Living and Sustaining a Creative Life: Essays by 40 Working Artists, edited by Sharon Louden.
I've been reading this book in slow sips over several months and I highly recommend it to anyone who is beginning a visual art practice and to all those who are already established. The gist of the book is that there is no one path. Some artists make their livings from day jobs outside of the art field, others teach or work in arts administration or as artist assistants. A handful make their entire living from art sales and of this handful a few do well and others live hand-to-mouth. In addition to the realities of money, the artists described their art practices. Some need to work every day, others work in waves. They also talk about balancing family and studio. In one hilarious essay, the artist shared how her young son told her that he thought that he needed to see a dentist. Balance isn't easy. The last chapter is an interview with two art dealers who give an overview of the art world. If you do buy or borrow this book, read it slowly as there is a lot to take in.