Starting a Youtube channel

One of the goals I set for this year is to start a youtube channel.  This is one of my goals for the year that is really going to push me out of my comfort zone.

Last year I started videoing short time-lapse videos of my work for Instagram but I didn’t do anything that required much editing. So over the past few weeks I have been watching youtube tutorials about how to record and edit videos. Those helped give me a starting point. However, the best way for me to really learn the knowledge taught in those videos is by actually applying it to my life.  So after learning enough to stumble my way through the process I recorded my first full length time-lapse painting. I obviously have a lot to learn about producing high quality videos and will be making modifications to my recoding area in the upcoming weeks. You know what though, I did it and I am excited about that! I set a goal and I am actively working toward it and that is deeply satisfying. In the words of one of my favorite disney songs, “It’s a step in the right direction.”

So why youtube? Well as an artist youtube offers a great opportunity to expand my online reach. The more social media platforms that my work is shown on makes it so people can more easily find me and my work. Youtube is a visual based platform which really allows people to see my work and the process I use while creating.

Also one of my long term goals is to start teaching both in person and online based art classes. I wont be able to do that unless I get comfortable painting in front of people, the camera, and talking about what I am doing. Making videos is a great way to practice this skill. For now I am just trying to get used to recording and editing videos. In the upcoming months I will be adding voice overs and eventually do a more tutorial based format.

If you would like to follow me on youtube you can find me under the name: Lauren Watkins Art and hit red subscribe button.

I am nervous about starting this channel but I am more excited about the opportunities it will make available to me in the upcoming months and years.

What about you? Do you have any goals this year that make you both nervous and excited? Let me know in the comments below.

-Lauren

A New Set of goals

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It is that time of year when we become reflective on the past year and become hopeful for the fresh start the new year brings.

Being the “semi goal oriented” person that I am I have thought about how my previous years goals went and what I want 2018 to look like. If you are wondering what “semi goal oriented” means, it means I swing back and forth in my desire to be a super focused driven person to the other end of the spectrum where I want to read books in bed all day while eating cookies. Sometimes times I find balance between the two forces but doesn’t always last. I’m hoping to find a more sustainable balance this year but more on that later.

2017 was filled with its shares of ups and downs. There were many goals that I didn’t quite reach because situations arouse outside of my control and I had to shift my priorities because of that. February brought with it a whole slew of unexpected responsibilities that ate up a lot of my time and then a few months later I had to shut down my business for over five months as we prepared to move to another state and get settled into a new stage of life. Even with these set backs and not quite reaching the specifics of some of my goals I was able to achieve others and kept moving in the direction I wanted to go. Some of my highlights included:

A large pastel landscape that I painted for my husbands school that was the gift from the 2017 graduating class. It was the largest painting I had ever done that wasn’t a mural. It turned out absolutely stunning and I am really proud of it.

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“Autumn Light” – The Painting I did for the university

Another goal that I achieved was to get involved in the art community in my new state. I achieved this by participating in the Montana state fair. At the fair I competed at the professional level for the first time. I entered it with just the desire to meet other artists and push myself outside my comfort zone. I ended up winning 3 first place ribbons at the fair, which is always a fantastic surprise.

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Finally, my favorite goal I accomplished in 2017 was successfully starting my business over again. I started 2017 knowing that I would have to put my business on hold for a few months but didn’t know for how long. I lost all the marketing and momentum I had worked so hard to get the previous year. With a lot of intentionality and hard work I was able to gain traction and get my business back to where it was before I temporarily shut it down. This was the perfect reminder for me that my success during the previous year wasn’t just a fluke or luck. It was hard work, consistency, and dedication that made the difference. So now when self-doubt tries to fill my mind I remind myself that I can do hard things, I can learn new skills, and the art I create is of worth.

After reflecting on all of this I spent time pondering what I wanted 2018 to look like. I then got together with my husband and we set our personal, Family, financial, and career related goals.   This may sound like overkill but keeps my husband and I on the same page and it acts as a beacon to guide us through the year. I have big plans and goals for this year and I can’t wait to share some those with you in the future.

What about you? Have you set any goals for the new year?