Promote Yourself and Get Out-Of-Town!
In today’s marketplace, artists must self promote. We can no longer rely solely on agents and galleries to sell our work. Here are what I consider some of the necessities for today’s professional artist: a website, a blog, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Etsy accounts, writing articles for your local newspaper, applications to juried shows that fit your style, and talking about your work at every opportunity. Always have business cards on you and hand them out. You never know where that one little card might lead. Promote, promote, promote.
Location is also critical to our business. Many of us start with sales in our local community and if we are fortunate to have a gallery in town, our work may gain a close-to-home retail outlet. Over this past summer I was blessed to work for a great couple here in Bracebridge, Jodi and Jake Good, the current owners of Silver Bridge Gallery. The Gallery has also handled sales of some of my work hanging at The Diesel House Cafe here in town. Unfortunately Silver Bridge will be closing at the end of this year unless a buyer comes forward. If you have interest or know of anyone who might be interested in purchasing the business, please have them contact Jodi. Contact information is on the website. Jodi is a strong supporter of my work and currently offers several of my paintings for sale at Silver Bridge.
While a local market is wonderful, most of us need to get out-of-town (particularly if you live in a small community) to grow our client base. If you live in an active and vibrant arts community, like I do, you may find the market saturated with great talent. Muskoka is a stimulating environment in which to create but to expand sales I need to look for places to carry my work beyond our borders – even 60-100 miles away can make a huge difference to our potential sales. When you get the chance to exhibit your artistry in place where you are a stranger, you can attract a whole new audience to your work.
I’ve learned this summer that self-promotion definitely draws the public to shows. Now I am working on getting out-of-town. Along with a few fellow artists, we’ve searched out and submitted work to galleries in Barrie and Toronto. Early next year we will be showing in North Bay as well.
Here is what I have scheduled until the end of the year with images of my paintings in each gallery/show.
‘Square Foot Show’ – The Edge Gallery, 32 Dunlop St .W., Barrie, Ontario.
November 1-December 31, 2013.
Hours: Tuesday to Saturday – 10:00 a.m to 6:00 p.m.
All work on 12 x 12 inch canvases with a variety of subject matter.
‘Twisted Art Exhibit’ – Project Gallery Toronto, 1109 Queen St E., Toronto,
Opening November 7, Reception 7-11 pm. Show runs to November 21.
Hours: Wednesday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday: 12-6 PM
NBMG Wine Tasting: Thursday Nov 14th (7-11 pm)
Interactive Live Painting: Friday Nov 15th (7-11 pm)
The exhibition features works that address the limitations and nuisances of perception by displaying works that can intrigue, guide and trick the eye.
Muskoka Arts & Crafts at the Canada Summit Centre – 20 Park Drive, Huntsville.
November 14, 2013 – February 10, 2014. Opening reception: November 14, 5-7 pm.
Showcasing the talent of Muskoka Arts & Crafts members. A wide range of work, mediums and levels of experience.
Christmas Art & Craft Show – Luc Sculpture School and Studios, 663 Greenwood Ave., Toronto.
November 26 – January 5, 2014
Hours: Tuesday to Thursday 10 am – 10 pm, Friday and Saturday 10 am – 5 pm, Sunday 12 – 5 pm
Uniquely crafted, original artworks and handmade crafts: painting, pottery, photography, sculpture and more!
© Wendie Donabie 2013
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This is excellent advice. While I am not an artist, I have found that the social media sites have been very helpful to me in promoting my blog. Each week more and more readers find me and the list of followers keeps growning. I would think that the more you exhibit your work,in different communities, the more pieces you will sell and your followers will increase.