Well damn. I honestly would not consider my first 3 years of art school to be “successful.” They were years thrown away having a really thick social life, no real direction and not truly being immersed in the work I was making. I wasn’t dedicated, present, and viewed what I was making as a project with guidelines and vocab words and all I made was shit.
The summer before my senior year I dumped the guy I was dating, got myself a library card and spent hours upon hours in the library looking at artist books. Constantly drawing, constantly watching interviews with artists. Reading and looking. I fell in love with image making over and over again. My last year I spent every moment I could either in the studio, in the library, or in my room drinking and drawing and taking pictures of myself naked. My last semester I’d wake up at 7, get to the studio at 8 and just work, go to class, eat in the studio, sleep in the studio and then head home around 11pm. (we were given private studios our last semester so that was kind of nice.)
I don’t know. Every artist has art slumps. Every artist makes a ton of shitty work and a few great ones. But if you’re gonna do this, and I mean really REALLY do this you have to dedicate your life to art. There is no other time in your life where you are going to be surrounded by artists, where your only job is to make work, where you are going to have people there who have the education, the vocabulary to know what the fuck they’re talking about.
Don’t waste it.
I only got my shit together my last year of college. And the only way I did that was by alienating my self from my friends, spending all of my time thinking about art, and taking my meals in the studio. You want social time? Do it in the dark room. You want to make out with girls? Do it in the print lab. You want to drink? Buy a flask. You’re paying $20,000+ a year to be here. Act like it.