When I had my gallery, I started in April featuring handmade art with Mother’s Day in mind. I put little notes next to small framed paintings or prints like these floral batiks by Julie Dunn and hand fused glass wall vases by Latta’s Fused Glass . Messages like “Flowers only last a few days. Give Mom a gift that lasts forever. Give Mom Art.” The result was that people who had always stuck to the usual flowers, jewelry or candy were inspired to buy art. They just hadn’t thought of it until I made the suggestion. How do you reach out to your existing customers and remind them that your art makes a perfect Mother’s Day gift?
You can find lots of great ideas for how to sell your art, jewelry or craft for Mother’s Day over on Craft Biz Blog.
What do you do when no one will hire you because of your age?
Yesterday, I was speaking with a client who recently retired and wants to do something totally different from her previous corporate job. She called me because she’s considering starting a small business. She was thinking about opening a gallery or co-opand knew I help people do that.
But here’s what bothered me: She said she’d been looking for a part time job but no one would hire her because of her age.
I told her self-employment is not a default if you can’t get a job.
You need to want it more than you ever wanted any job because at least initially, you’re going to work harder than you ever did at any job.
I hear this age discrimination comment a lot, even from freelancers.
And it may very well be true. When a thirty-year-old screens your resume and sees that you graduated college in the 1970s, she immediately thinks “old” and moves on to the next candidate. Both mature men and women have told me they color their hair or have cosmetic procedures when they’re job hunting so that they appear younger. Some even try to model their children’s vocabulary so they don’t sound old to an interviewer.
With roughly 30% of the US population over age 50, there’s obviously a huge market of people who speak our language.
I’m reminded of Judi Dench’s character in the film “Best Exotic Marigold Hotel” who lands a job advising the call centre staff on how to interact with older customers in a way they can relate to.
Whether you’re in the job market or thinking about starting a business, why try to fit into a world where your talents are not valued when there are so many areas where your wisdom is a treasure? You may need an app that a twenty-something develops but does she fully understand the experience of the older end user?
Why not start by asking yourself these questions:
What can I bring to the world that a younger person lacks?
What is missing that can only be filled by someone with my experience?
What products or services do I want to have access to as I age?
What experiences have I had that would have been made easier by someone more my peer?
Instead of trying to fit into the same job slot as a younger person, think about the gifts you bring because of your age, not despite it.
Some things that come to my mind right away:
A market research company that has products for older adults and needs to recruit a panel of product testers who are in the demographic that will use the product.
A rent-a-granny business. When my son was a toddler, we lived in a community with many over 55 adults who missed having their grandchildren nearby. They all wanted time with Todd and he enjoyed the attention because his grandparents lived across the country. As people are more mobile in their work and move away from their birth families, there are opportunities for services that bring the generations together.
Peer tech trainer. My 83-year-old aunt received an iPhone as a gift and signed up for a class at
the Verizon store. She said the young trainer talked so fast and assumed everyone already knew the terms he was using. A clever retiree could start a business teaching older folks how to use their technology. They recognize that they may have to explain things differently than they would to someone who grew up with the terminology.
Typing teacher. Have you noticed that manual typewriters are now trendy? Like vinyl records and turntables, these “vintage” tools of our youth are hot items with those too young to have ever used them. Have you seen how baffled kids are when you set a Royal or Remington down in front of them? What other items did you use that you could demonstrate to younger people?
These are just a few ideas of how the experience and wisdom acquired with age can be an asset in the work world rather than a detriment. Rather than beat yourself up over lost youth and how it affects your earning ability, why not look for possibilities to use age to your advantage?
Jane LaFaziois a mixed media artist working in paper and cloth. She has been published and feautred in major art magazines, books and television shows. Jane travels and teaches at retreats and workshops all over the world.
In our Inspiring Teachers conversation, Jane shares about starting her art teaching business, publishing and about creating wonderful sketching and painting tours to cities around the world. Jane is a beautiful example of how an artist can creative a sustainable livelihood that supports an enviable lifestyle. You can LISTEN INto our conversation and get the entire Inspiring Teachers Course HERE.
Kirsti Manna is a Nashville-based speaker/songwriter/producer/publisher and actress. In addition to consulting with performing artists and songwriters, Kirsty created a successful program and community for young women and girls who love to write songs to help them succeed in the music business.
In our conversation for Inspiring Teachers, Kirsti talks about how she’s created Songwriter Girl Camp which is celebrating 10 successful years in June. She shares how she’s attracted the girls and their families who need and love what she offers. Kirsti’s experience will benefit you in whatever craft you choose to teach. You can join us and get the entire Inspiring Teachers series HERE
For more than 20 years , Connie Solera has taught at art museums, art organizations, summer camps, after school programs, intimate gatherings, as well as public, private, and parochial schools. But in 2010 she left a full time art teacher gig (with benefits, paid vacation, and my summers off) to devote herself fully to Dirty Footprints Studio and she says it was “the best damn decision I ever made!”
At Dirty Footprints Studio she offers tools, mentoring, and sacred space for artists to dive deep and experience the transformative work of owning their creative gifts, discovering their greatness, and expressing their truth as an artist— all while sharing an honest peek into her own life as a heart guided artist, teacher, and creative entrepreneur.
Connie teaches online from her home studio and in-person at her own art retreats in Sedona, Az , Mexico and other spots around the world. She also facilitates a year-long Ignite program for creative entrepreneurs.
In our Inspiring Teachers conversation, Connie shares how she grew her business from scratch by pioneering the art journaling, multimedia collaborative and about her journey to a life that is full of color, creativity and intimacy. You can join us and register for the entire Inspiring Teachers Course HERE.
Jennifer Cornbleet of Tasty Life Coaching is a cooking teacher, coach and author who has taught over 1000 cooking teachers and provides business coaching for people who want to turn their passion for healthy food into a career they love.
Jennifer’s signature mentorship program is the Tasty Life Teacher Training. Each year through this program Jenny coaches a group of cooking teachers-in-the-making about how to find their unique vision and turn it into a fulfilling, successful business. In our Inspiring Teachersconversation, Jenny gives great suggestions on where to start to turn your love of cooking into a profitable and fun teaching career. Many of her suggestions can also be transfered to teaching other culinary arts and pretty much anything. You can join our conversation and register for the entire series HERE
Hali Karlais an artist, teacher, and healing catalyst for soulful creatives. She offers classes and guidance to help you explore your inner world, heal your heart, express your truth+dreams, and consciously cultivate a creative practice to support and empower you in times of transition and discovery. Her holistic-care background and daily contemplative art practice ground and guide her life and work in the world. In 2017, she is leading a brand new program exploring your own astrological birth chart and creative practice called IN THE STARS.
In this conversation, Hali shares how she has woven her background in fine art, hospice nursing and passion for astrology into a spiritual, holistic and viable business.JOIN US
Effy Wild, journal artist & on line teacher, writes and shares about art journaling as a spiritual practice and tool for healing & life documentation.
Effy is a guest teacher in Life Book 2017 & Let’s Face It 2017 and also teaches her own programs.
In a conversation for the Inspiring Teachers series , Effy and I talk about startng your own online classes, chosing formats, platforms, pricing and how to be sure your audience is made up of students who resonate with your style. You can LISTEN IN to our conversation and get the entire course HERE
Miriam Hughes sells her art and teaches a variety of art workshops at many different venues.
In our conversation for Inspiring Teachers, Miriam shares how she’s built a significant following for her art and her classes in a relatively short period of time. She also shares great insight into developing course material, supply list and finding balance between time painting in her studio and teaching. You can LISTEN IN and get the entire series HERE
Barbara Winter is self-employment advocate, writer and teacher . Barbara’s best-selling book “Making a Living Without a Job “ has been in print since 1993 and her newsletter Winning Ways is the longest-running self-employment publication of it’s kind.
In our conversation for the Inspiring Teachers series, Barbara shares how she started her seminar business more than 30 years ago. She talks about how promoting your program can be another fun creative project and the difference between distasteful marketing and the kind of promotion your audience is attracted to. You can JOIN US and get the entire Inspiring Teachers series HERE
Mary Anne Radmacheris a writer, artist, facilitator and personal development expert. Mary Anne has authored 11 books and created magnificent art, often partnered with her inspirational words and famous quotes. She has developed unique processes around art, writing, and personal development that she teaches online to groups and in one-to-one Private Creative Retreats on Whidbey Island, Washington.
In our conversation for Inspiring Teachers Mary Anne and I discuss imperfection, how her teching career began at age 9 and why she chooses to deliver her courses live rather than in automation. Mary Anne says she feels she can serve her students better when she is in a secret Facebook group with them. Mary Anne shares wisdom from her 32 years of teaching in the Inspiring Teachers Course. You can JOIN HERE
Bob Baker is an author, artist, musician and self-publishing advocate who has developed a successful niche writing and speaking about music marketing and self-promotion for songwriters, musicians, and bands.
Bob also teaches improv and in this lively conversation Bob shares valuable suggestions on how creative teachers can market their classes. You JOIN IN and get the entire Inspiring Teacher Series HERE