To be an artist, whether you are an actor, a painter, or an opera singer, you need to believe that you have something special inside of you that no one else has, and that you must share it with the world, no matter what the cost. This frame of mind is very important for an artist, because if they believe that they have something kind of okay inside of them that probably several other people have, and a few people out there might even care about it, then they will probably not be motivated to produce their best work.
This absolute confidence that they are amazing, talented, above-average human beings that are going to be remembered in the history books for their great works is also accompanied by a desperate need for approval, validation, and external acceptance. The sad irony of being an artistic type is that the work you produce is wonderful just because you created it, but that means almost nothing if nobody else likes it. So the typical artist goes around creating things that they love, and that they hope at least a few other people will love too, even though they don't care about that, except that they care deeply about that, and in a few lucky cases this will make them enough money to live on.
Most artists do not make enough money to live on solely from their art. They need another source of income. Otherwise they will be "starving artists," and will wither away and die. No, just kidding, they will eat only at McDonald's and get really fat and then die. Clearly these actors, painters, sculptors, and opera singers need jobs, and so what do they do? They take menial, minimum wage type jobs in which they receive little respect and no career satisfaction. They are waiters, secretaries, line cooks, delivery people, personal assistants, cashiers, and temps.
Why do they do this? Why take a fairly low paying job in which you are at other people's beck and call all day? Is it the flexibility of hours? Partly. Is it because they do not enjoy money and/or free time? No. Is it because they have no real world skills? Well, I guess kind of. No, I will tell you why they do it. It is because if an artistic type person took a real job, with a real title, and real advancement opportunity, then people would start to respect them. And not as artists. People would personally validate them every day, and even look up to them a little. They would no longer need their art to fulfill them, and they would be just like everyone else.
We artists need to be mistreated! We need to feel like we're on the lowest rung of the ladder! How else can we produce our art? How else can we stick it to the man? If we get no respect or career satisfaction anywhere else, then we have no choice but to put out the greatest works of art and music the world has ever seen! That will show all those people that we spent years getting coffee for! Won't they be laughing out the other sides of their mouths when they see us on the TV being all famous and stuff! Take that, previous boss for whom I had little affection!
And so, from now until the end of time, artists will work at crappy little jobs, making just enough money to survive, until their big break comes and they won't need that job anymore. And it's a good thing they will. If they all got real jobs, the world would be a much darker place. Plus, who would make our pizzas?