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A sustainable life as an artist…wut?

This morning I had a coffee date conversation with Stephanie LeBolt, the assistant the Artistic Director at the Huntington theater, freelance director, and Fresh Ink development manager/company member. Would you look at how many roles she has in this town!? Crazy right am I right? That being said, a big theme in our conversation was how to live a sustainable life as an artist balancing, work, artistic nourishment, literal nourishment, relationships, and building a career as an artist.

As a senior about to go out into the world again, I found Stephanie’s words to be very helpful. She did not sugar coat her day to day grind, and offered a very genuine perspective on how she juggles her busy life. This was exactly what I needed to hear as post grad plans wiz through my brain constantly. There were a few things she said that I would like to share with the internet that may be of use to the rest of those seniors out there:

  1. Learn how to say no to opportunities to allow space to delve deeply into your projects. (Ilana, I see you. I remember this life changing advice from sophomore year as well.)
  2. Find parts of your life that are constant and routine in the midst of the volatile schedule that is inherently the artist’s life. This may help ground you in chaos. Usually if these constants are self care things, that helps a lot.
  3. Show up to events for the companies and people you want to work with.
  4. Take the people you want to work with and admire as artists out on coffee dates without any question of asking them for anything. Talk to them because you are genuinely interested in making a connection as human beings.
  5. Set aside a scheduled time for artistic nourishment of your choice whether it be to read a play or watch a movie–whatever you consider you need to feed your artist self.
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