Welcome to this month’s Artist to Artist post! In these posts you will hear firsthand hints and tips on a range of topics from our professional member artists. Today we will be hearing from Madeleine Chisholm on the topic of crafting a career.
Madeleine has been making since her earliest recollection and is happiest when she has work in hand. In the Seventies she made large fibre works and now works in metal and “glass-on copper”, supplying galleries across Canada with one-of-a-kind and production sterling silver jewellery and small sculptures. Today she generously answered some of our questions about her career and also shared some fantastic advice for people just starting out!
What first made you decide to become a professional artist?
I didn’t decide to become a professional artist, it just happened. I’ve been a “maker of things” as long as I can remember. My grandmother taught me to knit before I went to kindergarten and
my mother let me use her sewing machine at a very young age. Artist is a funny word, I just like making “things” and don’t think of myself as an artist.
How have you dealt with challenges and frustrations over the course of your career?
I just don’t let frustrations frustrate me, it just isn’t worth the time and energy to waste time on such matters.
What is easier now at this point in your career?
People know me, I’ve been around for 40 years, I don’t have to find places to sell my work Galleries come to me.
What is most challenging at this point in your career?
I work hard at NOT being a business woman and I like spend my time “making” things, but the art world demands that I to be a photographer, computer expert etc. I find this most frustrating and time consuming, and takes me away from what I like doing.
Any thoughts or advice you’d like to offer someone who is just starting out?
Make your work your play, that is the secret! Stay with whatever you like doing! Exhibit only your best work, be sharing with your techniques and ways of doing things, always do whatever you promise, keep a notebook to sketch ideas when they come.