The study does not prepare for the profession
One thing Carola Rümperer has to clarify right from the start: As an artist, you are only creative up to 50 percent of the time. The other time goes for networking and administrative work. Rümper works as a visual artist in her own studio in Berlin-Marzahn.
But simply, she admits, the way was not. Especially the study of art, which she completed in Osnabrück and Enschede, she had insufficiently prepared for the independent professional activity as an artist: "
Learning content in the study
During my studies, I mainly learned art styles and techniques. But I did not realize that I would later work independently and what that means - about dealing with insurance, legal and tax issues.
Or that I have to market myself and therefore have to approach people, "complains Carola the omissions of her education.
Law, taxes, marketing
After studying, she therefore initially sought a tax consultant and joined the trade union ver.di. They offer members legal advice and protection, among otherswhen it comes to membership in the favorable artist social insurance or pension insurance issues. Carola found it far more difficult to establish herself as an artist on the market.
"The most important thing as an artist is to stand out and stand out from the crowd, because the competition is big. This works by creating your own profile, repeatedly applying for scholarships, exhibiting, printing catalogs, establishing contacts and creating your own projects. Of course, this is very time-consuming, costs time, money - and it can take many years to succeed. "
The Internet simplifies many things
In the beginning, Carola did not even know how to start. Therefore, she first sought advice from artist magazines such as "Atelier". Today with the Internet, it's easier: The Federal Association of Visual Artists eV and the Association of the Communities of Artists and Art Promoters eV for example, provide information on competitions, invitations to tender and current events as well as numerous contact addresses on their websites.
Another way to inform and exchange social networks like Xing or Facebook, which Carola finds however too unspecific. Much more important for the Berlin artist are the local contacts, for example with potential sponsors, local politicians or foundations that decide on the next project financing.
Create unique selling points
But also the contact to other artists, with whom Carola can communicate creatively, is important. Carola runs her studio together with a photographer. Her artistic unique selling point are the "Rümperiens", mythical creatures with black skin, which the artist knows since her childhood in the North German plain and now imitates.
An idea that has already led to numerous scholarships, among others in Egypt and Russia. And she has also received the current studio in Berlin-Marzahn as part of a funding program. Who wants to take a look at their art: Carola Rümperer has compiled a small catalog in PDF format: Carola Rümper_Luxus of the biodiversity 2011
In order to do so, however, lengthy application processes are necessary, as state and municipal funds are very scarce in Berlin, which is why Carola has to write regular financing plans for some applications.
At the moment, she is preparing a catalog, which is under pressure by the Cultural Office; in order to save costs, Carola will have to layout it himself - that means that she also had to work in software programs like Photoshop.
Clean up with wrong ideas
"The real work as an artist - creative in the studio - takes in the end only a maximum of 50 percent of everyday professional life. The rest of the time is spent on bureaucracy, computer work, finding sponsors, organizing projects and maintaining contacts, "
confronts Carola Rümper with false ideas. Even though Carola is still sure that she has found her traumber in art, she advises young people with artistic ambitions to re-examine their professional desires.
Subsistence or secure existence?
"As an artist, one often lives close to the subsistence level. Therefore, one should think early on how to secure financially. And you should also think about family planning and retirement planning in good time.
Just because your own interests often change again in the course of your life, it may make sense to look for alternatives in similar professions that may be better paid. "
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