Dear Young Artist:
One of my co-workers is a birder. And so if I am trying to identify a particular bird I took a picture of, or if I have a particularly good picture of, for instance, a hawk, I might show him the picture. Other animal pictures come up as well. For instance I showed him a picture of a coyote I took as well. He was so impressed with that one that he said this to me:
You could sell these pictures!
In more than forty years of making art I have heard this comment countless times. It seems very flattering. And I suppose it is flattering, in its tiny, tiny way. It is a comment you may hear many times in your pursuit of a life in the arts.
But it's a paltry comment. It is a paltry comment because it splits the difference between the two comments you will actually want to hear:
I would like to buy that.
And it admits, nor rises to neither.