I just couldn't post that image of me as Ann Landers again. Here's a chicken skull instead.
I was also asked by the same reader;
And what are the 5 most significant actions you took to raise your profile in the art biz?
I will begin with the usual disclaimer that my profile in the art biz could use a fair bit of raising yet. I have had some success by these means (bullets please!)
- The blog, has been a real good method of getting my name recognition up. It is a lot of work but it doesn't cost very much. I think it is real important to have other painters know who you are. In the long run that percolates out into the market, even though they are not your customer.I am not sure that this is useful for a lot of people but I do know other artists who do this well. I don't think you can do a good blog just about yourself and your own art. I think people want to be rewarded by learning something when they log on. You need to have something of value to say.
- I think doing shows and being in members organizations is good too. I show at the Rockport Art Association, the Guild of Boston Artists and sometimes at Old Lyme. They are not really sales venues for me, but they get your work out in front of people. You should do some of those shows every year. Also jurying shows is a good thing to do that establishes the opinion that you are expert and theoretically know what you are talking about.
- Being in magazines either as editorial content or in advertising is good too. I have a few of those every year and although it is not obvious what effect they have it does build name recognition. I seem to get into a bunch of smaller regional magazines, as they call me. I like them, and always am happy to provide them with jpegs and quotes.
- The gallery in Rockport was a great thing for reputation, I no longer have my own gallery, but when I did, people would say "he has a gallery in Rockport" and that made me seem "real" It is about being "real", there are a zillion artists. It is good to separate yourself from the herd, something like having a gallery or being important in an art organization or whatever, that helps you to control the five word description that is out there on you. When I was young "he did a duck stamp" was the last word. There are lots of those descriptions today. Madonna collects her art. He has a painting in the white house. Or she did a mural in the airport. All of those are examples of a few word statement of the sort you want attached to your name. Some examples of what you don't want are: he's OK when he's sober. He used to be good when he was younger, or he paints them all the same. You have to try and control that five word description if you can.
- Sometimes just hanging out for a long time and being known as someone who works hard and has stood the ground for years is the best thing you can get. You keep popping up, till people think "Oh yeah I've heard of him" You can be good, but new and young and you just have to hang around until they notice you. If you are good, eventually you will get recognized. But it can take a long time. There are a lot of people clamoring for their spot in the sun. It may seem a little unfair but just being around a long time is a good thing. There are artists who suddenly appear and then rapidly disappear. I won't name them here.