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Why Are Creative Professions Sometimes Looked Down Upon?

It's not easy being a creative in the first place. To hear others opinions about your career path can be tough to add on top of it all.

You work your ass off to towards becoming a professional creative. You’re proud of your work, have really dedicated yourself and have some major goals in mind. Then, you excitedly tell others what you are working towards. “I’m going to be a cartoonist!” you scream with enthusiasm. Then (insert name here) chimes in, “Hmm. That’s interesting. Is that a real job?”

As a cartoonist, I’ve heard it my whole life. I get “the look” from people that question my career. I’ve been told about people talking behind my back (I know who you are) that I’m lazy because I’m trying to just draw for a living. I’ve gotten awkward stares (still do), laughs (not at my comics) and more. You name it.

So, why is that?

Creative professionals are often looked down upon. Many people think we just give them art for free and our work isn’t valuable, let alone a profession.

It’s bizarre to me that this is the case. Most of society LOVES work that creatives are responsible for. Who doesn’t go to a movie, listen to music or read comics? (Okay, I know a few non-comic readers, but you get it.)

Today I shed some light on my thoughts about this. It’s very interesting to me and I don’t have all of the answers, but I hope after watching, you really don’t care what other people think about your goals towards becoming a cartoonist; whether it be for fun, extra income or full-time.

The big takeaway is this: If someone else is doing it, chances are, you can too.




  1. Mauricio says:

    I love your comics and content, thank you for sharing with us your thoughts it really encourages me to keep pushing forward.
    I have been chasing different carriers because I listen to people that art is not a carrier or that is not profitable.
    After years of stress and depression created by doing stuff that I just do because it brings in some money, I decided to live my dream and show the world my art, so at my 42 years of age I’m starting to draw again just like when I was a kid with that much enthusiasm.
    Thank you for inspiring me.

    1. Nate Fakes says:

      Hi Mauricio! Very cool. Glad to hear you’re going for it. It took me two decades before I made it full-time. Before that I worked numerous day jobs and more to help fund my cartooning career. Glad to hear you’re “going for it” and keep me posted!

    2. Will Dudla says:

      @ Mauricio – Hey man, I have been drawing and doing art stuff all my life, but never really took it to the next level until ~2015. I put up a calendar and held myself accountable for drawing every single day. Whether it was 30 seconds or 6 hours, I had to put a pen to paper. I took the leap to do this job wise in 2017 at the age of 40. It was the best decision I ever made. I still am struggling to make any money, but that will come soon enough. Just gotta keep plugging away. So Mauricio, what I am trying to say is that I have utmost respect for you doing this and I know what you are going through. If you are on instagram hit me up @clamsontheside. I would love to see a fellow “older person” kicking ass and chewing bubble gum (sorry it is an old video game reference).

      @Nate – I get this crap all the time. “Real job” is one of those phrases that drives me nuts. It feels like there is some elitest club where they set the rules of what a job is 🙁 One of my friends, who works a state job (and is literally one of the most depressed and miserable people I know) keeps telling me that people see art jobs as not really a necessity like a doctor or fireman. One of these days I am going to go over his house and take all his tables, chairs, books, music, game consoles, tvs. etc out of his house and when he says “what gives?” I will tell him “but these aren’t needed.” A world without art would be a pretty dead world.

      Another former friend of mine did something similar and told me to grow up and get a real job. I say former because I decided that day that people like that were not needed in my life. Those who are so negative you really need to leave behind on order to grow and become better at what you want to do.

      Anyways, I still have a long ways to go in this whole cartooning thing, but thanks for being here for us Nate. It really is great that you are doing something like this 🙂


      1. Nate Fakes says:

        Just to add to this, my father, who retired several years ago from a non-art related profession, just started painting again in the past 3-years. He wanted to be an artist at a younger age, but didn’t pursue it. Anyhow, he didn’t pick up a brush for — I believe – 35 years. Now, in his 70’s, he’s teaching art, selling his art and doing amazing things (killing it, to be more precise)!

        I’ll have to get him on one of my episodes here to talk more about this. At any rate, it’s never too late to start – or restart – and get a career going.

        1. Will Dudla says:

          Wow! That is awesome!

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