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As some of you might recall, last month on EmptyEasel we invited all artists to take our 2014 Art World Survey. We asked questions about your likes, dislikes, future goals, and even frustrations—all in an attempt to better understand EmptyEasel’s global community of artists.

After sorting through the answers (many of which were similar, a fascinating aspect of this project) we created the following word clouds to paint a unique “picture” of today’s working artist.

For a closer view, just click each image to enlarge it to full-size. And of course, feel free to share or forward these to any other artists who might be interested in them.

1. Likes and dislikes

For our first survey question, we asked, “Of all the tasks you do as an artist, what task do you enjoy most?”

The overwhelming response we received was that artists enjoy creating, painting, planning, composing a new piece—anything involving a hands-on, fully-engaged, creative mindset. Of course, the more often we received a particular answer, the larger the corresponding word became in our word cloud. Take a look:


It’s very clear that our core readership skews more towards paint media than any other, but looking beyond that, I think the amount of times that “creative” words appeared in their answers was truly wonderful.

Naturally, our follow-up question was, “What task do you enjoy the least?”


Cleaning up is the worst, right??

The funny thing is, we didn’t really know what to expect from this question—there could be so many things that artists dislike doing. But the simplest answer is almost always right, and as soon as I saw the results, I had to agree.

2. Frustrations

For our next question, we changed our focus just a bit. Instead of “tasks,” we wanted to know what was difficult, or stressful about the artist’s life in general. We asked, “What do you personally find most difficult about being an artist?”

I think the picture says it all.


3. Goals

Our last question was about the future. What’s ahead for artists this year? What goals, dreams, and aspirations do we have as a group? The answers were more varied and unique than before, but as you might have guessed, one theme did appear.

We asked, “In 2014, what is one art-related goal you’d like to accomplish?”


It’s clear from the answers to this question that artists want to do more than just create. They also want to sell their art, get into galleries, have solo and group shows, and be successful pursuing their passion—the determination simply shines through.

To all of you who took time out to answer our survey, as well as every other artist who reads this and feels the same way, may all those dreams come true for you in 2014. Thank you for participating, sharing, and persevering in your artistic journey.

*Note: this post may contain affiliate links*

For the great doesn’t happen through impulse alone, and is a succession of little things that are brought together. -Vincent van Gogh

Hugh Welchman is a man with a vision. . . oh, and he also runs an animation studio. And Welchman’s vision (you could also call it an incredibly audacious goal) has brought him to Kickstarter to make a beautiful film about the intriguing and. . . read more

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