Challenges in the creative industry can range from simply finding inspiration for your work to finding the perfect job for your particular creative style. It could be difficult at times, but it should not be the case if you know how and where to look for the information you need. If you are looking for a job in the arts and related fields, here are some ways to overcome the most common challenges.
Challenge 1: Nobody knows what you can do
Tip: Create a portfolio
Your portfolio (e.g., a website, a published photo book, etc.), unlike your resume, shows exactly what you can do. Your resume might be able to provide a narrative of the experiences you’ve had, but a portfolio creates a visual representation of your skills as a creative person. For instance, if you are applying for architect jobs, you can increase your chances of being called in for an interview if the employer sees your actual work. Whether in digital form or not, you should make your portfolio easily accessible to your target employers.
Challenge 2: You have no network
Tip: Be part of the community
Attend conventions, seminars, or even just visit a gallery. If you are having difficulty finding new motivations in your career, meeting new people in the same industry can do wonders. Aside from helping you expand your network, going to such events will also enable you to have intellectual discussions about the topics that you are interested in. Even with the many communication technologies, sharing information within the creative community by word of mouth still helps you in many ways – especially when creating a reputation.
Challenge 3: You run out of new ideas
Tip: Take interest in other art forms
You should learn how to appreciate other people’s work, and do your best to observe and learn from your surroundings. For instance, if you are a photographer, examine paintings, animations, movies, and other media formats. Turning to other art forms to find inspiration can help you develop new ideas for your art. By doing so, you could learn different styles that you can integrate into your work.
Challenge 4: You unknowingly disregard intellectual property rights
Tip: Get to know the people in the industry
To avoid being labeled as a copycat, take the time to get to know the people in the industry. You can still learn new things even when you are not in university anymore, and who else can you learn from better other than the people who are in the same industry as you? However, be careful in doing so, as you would not want to be accused of (or worse, sued for) copying someone else’s work. For example, you can go to exhibits and art installations of artists who use the same style, but you cannot copy exactly what they are doing. What you can do is learn their process and technique, but you need to have your own interpretation of the art.
Challenge 5: Your work doesn’t stand out
Tip: Deviate from the norms
Most creative people find it difficult to build their careers simply because they follow what other people are doing. If you want to show your potential in the industry, try to develop your own knowledge and skills, combine them, and add a personal touch to it. It is all about how you market yourself. Have you ever noticed how Tim Burton’s movies always seem dark, while Quentin Tarantino’s always show gore and blood in intricate detail? These creators have their own “signatures”, and it is one of the reasons why they captured people’s attention.
Once you overcome the challenges that everyone in the creative industry is facing, your job-hunting experience will no longer be as difficult as you think it is.