book explained in key points
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Art, Inc. summary

Lisa Congdon and Meg Mateo Ilasco

The Essential Guide for Building Your Career as an Artist

3.9 (52 ratings)
16 mins

Brief summary

Art, Inc. by Lisa Congdon and Meg Mateo Ilasco is a guide for artists looking to turn their passion into a business. It covers topics such as building a brand, selling work, and managing finances. A must-read for anyone pursuing a career in art.

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    Art, Inc.
    Summary of 7 key ideas

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    Key idea 1 of 7

    Being authentic is the best thing you can do for yourself as an artist.

    So many of us want to be great artists. But how do we get there? Study artists of the past, emulate them and their lifestyle? As tempting as it might be, doing the exact opposite is a far better idea.

    We’re all aware of the “starving artist myth,” the idea that in order to create something worthwhile artists need to struggle and suffer like Vincent van Gogh. Although a lot of us cling to this myth, it’s a lie.

    Being a professional artist doesn’t necessarily entail enduring a tough life and trying to make ends meet. It can actually mean being surrounded by people who care about you and support you, such as your family, friends, mentors and artist circle.

    What you will need to keep your creativity thriving is passion, talent and hard work. The place you live and the amount of struggle you go through is irrelevant. So forget the starving artist myth and stop mimicking tortured artists of the past.

    Often people tell artists that they need to learn from other established painters or experienced teachers, but the reality is that the best art is art that displays authenticity and the true inner workings of the artist who created it. It’s the art that reflects your history and the events that made you who you are.

    Therefore, if you are copying someone else, you won’t be able to innovate. Taking risks, trying different techniques in your work and using different subjects for your inspiration will be far more valuable and worth your while.

    The good news is that inspiration is all around you. To stay inspired, try keeping a journal and noting down your observations and activities. You never know when a seemingly insignificant event might become your next source of inspiration.

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    What is Art, Inc. about?

    Art, Inc. is a practical guide for artists who want to earn a living from doing what they love. Art, Inc. presents the business side of the art world in a palatable way, sharing useful advice and practical guidance.

    Art, Inc. Review

    Art, Inc. (2014) is a comprehensive guide for artists looking to turn their passion into a profitable business. Here's what makes this book worth reading:

    • Full of practical tips and strategies, it offers actionable advice on marketing and promoting artwork, helping artists navigate the business side of the art world.
    • Through interviews and case studies with successful artists, the book provides valuable insights into building a thriving art career, making it a valuable resource for aspiring artists.
    • With its inspiring stories and expert advice, the book keeps readers engaged and motivated, making the journey to artistic success both enjoyable and fulfilling.

    Best quote from Art, Inc.

    Much of what separates successful artists from those who struggle is simply their mindset.

    —Lisa Congdon and Meg Mateo Ilasco
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    Who should read Art, Inc.?

    • Artists who want to stop struggling and earn money from their work
    • Artists who want to understand the business side of the art world

    About the Author

    Lisa Congdon is an illustrator and has worked for The Museum of Modern Art, The Obama Campaign and Simon & Schuster. Her work has also been shown in The Bedford Gallery and The Contemporary Jewish Museum.

    Meg Mateo Ilasco is a creative entrepreneur and author of seven books including Craft, Inc. She has been a guest on Martha Stewart Living Radio and her work has been featured in Real Living and Real Simple.

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    Art, Inc. FAQs 

    What is the main message of Art, Inc.?

    The main message of Art, Inc. is empowering artists to turn their passion into a successful business.

    How long does it take to read Art, Inc.?

    The reading time for Art, Inc. varies depending on the reader's speed. However, the Blinkist summary can be read in just 15 minutes.

    Is Art, Inc. a good book? Is it worth reading?

    Art, Inc. is worth reading for anyone looking to navigate the art world. It provides valuable insights and practical advice for artists.

    Who is the author of Art, Inc.?

    The authors of Art, Inc. are Lisa Congdon and Meg Mateo Ilasco.

    What to read after Art, Inc.?

    If you're wondering what to read next after Art, Inc., here are some recommendations we suggest:
    • Real Artists Don’t Starve by Jeff Goins
    • Keep Going by Austin Kleon
    • The Mind of the Artist by William Todd Schultz
    • Wabi Sabi by Beth Kempton
    • Daily Rituals by Mason Currey
    • Innovation for the Fatigued by Alf Rehn
    • Your Brain on Art by Susan Magsamen & Ivy Ross
    • Living the Artist's Way by Julia Cameron
    • Steal Like an Artist by Austin Kleon
    • Living the 80/20 Way by Richard Koch