Thursday, October 4, 2007

What do THEY want? What WILL they pay?

I got an Google alert with my name on it today. After looking at the alert, I realized I had posted on another blog about art marketing. The blogger, Kirsty Hall wrote a response to what I had written on her blog. The thesis of the original blog post and this current entry is art marketing. After responding to her first post about using blogs to market your art, she responded to my comment by saying she doesn’t really market or sell her art. Even though this seems to be contrary to the original post’s premise, I understood. In fact, I wrote back:
First of all, I haven't even finished reading what you wrote in this entry. The first paragraph made me want to write you again!! Your words are MY WORDS!
You wrote:
"I’m not currently set up to make money off my art."
I realized this past summer this is true for me too and it is my PROBLEM!! I don't think in terms of sales. I think in terms of creating and exhibiting. I don't think there is anything wrong with that. If I did, I wouldn't have had this mindset for the past 30 plus years. I am just now trying to change the paradigm of my thoughts. It is very ironic you chose my piece "BLUE" as an illustration for this post. That is the kind of stuff people want to buy from me. Do I sell it? NO! In fact, I am sitting here right now looking at this piece adorning my kitchen. I WANT it!! LOL LOL
I have to get over this kind of attitude if I want to move over to the side of the artists who sell. I have enrolled in the Business Academy sponsored by my city. It is free to citizens and the classes teach entrepreneurial skills. I start classes next week. I will check back with you in a few months to let you know how it goes and if it has had an impact on my art sales.
Thanks for starting this dialogue!!
Sheree Rensel
So I thank Kirsty for her candor. So many artists will talk the talk. They act as if they have a thriving art business and are “oh so self-supporting”. I have found this is a bunch of B.S. coupled with smoke and mirrors for most of those who talk it up. I certainly don’t think surviving on your art is impossible. I just think there are choices to be made and expectations to be adjusted. Also, I am looking for honest direction. To suggest you are making oodles of money with your art only to find you are hardly making a profit or not making enough money to live off independently in a less than starving artist way is dishonest. I am seeking the truth and the reality of some kind of middle class, self-supporting artist lifestyle.
I am doing the work now. My current question is:
“What do THEY (art buyers) want? What will they PAY (a realistic amount that will allow me to pay for my materials and a portion of my time in order to survive as a human being)? I am not going to give this stuff away. I just can’t. In fact, that would be a moot point, very counterproductive, and not supporting the arts as a profession. I have too much self-esteem to let that happen.

1 comment:

Melody said...

Wow Sheree....never were truer words spoken. This post totally resonated with me as I can so identify with it