I get a lot of questions from you guys about how to breakthrough and get known. I usually say, “Aim to be different, not just better”. That suffices for most contexts when I’m giving surface level advice–it’s a quick, punchy answer– BUT what’s missing from this POV is a crucial step…the actual way people can identify that you’re “different”…and is this: YOU MUST SHOW YOUR WORK.
In this episode of chasejarvis RAW I break down the ‘why’ behind showing your work…but I don’t do it alone! My friend Austin Kleon literally wrote the book on this topic so I hustled down to Texas and asked him to share his 3 top reasons for showing your work this hugely valuable and can break you from obscurity.
- Becoming a documentarian chronicles your work. As such you can track where you’re headed and where you’ve been. It also builds in accountability. If you set an intention to share something daily, weekly, or whatever interval, it forces you to create and be intentional in your work.
- Sharing your work is self promotion in an authentic way. And over time, people can see how your work evolves. People are just as interested in HOW the work is done as they are in the actual work. By sharing your process, you invite people to not only get to know your work, but get to know you. Often new clients or new work can come from someone who not only loves your work, but how or why you do it.
- As you gain fans and followers of your work, a small community can form. One that can both love and criticize what you do. But all that feedback creates conversation and in many ways can/will influence your future work. Remember that haters are good, and often a sign of progress. If someone cares enough about what you’re doing to comment (good or bad) then you’re onto something.
So there you have it… Sharing your work is the first step toward breaking through. If you’ve been doing that, keep at it. Very few things happen overnight. I haven’t come across one artist who seemingly was an “overnight success” who wasn’t backed by years of hustling and grinding to get there! You must be consistent, keep evolving, and look for opportunities to share your work!
Listen to the Podcast
Meet Austin Kleon [0:38] Becoming a documentarian has intrinsic value [1:08] Sharing your work is self promotion [1:43] Create a community around your work [2:20]
Links from the Episode
Find out more about Austin Kleon and his work:
“You Can Have It” by Fresh Espresso