By Kyra-lin Hom
One of the first things you learn as a freelance artist is how many people expect you to work for free. Americans talk a good game when it comes to valuing the arts, but very few people are willing or able to put their money where their mouth is. And sadly, we artists perpetuate that process out of a desperation for exposure. In fact, this concept has become so distorted that those 'patrons' most able to pay often don't, instead assuming association with their name is currency enough.
Take, for example, Oprah's current, highly profitable “The Life you Want” national tour. Talk about ironic, this feel-good, ego-stroking show features speakers worth millions to billions of dollars (the big O.W. herself) and charges up to $1k per ticket. Yet it decided that the best way to live up to its 'live the dream' message was to request struggling, local, professional artists to perform on an outdoor side stage for free.More ›