Most successful artists I know have taken the time to learn some business skills and tend to be fairly organised, and I believe that having a basic understanding of business can help you:
- Make more sales
- Get paid on time
- Create a professional appearance towards galleries, art authorities, but most importantly, your customers.
- Give you more time in the studio. When this side of your practice is organised, you have more time to do what you do best, and that is, create.
Becoming aware of what skills can support you in your business, can help you identify areas of strengths and weaknesses, and discover what you enjoy doing (along with what you don't enjoy). Some things can be outsourced at a later date, or you can dive in and learn how to do it yourself!
Here are a few areas you need to...
Having the right mindset is an integral part of being a professional artist. It is something you can develop over time, and you will find you gain more confidence as you go along. You need a certain amount of mental strength, and it is essential to believe in yourself along the way. There will be times of self-doubt for sure, (all artists experience this throughout their careers, especially the good ones), but deep down you know you have what it takes to make a difference to the world.
Here I will share some tips and advice on how you can develop a successful mindset.
Art is created from the heart.
Fear is created from the mind.
Love and fear cannot operate at the same time. The human body is not capable of it.
Fear cripples your creativity.
Having a blog can be beneficial for artists, as it lets people get to know you and learn more about your process and how you make your work. You can also share anything that inspires you and show behind the scenes of your business. This helps people get to know you, like you and trust you. Think about who you are writing for and why.
Blogging can be especially useful for creative businesses. Recording your artistic journey is not only interesting to your audience, but can help track your development and increase your exposure at the same time.
Bring traffic to your website
If you’re trying to create, market, and sell your work from your website, you need traffic coming to your website. One of the best ways you can bring in traffic is through a blog. When you have...
Learning to deal with disappointment is an important skill to develop as an artist, as there will be times when your work is rejected for various reasons. All creative people experience this throughout their careers, and how you handle it defines your likelihood of reaching future success.
First, you need to remember that it is not you that is being rejected, just something you created. You can create more. Learning to be resilient and understanding this is all part of the process will help you get through and keep going.
Getting a negative comment about your work or not getting accepted by a gallery or art show can really hurt at first. I know, I have been there. Our work is so personal that it is hard not to let it get to us. The disappointment can be overwhelming at first, however I...
There are a few reasons why you may need to resize your images. The main one is that photos taken with your iPhone or camera tend to be quite large in size, so need to be reduced before going onto your website. Website images are only seen on a small screen so don't need to be too large or high in resolution, also large images take a long time to load and can slow your website speed down.
Photos for social media are fine at any size, but it is important to make sure your website loads quickly because people don't have a long attention span these days!
I use a tool called PicResize which is free and easy to use, which I have demonstrated in the video above. You can also use it to crop, and edit your photos to make them look their best.
You can upload multiple images and resize...
This is how I started a successful art business from scratch. I hope it offers you some insight into how you can develop and grow your own art business.
While I studied Fine Art and graduated in 2000, the following years brought with them the odd painting here and there, a few commissions, a couple of joint exhibitions and while I sold a few paintings, I had other jobs to support myself.
In 2015, I had been living in Tasmania for three years, and working in the retail section of a day spa while painting on the weekends. I found the Tasmanian landscape inspiring and took photos of places I visited during my first years. I knew my job was coming to an end, it wasn't challenging me and I felt I needed to move into something more creative.
I was having singing lessons at the time, and my...
When I was at art school, I spent a summer working in an art cafe, which was a small gallery space combined with an eating area.
I loved being there as I got to interact with the artists, help them sell their work, observe what sold, as well as serving food and drinks to art lovers.
There were a number of painters, illustrators, potters, printers and photographers there, but one observation of the way two potters worked stayed with me.
One particular potter had been a ceramic artist all his life, his work was technically brilliant and you couldn't fault it.
The other potter was a novice, learning his craft for the first time after switching from a career in teaching. His work was raw, rough around the edges, but had a certain charm.
Now if you'd asked me which potter was the more...
While I love sharing the successes I have achieved as an artist, it is often a lot more useful and interesting to share my mistakes! Especially if they can save you from making the same ones, and I hope these are helpful to you and your business.
- I didn't start an email list in the beginning. While it is never too late to start building an email list, I didn't do this for the first couple of years of being in business, so left a lot of money on the table here. Why? Because customers who have already bought from you are much more likely to buy again. While I collected email addresses from the people who bought my paintings, they were often on scraps of paper, soon to be discarded after they had been added to my gmail, and I never contacted them again. Once I set up my Wix...
What is a lead magnet?
A lead magnet is something of value you give away for free on your website in exchange for an email address.
You might think that sounds a bit too 'marketing' for artists, but I will show you how it can help you grow your customer base. Depending on where you are on your journey, if you have a website, then it's a great idea to start building an email list. This is a list of people who are interested in you and your work. They may be past customers, current customers, those who are interested but haven't bought yet, as well as your own tribe of supportive friends and family.
Once you have a few people on your list, you can send out an email newsletter once a month or so, to let people know what you are up to. You can share new works, let them know about...
1. Focus on the major things not the minor things
So many people seem to mistake movement for achievement and end up just frantically doing 'busy' work, but feeling so stuck and wondering why they’re not making progress. The problem is that a lot of us focus 80% of our time on the minor stuff, rather than the major stuff that’s actually going to move the needle. One of the best things you can do to avoid falling into this trap is to track your activity. Make a list of all the things that you’re working on throughout an average day and then go over that list and decide whether each one is a major or minor task. For example, a minor task would be replying to emails or creating a graphic, whereas a major task would include focusing on vision and strategy, or working...
I'm a keen runner and recently did a 10km race which I have taken part in several times. However, this time was different. I found my ideal pace early on and stuck to it throughout. I was less bothered about my overall time and as a result, enjoyed it more. When you take part in a race with thousands of people, there are always going to be runners who are faster than you, and those who are slower than you.
Mindset plays a part here, as it can quickly feel overwhelming when people pass you at a greater speed and make it look easy. The thing to remember here is they have probably been running a lot longer than you (don't compare your chapter one to someone else's chapter twenty), or they run a lot more often than you.
But then there are people who you pass, who look like they...
Investing in your art business is a crucial part of growth! Investing in yourself tells me that you are thinking about your business long term. I firmly believe that if you take the time to learn about the basics business and apply the principles, you will supercharge your productivity and success.
It took me too long to take my business seriously and begin investing in it. You do not need a lot of money to get started, but if you want other people to take your business seriously, you need to take yourself seriously. Upgrading your camera, editing software, subscriptions, apps, and website can make leaps and bounds in your art business.
If you are looking to make some basic business investments I suggest the following:
- Macbook Pro. I used an old PC for the first three...