Managing a career in the art world can be hard. It’s competitive, the hours are long, and at the beginning, the salaries can be depressingly low. It’s a dog eat dog world out there, with hundreds of gallerinas fighting and dreaming of the same role. And, sometimes, it can feel like nobody’s on your side. That my friends, is why you need a mentor! Someone who will support you, lift you up, give you career advice and generally be there when you need advice.
But how you might ask, does one go about finding such a mystical figure? Well, there’s no straight answer to that one. Mentors may present themselves to you, noticing your work and offering a helping hand as you put one delicately pedicured foot on the art world career ladder. Or, you may have to go out there and approach that mentor you want so badly yourself. It’s more than likely that they will appreciate your directness and quickly take you under their wing, holding your hand as you walk along the glistening road to art world super-stardom. And, regardless of where you find your mentor or who they are, here are some ways in which having one will help you!
They Have Experience
Mentors are generally much older and wiser than you (p.s. that’s the main attribute to look for when checking out someone’s mentor credentials). This means that they will know exactly what it takes to get to the top, as it is more than likely that they were once in your position. And the fact that they are now in a different position, proves that they got over whatever hurdle it is that was in front of them.
There’s Value In An Introduction
It’s not just being introduced to someone, it’s by whom that really makes a difference. If you are introduced to someone you’ve long been fan-girling about, they’ll be more likely to remember you if the person who put you in contact has a good reputation, or if they know each other personally.
You’ll Gain Confidence
Having a mentor means that you have someone to prop you up when you’re down. By always being their to support you, your mentor is showing you that they believe in you, and that you have the potential to succeed at whatever you put your mind to.
You’ll Stay Energized
With someone always pushing you to be the best person you can be, you’re bound to get to the next level much quicker than you with willpower alone.
You’ll Probably Gain A Friend
Listen; whoever ends up being your mentor is probably helping you because they like you, so make the most of it! It’s likely that you and your mentor will become life-long friends!
You Can Be A Mentor Too
Thanks to everything you’ve learnt from your badass mentor, you’ll be able to help out others in your position too. Carrying the torch from generation to generation.
Text Lizzy Vartanian