When they judge ancient civilizations, one of the yardsticks by which they are measured is the art they left behind. The artists themselves may not have been treasured in their own lifetimes, but they made art nonetheless.
Have you ever heard about the great Rembrandt?
Have you ever heard about how he could paint?
And he didn’t have enough money for his brushes
And they thought it was rather quaint
Van Morrison “The Great Deception” from Hard Nose The Highway
Starving artist may be a romantic notion. But I remember the Peanuts strip (sadly, have not found by searching) where Charlie Brown and Sally are sitting on the couch watching television and Sally says “That composer’s life was so romantic.” to which Charlie Brown replies, “But it was so tragic.” and Sally says “It’s romantic when it happens to somebody else.”
Art is stronger than language and older than books. When the electricity is out and the internet is down, you can still take a stick or a rock and leave your mark. If you are a boy, you can piss your name in the snow. If you have a lipstick in your purse, make your mark on the mirror. Never stop. Never let anyone erase you.