What makes an artist successful?
For some, the satisfaction of having created a piece art is enough. These are the people who make art to relieve stress, to spend time creating their own worlds, to exercise their imagination, or just to pass the time. For them, it does not matter if someone else sees their art. Their art was successful to them simply because they made it and liked it. If this is all you need from art, more power to you; this article is not for you. You are already a success and need read no further.
Many artists, however, want more than the simple self satisfaction of creating art. They may want sales, or they may want to make a statement. They might want to influence minds, inspire others, or simply make people happy. For these people, success as an artist means RECOGNITION.
So what is the number one mistake these artists make?
The biggest mistake artists make in trying to achieve success is this: They spend too much of their “art” time making art and not enough getting people to look at it. The key to success as an artist is to find your audience and to get them to see your art. For an artist, the blanket term for this is Marketing.
So how much time should I spend marketing?
Well, it depends a bit on how good your are at marketing and the various channels you use as well as how fast you can produce art, but on average you should be spending about fifty percent of your dedicated art time to marketing. Yes, I said that. Roughly, HALF your time dedicated to art should be spent getting your art out there to be seen.
Why so much?
You need to spend that much time marketing because the art market is huge. A lot of people want to be artists, and there is a flood of art out there. People are not likely to find your art by accident. You have to bring them to it, and doing so requires effort.
So how do I market art?
The good news is that countless ways exist to get your art out there. For a creative person willing to find new ways to market, the sky’s the limit. And, guess what? You’re in luck; you’re an artist. That makes you a creative person.
Just to help you out though, at least for marketing online, you have this blog as a resource. In coming articles, I intend to share with you some of the methods that I have found for successfully marketing my own art, and perhaps they can work for you as well.
Don’t forget to check out this week’s sponsor, Dick Blick Art Materials (since I offer this site for free, I have to fund it somehow 😉 )
8 Replies to “The Biggest Mistake Artists Make”
What a wonderful and insightful blog. As someone who is just striking out to try to make some money from my art and modeling, I really appreciate the insights from someone who has! I will keep following you, Daniel! 🙂
DAGrant / Delaney
I’ll be looking forward to your posts Daniel. While my art seems to sell itself as cards, postcards, mugs etc on Zazzle, as well as the occasional print, I have yet to make a sale on Fine Art America.
That’s I surprise, I could see this one selling, it’s great: http://fineartamerica.com/featured/the-autumn-fairy-jayne-wilson.html
Do you have a Facebook fanpage by the way? It took me a while to build mine up, but now that seems to be where a lot of my traffic comes from.
Funny you should pick that one Daniel — it’s one of my popular pieces on Zazzle 🙂
I do have a Facebook Fan page, but it doesn’t get much attention. I need to learn how to schedule posts because with a day job and a long commute, I’m bad about posting on a regular basis.
I know you can use facebook itself to schedule posts, but I use a tool called hootsuite to do that. Mostly because I can schedule tweets at the same time. It was actually the subject of my latest video: http://youtu.be/v31iegZQ2as
It took me an hour or so to figure out, but I use it to schedule all of my posts.
I just got started with Hootsuite. I’ll have to check your video and see if I can get the scheduled figured out. thanks.