Cultivate Your Art Tribe — Caryl Fine Art


Artists Need Community!

Our art is deeply personal. Sharing our creativity requires an immense amount of courage and trust. Sharing our art fuels us and affirms us, but it also makes us vulnerable. It’s impossible to cultivate authentic art in a space that feels unsupportive. Judgment and negativity squash creative impulses! In contrast, positivity, kindness, and encouragement foster good work, good art, and oftentimes, the best friendships.

Art can also be a solitary pursuit. But even the most introverted among us needs a cadre of trusted “art friends” who will support us and serve as resources for us. Do you have such a group?

Artists are waiting with open arms to welcome others into their creative community. I’ve found that painters understand that with each brushstroke, you are leaving a piece of your heart and soul on the canvas. Because of that, we all want nothing more than to form friendships and lasting networks of support amongst those who share the same passion and dream. 

Finding Community as an Artist

Whether it’s through Instagram or Facebook, in an art coaching or critique group, or in the community forum of an online course or membership, it is possible to find valued art friends online. Be sure to make genuine friendly overtures on a regular basis (don’t be afraid to make the first “move”) and give these friendships time to grow. When you start treating someone you only see online as a friend, it sends a signal that makes the other person feel seen and liked, and in most instances the friendship will be established. 

I love the relationships I’ve fostered with fellow artists via online workshops and through social media. We are able to support one another’s work, cheer each other on, celebrate progress, and offer advice when questions or creative roadblocks arise. 

In fact, I’m soon going to meet one of my The Painterly Way members in person—I can’t wait to meet her face to face! We’ll be meeting at the Baltimore Museum of Art to take in the Joan Mitchell exhibit together later this month. 

Finding Community as an Artist “IRL”

Finding this network can be as simple as signing up for a workshop. I love eagerly entering a classroom, the smell of fresh paint in the air, and sitting at an easel next to another excited and motivated student. This new connection can be instantaneous, or it can be built over the duration of a course as we begin to trust one another and cheer one another on more and more. It feels good to conclude a workshop knowing that in addition to having cultivated your creativity, you have made a new artist friend. I actively keep up with the relationships I have built in workshops and courses! 

Don’t Go It Alone

When I post a new finished piece of art or launch a new course, there are numerous fellow painters I can always count on to offer their congratulations and support. It’s heartwarming and motivating to know that individuals who share my passion follow and cheer me on in my endeavors. Similarly, I make it a point to offer my praise and support for my artist friends. There is a remarkable community of kind and uplifting artists out there! 

Whether you’re on social media, in an online membership or course, in an in-person art workshop, be the first person to initiate friendship. Most of the time, it will be warmly reciprocated! Most people yearn for more friendship and community but don’t know where to begin. 

I hope that you are building a trusted tribe of supporters and art friends! What do you find most challenging about finding and creating community? I’d love it if you’d share it in the comments (that’ll help you and I create a connection, too—See what I did there? 😀).


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