One of the best things you can do as an artist is go to local galleries. I live in Lancaster, so my favorite place to go is Gallery Row in downtown Lancaster. There, I can see what local artists are up to, and if I’m lucky even chat with them a little bit about their work. Networking is extremely important in the art world, and the best place to start is your hometown!
And remember to bring your sketchbook! Find a piece that you love in one of the galleries and sketch a certain section, or just draw an outline of the general composition. Also, make sure to write down names of artists whose work you can relate to, and look them up online afterwards.