Two Tips for Becoming a Success

Organize and use your own mailing list. Just about every professional artist I’ve worked with has a mailing list that consists of names and addresses accumulated over the years. It’s an inexpensive way for them—and you—to keep collectors updated and interested with postcards, invitations to shows, articles, press releases, show schedules and newsletters. Your mailing list is made up of five groups: collectors and other interested people; museum directors, curators and staff; gallery dealers and staff; arts writers and other media outlets; and arts professionals like grant writers. Depending on what you’re planning to send, you may want to mail to some or all of them. Get into the habit of using your mailing list at least three times a year to keep your art audience up to date. Learn to price your artwork consistently. A challenge for many artists is how to figure out the pricing structure for their work. The best way I’ve found to do this is to research current prices of work in the marketplace similar to yours in skill, size, medium and subject. Visit art fairs, galleries and other artists’ studios to find comparable prices. Remember, you can always raise your prices, but if you start out too high, discounting your art will hurt your credibility and damage your career. If you want lower-priced options for collectors with smaller art budgets, consider selling giclees or offset lithograph reproductions.

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