Advice in pitching the idea to parents

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Thread: Advice in pitching the idea to parents

  1. #1
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    Advice in pitching the idea to parents

    Heya guys, my name is Chris and I need some advice. Wall of Text ahead. Not sure if I'm posting on the wrong section.

    I come and hail from a typical Asian family background, and I need to convince my parents to sponsor me (1/2 of the fees, the other 1/2 from my own savings) on a 3 year course on illustration.

    I have been tolling for 6 years studying and working something I do not entirely enjoy. And I feel that I needed a fresh new start, and actually doing something I truly loved.

    You might ask, why shouldn't I just work my current job until I have enough to pay for the other 1/2? I wish I could, but I would be starting older(i'm 26 now), and I am on a rather tight schedule to have relevant work experience before I hit 30. It sucks to have to depend on your parents, but I have no choice as time is against me.

    Generally I tend to think the biggest hurdle is that people tend to equivalate art jobs to your usual professionals.

    I had a discussion from my friend, he gave me several skeptical but valid questions that I'm fairly certain my parents would ask as well:

    1. But its 3 years! For JUST a diploma?? Is it even worth that long a time?
    2. Why can't you study part time?
    3. Can't you study something that complements your previous qualifications? (I have a computer degree)
    4. By the time you finish this, you will be 29 and how would you compete with the other younger generations at your level?
    5. Are you sure you can find a job for this? You have have to be really good at this to hit big in the industry. (Its not really a 'noble/clear cut' profession for them)

    I understand my parents were worried on my welfare, studying from scratch at my age is not a good prospect for my future. But I have given thought for 6 years already, and damn it I don't want to end up regretting for not doing this when I get old.

    How do you guys convince your friends/family that art/illustration can be taken seriously as other professions like engineering/accounting? And does age really matter in the art industry? How late is too late to study? These are the things I need to convince my parents too.

    Thanks so much guys for reading this.

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    I was sort of in the same situation a couple years ago, having a very...'traditional' Korean-immigrant family. But for me, I convinced my parents into the whole art thing because over the years I told close family members (siblings, cousins, etc) about what I wanted to do and had the work with me to sort of convince them (but they were all born in the U.S. and not Korea, so they sort of had a point of view more similar to mine than our parents/etc).

    Also threw in the fact that my 2 older sisters (one wanted to do Graphic Design, the other Fashion Design) both went to UC's under majors my father pushed upon them (one Economic, the other Business) and right now, are in their late 20s/early 30s and are hating their jobs because it's just boring and 'draining'.

    About the job thing, a useful piece of advice that I got when I was younger was that it's pretty much hard to be successful right out of school in general nowadays. Becoming an engineer is hard, becoming a doctor is hard, becoming a politician is hard, becoming an illustrator/concept artist is hard, etc etc etc. Nothing is ever easy, but that it takes some time to establish yourself.

    After exploring conceptart.org and other like communities, your skill definitely matters, not age. I don't think it's ever too late to learn, good luck with everything

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    Sometimes one just has to buck the cultural trends. While I completely understand your parents' dream for you to be successful (making money to them equates sucess), realize that they just might not grasp what it is you're about to go into. And they might never understand it either.

    What you've got to convince them on is that it's something that you plan on doing for the rest of your life, there are plenty of other people doing it and making a decent living as well. Let them know that you still respect them for not understanding as well- it could just be out of their comfort zone. And while they might not want to admit it, you going off to art school gives them zero bragging rights (I'm sure they hear from their peers about how their kids are doctors, lawyers and other noble professions). You could conceivably have a relative going off to the Harvard taking up horse flogging and your parents would be more boastful of that (because it's Harvard) than you pursuing a legitimate career in Illustration.

    And don't even let age come into the picture. I've had several "non-traditional" students do more than stellar. Age and maturity often have nothing in common. It's desire and ability is what people are looking for. So even if you do end up taking additional years to graduate-the only one holding you back on the age issue would be you, so don't fall for that trap.

    What's at stake here is your happiness. In your culture sometimes personal happiness is not paramount whereas in the western world, personal ambitions are more than fine. Good luck with it all & best of luck convincing them as well.

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    http://www.yukoart.com/

    She was a teacher of mine, prolly one of the most prolific illustrators around today. She didn't go to art school til she was 30+ and working in corporate.

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    Thanks guys for your advice. Feeling slightly more confident and determined on how to tackle this.

    Meanwhile I'm going to check out on the college to see if I can shave off some of the fees with a scholarship.

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    Quote Originally Posted by slumberus View Post
    Thanks guys for your advice. Feeling slightly more confident and determined on how to tackle this.

    Meanwhile I'm going to check out on the college to see if I can shave off some of the fees with a scholarship.
    Go check out the Scholarship section of this place and see what they can do. And while you're at it, go ask a Financial Aid counselor at the school you're thinking about attending and asking them as well. I't's better to exhaust all of those resources first before having to dip into the wallet.

    Again, good luck.

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    Student loans maybe? Right now im close to 70 grand (dollars), but wouldnt trade my education for the world. Ive lived in paris for 2 years, stockholm for 2 years, new york for 2 years, have BA in grapic design, studying fine arts in NYC now, speak/write fluent french, and will probably take another semester in florence or Rome. All without the financial aid of my parents (thats a bit of a lie, they help me as soon as i get in to any financial trouble, and support me 100&#37

    What Im saying is that even though I have a massive loan, it has and will be worth it when i come out the other end. Maybe thats an option for you? I feel that student loans are the best loans you can have, because you really are investing in your life and future. Itll be a bitch to pay off, but hey, thats the price Ill have to pay (literally)
    cheers tim

    [url=http://galleryonefone.blogspot.com[/url] This would be my gallery in Sweden

    This would be my Pleine Air blog
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    Wow timp, 6 years, I wished I had such an opportunity to study around Europe and the US. :p

    I was thinking a 'loan' from my parents, as they are well capable of funding. Having them supporting me 100% would be great.

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    Quote Originally Posted by slumberus View Post
    Wow timp, 6 years, I wished I had such an opportunity to study around Europe and the US. :p

    I was thinking a 'loan' from my parents, as they are well capable of funding. Having them supporting me 100% would be great.
    Timp is dead on when it comes to describing student loans. They are the best kind of loans because it's an investment in YOU. Somewhere down the pipe, if things go well & you bust some ass, all of that investment will pay off.

    As far as that sickly feel of being in debt, get over it. There are scads of people in debt all the time. Think about how many people still have a mortgage payment- that's a loan! Think about how many people still have car notes- that's a loan! Think about how many people owe on their credit cards- that's a loan! What I'm trying to get at is that it's perfectly okay to be in debt as long as you can manage it. Once you're out of school, make the best effort you can in getting out of debt. The interest from student loans and mortgages can be written off on your taxes too so it's not completely horrible.

    And for future reference- when you do get completely out of debt it's the world's best feeling. You'll get there one day... trust me.

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