Sean Beaudoin

Enough excellent writing to fill a large tube sock

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Totally Un-Asked For Advice About Being A Confident Artist That I Just Gave:

Becoming A Confident Artist In Nine E-Z Steps:
1. Somehow get through your twenties without giving up, while simultaneously coming to the almost-impossible-to-embrace-during-your-twenties notion that you'll have no clue what you're doing until you've got a decade of practice and perspective under your belt. 2. Feel no pressure to exhibit. You don't need to hang your beginning paintings in a cafe or publish your unfinished short story to prove something to your friends or parents. 3. Don't Be A Tool. Putting down other people's work is an ugly art form in and of itself. Be supportive. Be generous with your time and attention. Drunkenly making a "connection" with someone semi-famous at a party will help your career a lot less in the long run than being remembered ten years later as relatively human. 4. Being known as the best painter in a college painting class is utterly meaningless. 5. Never try to convince anyone of anything. 6. Move to an unexpected place, like Little Rock or Topeka. Attend free or cheap classes,
found writing groups, use a church basement on Saturday mornings to hold Sculpture Salons or rehearsals for puppetry productions of Beckett and Brecht. Be the person that drives events instead of the one that complains about the lack of them. 7. Take a shit job with a company that does finish carpentry or Zen landscaping with the idea that once you've done it for a few years you will have a skill for life that will subsidize the making of art, which really just means being able to work less than twenty-eight hours a week and still afford materials plus a sunny light-filled loft. 8. Genuinely listen to advice. Don't be constrained by it. 9. Aside from those who are lucky, have famous parents, or are fortunate enough to have a patron who requires acceptable favors, almost everyone successful works their butt off. Confidence comes from the knowledge that you've allowed your work ethic to equal your obsession, and that you would have done so regardless of how you're ultimately received.
BONUS ADVICE: Save the 60k in MFA loans and backpack through Southeast Asia for a year instead.

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"The curves are a smoke screen, I tell myself. Inside she’s a bag of hard edges. And I, Ritchie Sudden, am prepared to eat sheet metal."

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