Artists have an important job. They inspire people. They create joy. They create vision and beauty. They take interesting materials and turn them into something that people can understand and learn from. They generate topics that agitate. They like to shake things up and make people think! Creativity is their passion! But to get their ideas and art out into the market place, artists need to market! And a lot of artists aren’t good at business...they’re good at making ART!
But here’s an idea -- artists helping artists! Successful artists can enroll help so they don’t have to do it all themselves. And who better to help than another artist? Below are 10 ideas that an artist can implement with another artist or group of artists that can help with marketing their work.
1. On your artist blog, web site or newsletter, ask another artist to do a guest spot. Interview them on their style and process and have them talk about their art. Or else feature another artist’s work on your blog with your favorite piece of theirs and have them feature you on theirs. That will double both your exposure. It makes an even bigger impact if you have actually purchased a piece of their art and can talk about it in a heartfelt way. Be real because people will know if you're not.
2. You can also exchange links to each other’s web sites. And you can comment on each others blogs, or art selling web sites such as at imagekind.com or heart each other on etsy.com. This creates links back to your own artists page or blog.
3. On Twitter, tweet about another artist’s new painting, blog or web site and have them tweet about you. To be helpful, retweet an artist’s info if they’re having a drawing or they have something newsworthy going on such as a new exhibit or booth at a tradeshow.
4. Have a show together. Sometimes an artist doesn’t have enough new pieces to put up in a show at a local business establishment. So look for another artist whose work compliments yours. There are many cafes, banks, hair salons, restaurants, and corporations that like to show art on their walls. Create a show proposal, and present it to the business owner about putting art on their walls.
5. Do a mailing together. Split the costs of a postcard or greeting card. Many people love to get a hand signed real paper greeting card in the mail. Two artists can split the printing and postage so it doesn’t seem like a huge cost. Focus on your collectors. They will be happy to see your work and be treated to something special. Also they will appreciate seeing another artists work that may interest them if you create a card with both artists work on it.
6. Connect with people. Create a special event. Have an Artists Studio Progressive Dinner. This can be a fun way to share your art with your friends and collectors. Join with a couple other artists who live near you and move from art studio to art studio for each part of the meal -- appetizer, salad, main meal, dessert. Invite your collectors and art loving friends. You can have an Artist’s Tea Party or a wine and cheese party. Just put your artwork into the mix.
7. Do a class together. If you have similar techniques or styles, doing a class together can create a following and a way to connect with the community.
8. Create an art book with a writer. Sell it on your web site or at your art show, or give it to your collectors to thank them for their loyality, or as a free drawing on your Facebook Fanship page, or blog. You supply the images and you could ask a writer friend to create the words for it, whether it be poetry or just a finely worded introduction. It could be a themed book such as bird art, landscapes or abstract. Be creative. For self-publishing books online check out http://www.blurb.com, http://www.lulu.com, http://www.instantpublisher.com/
9. Share and exchange your talents. If you’re good at understanding how Facebook, Twitter and Linked-in work but not good at photographing your art, exchange your talents with another artist. For example, if you’re good at WordPress but not photographing your work, exchange your talent with a photographer friend. They can photograph your work and you can show them how to use WordPress for their blog.
10. Create a unique web site with other artists if you share something in common with them. This group of artists showcases small art -- see http://smallartshowcase.com/index.html but maybe you can do landscapes, or dogs or abstract art. Use your imagination!
There will always be people who buy art. You just need to find them and get in front of them. Marketing is key. I’m sure there are lots of other ideas you can do with another artist to market your art. Sit down and brainstorm, think of ideas you can do together! Share the legwork, cost and production to get your work known to your market. And have FUN cause that's what it's all about and people are drawn to others who are enjoying what they do. One also needs to give up any jealous or hoarding feelings about sharing your ideas with other artists. There are enough people who want to purchase art to go around. Hoarding your ideas and not sharing them with other artists and people that can help you should be avoided. There is enough!
If you have some other art marketing ideas artists can do with other artists, please leave them in the comments of this blog. Feel free to use this blog post on your web site, blog or newsletter, however please be sure to include this credit: Copyright 2009 Lindy Gruger Hanson. Lindy creates colorful, whimsical acrylic paintings at http://www.lgruger.com