My First $0.30 of Creativity in My Life

I will never forget the first sale (03/11/2017) of my artwork came from Switzerland and it’s definitely more memorable than my first salary which I received ten years ago after graduating from university in IT.

I guess a lot of people feel that 30 cents is nothing for them but for someone who is changing her career path in 30s or a self-taught illustrator, this first $0.30 is so precious and the best motivation in her life.

When I started to sell my illustrations in July, I was having some doubts whether this will work for me. As a self-taught illustrator, I have to compete with thousands of other better artists and millions of products created by them. I’ve read a lot on the Internet and done some research here and there. Some artists didn’t get anything even after a year and only a small number of artists got to earn some money in first few months.

As someone said before on the Redbubble forum, not earning anything doesn’t mean your artworks are not good enough but the place is just so competitive.

I feel I can’t do much besides of doing three things every day, my THREE KEEPS:


Another thing is to keep finding ways to promote my artworks. It sounds challenging but I love my current work. I’m thinking positive
that I had one sale within the half year. I can’t compare myself to top artists but I feel content this small achievement as a self-taught illustrator.

A few weeks ago, I came out with a list of things to do no how to become a better illustrator and challenge myself to step out from the comfort zone. Initially, I was planning to dive into Graphic Design and I chose to start with Illustrator instead of Photoshop even though someone told me that Illustrator is harder to master than Photoshop. I wanted to be less common. It was definitely a struggle when I started at the end of 2015. But now I love Illustrator more than anything else. In fact, I feel more difficult to learn Photoshop which I hope it’s just the beginning stage.

Sometimes, expressing myself in words can be difficult for me. Probably drawing is the best way for me to express myself. I like to write but people will judge my grammar and writing skills. Sometimes, I just wish to delve into my own world — a simpler and freer life. At least there is a place where I don’t have to think of following rules and people’s opinions. Art is just beautiful or ugly. It has much more freedom. Art has some basic principles, but there are no rules. It gives you unlimited freedom to express yourself. If I challenge myself to think outside the box, I will get an unexpected extraordinary outcome which probably better than my initial idea. I love this journey of explorations in art which makes me understand myself more than before this.

When you have so much passion for something, you just want to keep doing and improving and ignore all the negative criticism. I don’t feel embarrassed at all with my $0.30 earning. Instead, I feel proud of it and I will remember it for the rest of my life.

- Where Life is No Longer 1’s and 0’s -