Matthew, art is an inspired talent; and I believe all artists are called to their profession. In this calling, I mean you truly love creating your art. Depending on the medium one choses, one can find all sorts of creations and passions and adventures to feed your art. No matter what, an artist will create. I think the big decision is whether to make a living with your art or continue another profession that will allow you time and energy to continue to create. This is where the boundaries of art and living your art get muddied. I am a performing artist and have been performing in one way or another since I was very young. My performance has at times returned with monetary value, but I chose to find professions that would allow me time to write and perform which also means time alone to think and rehearse and memorize. The reward for me is knowing that performing arts and visual arts can touch our souls.
Having gone through college and majoring in my performance talents, I can tell you that there were times I questioned whether I would find venues that would appreciate my art. College and life can be brutal to artists, as it can to all of us. You must decide what is important to you, and why you want to be an artist and be willing to take the steps through the peaks and valleys. I have chosen to continue, but not to be rich or famous but to feed my soul and hopefully along the way touch someone else's life in a meaning full way.