|1. Somewhere in Devon, 2. Tranquil Life, 3. Devon Hills by Teodora Totorean - SOLD|
After three years of experimenting with the idea of becoming an artist, I also started to explore what other jobs I can do to support myself but to also have enough time to create art. At this stage, although my earnings cover the expenses, I don't make a living from art just yet.
I am lucky with my husband who supports me, encourages me and is there for me no matter what, but I also want to be able to financially contribute to the household expenses. I like to think about myself as a modern, independent woman who doesn't need to rely on her husband for shopping or travelling. As my earnings at the moment vary from month to month, finding extra work is a good solution for the time being. I don’t see it as a regress but as a way to gain financial independence since having regular money means buying more art supplies, painting more and as a consequence creating several collections in order to propose them to shops, galleries and other outlets.
What I achieved so far:
- Experimenting with various techniques and themes and finding my own style;
- Getting in a couple of local shops and networking with artists and business owners in my area;
- Selling online, mainly on ArtGallery and Folksy;
- Generating some passive income from copyright;
- Taking part in group exhibitions in local art galleries: gloss-Art Gallery in Exeter, Moreton Gallery in Gloucestershire and West Country Gallery in Weston-Super-Mare.
What I currently do besides painting:
Article Writing, Book Reviewer
When I gave up my full-time job towards the end of 2010, I wanted to become a copywriter. I gained a Diploma in Copywriting, I had a few books published (poetry and prose) and I had some experience of writing articles and promotional materials in both English and Romanian. I thought that writing was what I wanted to do, and I thought that with practice I could become better. The only impediment was that English was my second language and I found it hard to write at a satisfactory level, especially grammar wise therefore I constantly needed a proof reader. That was my husband, but as he had a full time job, he couldn't be there whenever I wrote something. As a consequence I couldn't work to tight deadlines and I couldn't afford to pay a professional proof reader.
As I had more time for my hobby, I started to experiment with my paintings using cheap paints and cardboard at first and gradually starting to use professional paints and canvases. Painting took over so quickly that I didn't have the time to think of any business strategy apart from finding online galleries and shops to sell my creations.
As I left copywriting behind, I started to write articles about what I know: how to improve your fitness level when working from home, Romanian’s orphans and changing careers. Last year I enrolled in a Freelance Writing course in order to find the discipline to write regularly and to specialise in arts related articles so I could paint and write at the same time. My biggest success was the article “Google Search” published in Leisure Painter and now I have another article accepted for publication by the same magazine.
Cultural Champion, Romanian Interpreter, Bilingual Support
Sometimes I visit schools in Devon and I talk about Romanian culture. Last year I visited Topsham School and I talked about Ester traditions in Romania, including some activities: dying eggs, creating cards, and decorating paper plates for the eggs. I like this project (we are a team of people of various nationalities and religions) as it reminds me of the days when I was a teacher in Romania.
As an Interpreter I offer language support to schools, NHS and Social Services. As a Bilingual Support Worker I go to schools and help Romanian children to integrate and their parents to understand the British education system.
How can you help?
Are you an arts lover? You can:
- Buy my products from various online galleries and shops:
- Write arts related articles, reviews, interviews for your magazine;