2009 Goals (results)

January 2, 2010 at 10:28 am (goals, selling art)

I had a lot of goals at the beginning of my first year of PF blogging. Let’s see how I did.

Bring Personal Line below $7K
I transferred the entire balance to two 0% interest cards during 2009 (Discover and US Bank) and had it at $0 for quite some time. If I include the amount on my US bank card (originally on the personal line), plus what got transferred back from the Discover card once their offer expired, it’s just over $7K. The actual balance is less than $1,500, so I’m happy. SUCCESS.

Schedule 4 art shows in 2009.
I scheduled 3. I didn’t sell anything. I don’t know if I just didn’t put out the energy, or if I should have pushed to do new work, or if I just had prices that were too high for this economy (I think the latter). I’m scaling this back right now. I just moved, and I’ve got to figure out if I should be making new, cheaper, reproducable work that isn’t a limited edition (with higher prices). I know my work is good, I just haven’t gotten to the right venues. All my artist friends and co-workers have also said that it’s a crappy time to sell art. No one is buying. I should be pushing more with galleries and competitions (which often have shipping costs, though).  Right now I feel like my art is taking a sabbatical while I figure out my finances, moving, my relationship, and getting myself back to center. FAIL.

Submit work to Seattle Art Museum’s rental sales gallery
I’ve already had art as part of their inventory. I have gotten regular checks from my work being rented, but they returned a few pieces and didn’t have many left from me at the start of 2009. I submitted work once during the year, and when asking about doing it, was told repeatedly that they were not accepting any submissions. In fact, they were scaling back their inventory for everyone. The economy hit them hard I believe. Through no fault of my own, this was an unachievable goal. FAIL.

Review art submissions regularly
I’ll say up front: FAIL. I really stepped back from thinking about art, submitting to competitions, or anything! I had other things on my mind this year, my health (still recovering from a car accident, not exercising, and living in an art studio that did not foster activity very well), my job (a lot of stress there, but it’s improved as my people and management skills have increased), my finances, and then moving. I think, looking forward to this coming new year, that I’m ready to be more active, get healthier, and focus on ME, rather than my art.

Save a $1,000 Emergency Fund
SUCCESS! I had this in place early in 2009. Initionally I focused on saving this more than paying off debt. It was at $1,000 for most of the year, until November hit. I had a large unexpected car issue (a wasp shorted out my engine) that I elected to use my EF to pay for some of it (since my car fund was emptied at that time) so that I could continue to pay debt down – I had been behind and felt like I needed to catch up. I know it was the right decision, and I will continue to pay back my EF and it should be back at $1,000 by end of March.

Snowflake $100/month
Complete and total FAIL. I think this was too ambitious. I was not ready to get a second job; I did not have internet, so could not do surveys; I did not live in a good area for doing a yard sale; I could not sell stuff on ebay/craigslist since I didn’t have internet; and it was a horrible year to sell art. I think I chose this goal since so many other people were doing something similar. I’m doing this journey solo while being in a relationship, and I think it’s much harder to do unless you have a 100% support from your family. Not an excuse but I don’t think I was ready for this quite yet.

Yet for all of the fails above, overall I feel quite positive about the year. I paid off over $8K in debt (or 18%), I have some savings, I’m in a better living situation than when I started, and I have a plan in place to complete the journey! I may do it a little slower than some, but it’s something I know I can maintain easily. I even feel like my debt payoff date is too conservative and that I can do it faster! Unofficially, I hope to be out of debt by the end of 2013.

Next posting will be on my plans and goals for 2010.

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