Book Review: How to Feed a Starving Artist

Written by David duChemin, a photographer, adventurer, and former comedian, who went from struggling artist to reluctant bankruptee before getting his finances in order, this is a book about simple financial possibilities available to artists and other creatives. Like A Beautiful Anarchy, the book before this one, this is an honest book about freedom. It promises no get-rich-quick solutions, just sound wisdom and actionable ideas to help you change the way you think and act in relationship to your money. It’s a starting place for people who want the freedom, not to be rich, but to live their dreams and fill their days with the art and adventure they long for.
— Craft & Vision

The latest book from David Duchemin is yet another home run for the creative entrepreneur. In How to Feed A Starving Artist, the complement to A Beautiful Anarchy, David writes about the things that are necessary to the creative vision, and this latest book explores how a big part of this is the management of money. Some of the things that he writes about make you squirm, and he asks tough questions, but those conversations and questions have to take place - literally- to feed the starving artist.

David writes from the perspective of an ever evolving student of money - about  spending less, saving, investing, and making money - in just a way to get your own wheels spinning about the possibilities for you to do all of those things creatively. He tells how he does those things and why money has value to him - to allow him to do the things that he loves to do. This open and heartfelt conversation offers great insight into David and his business.

David tells his own story openly and honestly- from his own relationship with money and the lessons he learned in bankruptcy to how he successfully runs Craft & Vision from a business perspective.

Not only does he tell his story, but he interviews others in their respective fields to share their own relationship with money, and to offer tips and great different perspectives. From his own manager to a CPA for creatives to a comedy performer, David covers quite a lot of territory- and makes it enjoyable to read. This book is not a dry financial summary, but an open and honest conversation about what creatives need to look at in order to feed themselves and their families.

I highly recommend this book for anyone who is making, or thinking of making, any type of living from a creative life. It is well worth the read.

Citrus Classic Balloon Festival 2010

Last weekend, Santa Paula experienced an influx of hot air balloons for the third Citrus Classic Balloon Festival. About 16-18 balloons showed up for a soiree of color. I caught a few photos as the balloons were rolled out and set up before the sun set:

Crafting the Balloon

Taken with the Canon 5D Mark 2 (the only camera I use anymore), Canon EF 24-105 L.  f/7.1 to get a good amount of focus, at 1/80, ISO 100.  Cropping and color correction done in Lightroom 2.

I liked focusing on the guys that were working with the balloons to get them up and running for us to enjoy.

I played around a bit with this photo, keeping in mind the recent Creative Live weekend with David DuChemin, "Vision-Driven Photography":

Working the giant

Taken with Canon 5D Mark 2, Canon EF 24-105 L. f/5.6 at 1/25, ISO 200. This particular photo didn't go along with my original vision, and I wish I would have done a few things differently with it, but I knew that it was important to the story of the balloons. In terms of editing, I used Lightroom to direct the eye a little bit by using some gradient filters.

In terms of the vision I had for this event, these photos are the closest to what I wanted:

Balloon detail 3

The colors and the detail of the balloon are pretty much what I wanted (the execution to get exactly what I wanted was just a bit off).

Ooh and aahing

I love this photo because it shows the wonder and awe that goes along with seeing these huge balloons lit up. It also looks a bit like the Wizard of Oz to me.

This little guy was tuckered out before night even fell:


I had to get his picture, his face was perfect.

Check out the rest of the set here , I really like how a lot of these photos turned out, and can't wait for the festival next year!

Thanks for stopping by!