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Harold Shull

3 Years Ago

Marketing Yourself

Hiya guys,

I was just posting some information on another topic about marketing your art and I thought it would be a great topic for anybody who wants to jump in here and tell us about how you marketed your art. I have done it all from newspaper ads to brochures to art shows to DVDs to making a nuisance of myself and giving my business cards to anybody who has a palm in their hand.

Here are a few DVD covers that I designed, printed and burnt the DVDs for.

Art Prints Art Prints Sell Art Online

What are some of the ways you have marketed yourselves?

Hal

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Pure, unadulterated elegance, Hal.

Don't have time to dig them up tonight, but somewhere in my archives I have a set of 'leave-behinds.'

Anyone know what a leave-behind is?

 

Cara Bevan

3 Years Ago

I'm a noob to the whole marketing struggle and all I've done is online spamming - being a part of art social sites and interacting with other artists. Of course, that doesn't gain you a buying crowd. Lots of fans and followers, but it won't bring many commissions or sales. I like your idea with DVDs and brochures. Have you made an art book yet? Heard that helps some, but the upfront cost of making the books can be pretty high.

I'm interested in hearing more about what you've done to promote yourself. I haven't gotten very far in my short 3 yr painting business! XD

 

Harold Shull

3 Years Ago

Thank you Patrick,

A leave behind is something that a Creative Director, Art Director or anybody else that you want to remember you. It could be a press release, brochure, business card (always), DVD or CD of your work or anything that will be a reminder of who you are. Each piece must have your name, telephone number and a brief description of what you do.

 

Class is in session!

 

Harold Shull

3 Years Ago

Hiya Cara,

I am a firm believer in the fact that I won't chase my profits. What I mean by that is keep it simple and inexpensive. That's why I have always designed, printed and produced all of my promotional pieces. It helps me to control my overhead. I wouldn't want to pick up work just to pay for the supplies and print that I used for my self promotions. There are many other ways of selling yourself, for ex: Hang your art in libraries, restaurants, banks and art shows. I have done all of these. None of which cost me a penny. Also spread the word with emails, letters and friends. Small ads in newspapers are excellent help in picking up portrait and pet portrait commissions.

 

Angelina Vick

3 Years Ago

I just started selling, I have nothing to add to this but I will be part of the class. I want to learn how to market myself.
I can't find things that are free to do. Everything costs money.

 

Harold Shull

3 Years Ago

Here is one that will give you some exercise and financial rewards as well. Design and print (one Color) doorknob hangers. Take your bicycle and a bag full of doorknob hangers and ride your bicycle around your neighborhood posting on mailboxes and doors information about yourself such as: Portraits, pet portraits, house portraits, etc. Try to hit homes of people who don't know you. "Spread the Word!"

 

Sibel Kantola

3 Years Ago

Thank you for useful information. I have been making exhibitions since 2000 as an artist. Only way I made my living was through my graphic design work. Making paintings or any kind of other media was only for exhibitions. I didnt do much selling. My most successful art selling was selling original drawings at the Christmas Market inFinland (This is where I live). Year after year I had more and more people buying my drawings. So, I can do selling by showing my work and explaining about the story behind the work. Most of my works are based on stories... It doesnt feel or look the same on the internet. I wished I could just have christmas market everyday on this page!!!

Thank you for this discussion. I will try to improve my portfolio in my site: www.belgrafik.com

Regards,
Sibel Kantola

 

Harold Shull

3 Years Ago

Angel, here are some freebies. Go to your neighborhood vets and ask them if you could hang a sign with an example of your art that sells you as a pet portrait artist. Also go to realtors' offices and ask if you can hang an ad with example featuring yourself as a house portrait artist. None of these will cost you a penny unless you offer a percentage of your profits as an incentive for them to sell your art.

 

Harold Shull

3 Years Ago

Sibel the bad thing about selling your art at shows is this - count the number of artists that are in the show. If the number is 150 then that's your odds of making a sale. Pretty steep, huh? The restaurants, libraries, realtors, vets, and banks odds are zip. You are only competing with yourself. I like those odds better than the art shows. The other thing about art shows is this - I made over $17,000 from my last two art shows. Would you want to compete with artists of my experience at these art shows? I deal in odds. Where are my best odds of making a sale. I just gave you a few.

 

Harold Shull

3 Years Ago

Cara,

I have just checked out your art and you would be a natural as a pet portrait artist or anything else you put your mind to. One thing I try to do is let my art speak for itself. My art can read like fine poetry but when I start talking I can sometimes come across as uneducated stumblebum. For this reason I try to include examples of my art in all of my ads, mailers, DVD covers or anything else that I use to advertise myself. This makes people think they are getting something important, that is, until they see me in my jeans with holes in the pockets, my old Yankee cap and my dirty tennis shoes.

Always let your strengths work for you. Don't hide them. I use to be too shy to tell people that I was an artist until I met George Torjussen. He was a friend of mine who use to carry these huge paintings with him where ever he went. To give you an idea of how big these paintings were, he usually painted on doors. Everybody knew he was an artist. He was selling his paintings for thousands and thousands of $. He can be found here at FAA.

http://fineartamerica.com/profiles/george-torjussen.html

 

Phylicia Wolf

3 Years Ago

Well done covers and thanks for the info! Already started doing that, concentrating locally.

 

Vincent Von Frese

3 Years Ago

I'm going to try promoting at a home and garden show. The only thing is many if not most of the visitors in this wealthy area are probably artists themselves. But it is not an art show as such so I have a chance to get direct contact with interested people for my portrait sculpture and paintings of landcsapes.

 

Olga Hutsul

3 Years Ago

Harold, you are absolutely right, we all have to take time and develop ourselves as brands, just look around, evaluate honestly what we are good for and come up with a plan... And be flexible with that plan... I actually thought I would get more use of internet... again will have to change the direction...

 

Vincent Von Frese

3 Years Ago

Wonder if anyone at FAA buys their own canvas prints framed to sell in a show. It would cost more out on the street for this investment probably.

 

Harold Shull

3 Years Ago

Olga, The internet is only as good as your phonebook. How many times has somebody called you and said, "I was just reading the phonebook and saw your name?" The internet is just like a phonebook. Unless they know you are there, your phone and email address will collect a lot of dust. You have to start with mailing campaigns, word of mouth and any other advertisements you can think of. There is a lot of work out there, you just have to announce yourself so that they know who and where you are. There is an old expression that says "Blow your own horn because nobody else will."

 

Sibel Kantola

3 Years Ago

Thank you so much! I will try to make flyers!! Not in here though (I am in Korea and cant speak the language). I go back to Finland in summer. I used to have exhibitions in culture centers and libraries, but not in restaurants, banks and vets...It can be interesting. I also love the idea of the flyers and bicycle... I live in Turku, so it is very nice town to bicycle during summer. This can be a summer project, to take the flyers to some mail boxes? I hope it wont make people a bit enoyed. But I can try to make it look as cheerful as possible!

I have never made $17,000! I did sell several paintings in one exhibition, but they all were like 400 to 800 euros. I guess I am not even close to your level! Thank you again for taking time to give advices to others!

 

Harold Shull

3 Years Ago

In the previous posts I have been dealing with what I call personal work. The other side of the coin is commercial work. That's a totally different ball game. That arena is where I made enough money to buy a home in the suburbs, put 3 children in college and support a family of 5. The commercial arena is where you have to be well grounded and versed in the business of the art game. I met and dealt with more people than you can think of who had one idea in their heads - How do I get Harold Shull to work for me for as little as possible and have him thanking me for it? There are a lot of Do's and Don't's in this area.

With the help of some of the other professionals who frequent these boards, I will attempt to open some doors for you. But right now I am tired and have to sack out. Until tomorrow...

 

Angelina Vick

3 Years Ago

I like the doorknob idea, but I don't know how to advertise myself. I am an abstract painter/multimedia artist and a photographer. What would I put on a doornob? I like the vet idea too because I have done work with shelters.

Pet photographer? People wouldn't want abstracts of pets, they would want realism. Then I would have to have a place to take the pictures, their homes? That raises safety issues.....ugh my brain hurts already...this is why I suck at this.

"angels abstract pet portraits" ...... Lol.....if that isn't pimping myself out, wow,....but it could be alot of fun too. :) I love animals and there are dogs everywhere around here.

Thank you for opening this thread, I will attempt to glean any wisdom I can.

 

Gra Howard

3 Years Ago

Because I mainly design t-shirts I designed one with my name and e-mail addy on it. Now I wander around like a walking billboard. LOL.
Also annoy people on Facebook and twitter. Another idea that popped into my pretty empty head was a bumper sticker. I am lucky in the fact my wife has a Mustang and they arent exactly something you see every day in England. I drop off cards and flyers at Diners. Cards I print off computer and flyers the same.Everything done for little money. Prints and posters I have sold seem to have come from posting them on twitter ;0) gra

 

Colin Hurley

3 Years Ago

I believe the best way to market your work is to find yourself.

 

Phil Vooz

3 Years Ago

Thanks for generously sharing your knowledge and experience with us Harold. When anyone asks me what I am doing with myself now that I am retired, I mention my art and say, "Google my name and take a look at what I am doing." People use Google all the time and I think there is something curious or interesting about seeing the name of a person they know or have met show up when they click "Search". I know that I have gotten some sales doing this.

 

Jo Hoden

3 Years Ago

Hi Hal and everyone,
What a great thread, and good advice, I market myself everywere, I work on the terrace of my local cafe in summer and inside it in winter, have 3 exhibts going all year, Mine is all personal contact, for clients father away they have my artsites to visit , I run my photgraphy along side,and because Im always seen get people coming up and asking me to do there photography , example: the local rugby club now use me on a weekly basis, from that Ive got weddings, and from my expos Ive gotten the festivals, and it grows.
Always have my cards, flyers ect with me ,and always reply toute suite to enquiries, and always have people who do not mind if someone phones them for a referance of my work.
From the weddings 2 of them brought artwork as well as presants for people, so one helps the other.
I do a lot of footwork ,its down to good old fashioned hard work ,
Have a good rapour with the local press,it is hard because I am dealing with a second language,nearly all my work is from the french side, the french really do have an understanding of the art, and are very supportive of me in there country, they know Im alone, they know I support myself, and they know I work hard, .
and Hal, you so right with the CDS and things like that , I made 1 coffee table book , it cost me about 20 euros, which to me is a lot, but it sure does work, I use it to showcase, and people love it, its got me a lot of work,and has paid for itself real quick,it was funny to because, 10 people ordered it (the book itself) you don't get much from that, but I got work from those people , it was like an advert they had paid for ,for me.Cool.
I better hush now, thats just a small example of my ways of doing things, its so cool hearing everybodys ways, thanks again Hal, for all the advice, it is really helpful . .... :)

 

Vincent Von Frese

3 Years Ago

Hal;
one way to market is to not only get up great art and let people know but to have some sort of gimmick. A fragrance for instance. I'm thinking about comming up with some sort of snake oil fragrance. The commercial would have the sound of a rattlesnake's buzzzzz. Everyone would want to get a
buzzzz and while telling other who ask where they got it they might buy a print or something!

All the stars sell a linbe of fragrance and clothing to keep in the money between gigs.

 

Ely Arsha

3 Years Ago

Hal - this is a very helpful thread - I need to get off my bum and start putting these things into motion.

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John Vondra

3 Years Ago

See this Group and promtote using FaceBook Page Links

FA Group:

Promote Your Art

http://fineartamerica.com/groups/promote-your-art.html?tab=overview

cut and paste it if no direct link

 

Val Stokes

3 Years Ago

Haroldl, you are a good and generous man and a wonderful artist. I hope your previously discouraged soul has recovered and I wish you well. Times have to change--nothing stays the same and you do have a lot of talent. We are all waiting for that time. I wish you well..

 

Lynda Stevens

3 Years Ago

Hi there

I am a noob to FAA too. I certainly wish I knew the secret to marketing too. I am baased in Budapest in Europe and if you have not been to a school but are self-taught as I am, no gallery will look at you. Ihave exhibitedin cafés and at galleries in schools - one seemed quite a good venue, and my work doesalways get a positive response. This does not translate as sales though.

Getting a book of your work published in Blurb does not cost alot, though finding things to improve in proof copies can start to get expensive. Ihave two books of my artwork on Blurb.

I am on facebook too:

http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Nexus7s-Artwork/106665059986

And I will certainly fan you if you fan me

 

Lynda Stevens

3 Years Ago

And yes Harold

Your DVD looks very classy. Congratulations

 

Harold Egbune

3 Years Ago

Hello Harold,
Your post is quite informative.Check out this website https://cafepress.com/cheche1 to see how I promote my own artworks.You too can get involved. Thanks Egbune harold Cheche

 

Lynda Stevens

3 Years Ago

Here is my facebook page:

http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Nexus7s-Artwork/106665059986

I have taken the t-shirt route too - on certain of my works:

http://www.zazzle.com/my/products/public?sr=250910734703627168

I have sold a mousepad to someone I know on this site and hope to be able to order a little merchandise soon

 

Harold Shull

3 Years Ago

Hiya guys,

Thank you very much Val and Lynda for your kindness and support of this thread. And, thank you to all of the other artists who have contributed an any way to this topic.

It's been a while since I contributed new information to this thread because of my full-time stint as a freelancer in New York City. It was a very well-spent experience for me. Besides the money I earned, I also learned InDesign and can now add that to my credentials. Now that my freelance stint is over I am back to painting and marketing myself as another freelancer. Here is another tip for you:

At the present time I am designing, producing and printing Christmas cards for a neighbor. I have been doing her cards every Christmas for the past 5 or 6 years. For all of you photographers, I'll bet you have enough photographs in your stockpile to create some personal Christmas cards for buying customers. You can advertise this very lucrative project at your nearest card shops. Merely contact the owner of the store and ask him if you could put up a small poster near his Christmas card rack and offer him a percentage. Most of them will agree to another way of making some Holiday money. This is also good for Hanukkah and other Holidays. At the very least it will bring in some Christmas money. It has for me for quite a few years. I have had to turn down offers because of lack of time. I also make my own cards for my wife and me.

I will try to add some more tips later and I hope that all of you other artists/photographers who have some tips of your own will jump right in and post them.

 

Laurie Freitag

3 Years Ago

So how does one approach a restaurant to hang their stuff? What do you say? Do you just have it on the wall or is my name next to it with a price? I'm clueless. Thanks

 

Reina Cottier

3 Years Ago

Great advice here, many thanks to all!

I have found my Facebook page has bought me the biggest return by far in the shortest space of time, (with the least amount of time and energy expended too!) .I've had at least a dozen sales in one way or another, and a book offer, with another in the pipeline from FB alone.
The way I did it was align myself with other pages that have the same type of philosophy as my art, (not all artists, a whole different bunch of pages), once Id 'liked' a whole lot of pages with this type of theme, I then used the tagging system (all in the marketing tools there) and BOOM, within a couple of months, loads of stuff happening. :-)

 

Scott Hansen

2 Years Ago

I can't tell you how helpful this has been. Harold thank you for sharing your wisdom with us. I've sold a few images from time to time, but nothing consistent. I managed to get one of my images showcased on the Smithsonian Website, and later the Smithsonian channel, but haven't really seen any sales come from it. I think like many others I am weak in marketing myself.

Thanks again Harold!

 

R U

R U

2 Years Ago

Harold, This was just the discussion I was looking for. Thank you so much for your ideas and for the contributions of others. I agree with you about art shows. I think they are stepping stones for getting your work seen and for your resume and not so much for sales. I would like other ideas. I like the brochure because I like to network and can hand my brochure out to interior designers who often purchase art for their clients. I am currently taking a marketing class for facebook that greatly expands your ability to sell your art there and at least showcase it. I have had galleries subscribe to my page but not sales yet. I am fairly new though. 1 year here at FAA. I am still developing my style. Used to be a black and White photographer. Now learning Digital. Thanks Harold for this thread. You are encouraging.

 

Jim Sauchyn

2 Years Ago

About 40 years ago I saw an ad in Rolling Stone, the magazine, someone wanted a million people to send them one dollar each. Don't know how they made out, if they're alive today they probably are making millions off the internet.
My question is, does anyone have any hard data on how advertsing on other websites like twitter, stumble, FB etc. actually translates into sales? Obviously if you can get zillions of views you're going to make sales but I feel sometimes I waste my time advertising and marketing and am just making money for the owners of the other websites like twitter, FB, Squidoo etc. It's like the gold rushes of the 19 century - it wasn't the miners for the most part who made all the money, it was more often the merchants who went there and charged the miners $20 for a loaf of bread while the miners were doing all the real work.

 

DENIS SHAH

2 Years Ago

MY DEAR HAROID THANK YOU SOO MUCH FOR SHARING YOUR IDEAS.

LOVE DENIS.

 

Harold Shull

2 Years Ago

Thank you all for your support of this thread.

Here is a website link that will give you information about most of the art shows in this country:

http://www.local.com/results.aspx?keyword=art+show&cid=1265&gclid=CP3ykJK5m68CFYbe4AodSDtTZQ

 

Jo Ann Gonzalez

2 Years Ago

Hello all, my name is Jo Ann or just Jo. Any way when I tried to get my business up and running which it did not work
I had gotten my name out there by going to a place call Vista prints.com and they have a lot of different ways to help you out,
yes you have to spen money but you will Make money buy going to them or advertise in the weekley ads, etc...

I do plan on doing what I did but now that I have a great company like AAF I feel I will get some where now, ( or I hope too).

Good luck to you all...

Jo

 

Lee Peterson

2 Years Ago

I've been posting my art in twitter and facebook, haven't really had much success. How do you talk to banks, realtors and others about hanging your art there?

 

Lee Peterson

2 Years Ago

Great dvd covers by the way.

 

Mo T

2 Years Ago

This is simply great and very helpful discussion...Thank You Guys for sharing all this :) All the Best with You art...@-@ Mo
Photography Prints

 

Harold Shull

2 Years Ago

Hiya guys,

I don't know if I mentioned this in the above posts but "The Best Marketing Tool Ever Created" is at your fingertips - the computer and all of its programs - but most importantly, the Internet. I have spoken with dozens of old-timers, like me, in the adverising field about how easy it would have been for us if we had the computer and its programs when we had gotten our first creative groans. Some said it would have cut more than half the time they spent looking for the right arena in which to spread their wings. Also it would have given them the chance to compare the industries without having to work for each and every one of them in order to find out for themselves.

You can find all and any information you need in order to market yourself. With the information posted on the internet you can market yourself as a know-it-all professional by merely searching it out on the internet. Did you know you can save hundreds of dollars being spent for resumes and cover letters by putting searches out there for the best of them and then substituting your information instead of theirs and walla, you just saved what they had spent gtting theirs done by professionals. These are just some tricks of the trade you can use to market yourself. Years ago, a very good friend of mine came over to my studio and was excited to show me his resume that he just spent $140.00 to have it composed by some professional copywriter. After he posted it on the interent i copied it and put my own information in it. It showed me whether to justify, center abold the copy for the best results. Even the fonts he used were there. When I compared mine with his, they were entirely different looking. He had a big laugh later when I told him how I saved myself $140.00. This method is also great to use for cover letters. Why should you people spend money and time learning how and what to do when all the answers are right there at your fingertips to use.

Start using your head and not your pocketbook or wallet to market yourself. Once your money runs out and you are marketing yourself just to get rent or food money the whole picture changes. Then it's no longer fun or an educational experience. It's a survival experience. It has been said many times that a gambler can't win on scared money or money he needs to live on. It just doesn't work that way. I love to play cards for money and have won and lost a lot but I never drew an inside straight when I had to...never.

 

Robin EL-Hachem

2 Years Ago

Wonderful thread to have come across! Thanks so much for the very helpful info :D

 

Harold Shull

2 Years Ago

Thank you Robin. If I helped only one struggling artist on his path to being recognized, it was well worth it. Although marketing is one of the most important tools an artist should use, it shouldn't become a financial burden. God only knows the many road blocks that an artist has to experience in his/her lifetime. It's also unfortunate that the beginning artists need to master self marketing skills and are oblivious to it's importance in their growth as a succesful artist. They spend years of their lives honing their skills and then wonder in amazement why nobody has ever heard of them. Its that same old story about the horn. I would venture to say that every successful artist was a master at marketing or knew somebody who was.

 

Dawn Clayton

2 Years Ago

Thank you Harold for all of the encouragement and the wonderful ideas. I absolutely love the door hanger idea! I have been using Facebook to show work, so I will keep that up and kudos to the t-shirt idea. I'm going to try that too. Someone mentioned Vistaprint and they are absolutely a great place for ideas and they are relatively inexpensive. They do my business cards, so maybe I will start taking advantage of some of the other items they offer.

Good luck to everyone and let's keep those ideas coming!!

 

Semmick Photo

2 Years Ago

How do I hang my work at the vet for free? I have to get printed and into a frame or on canvas which is expensive. I dont think there is such a thing as free marketing. Heck, I even had to pay for FAA to get my work displayed.

 

Anca Jugarean

2 Years Ago

Hi Harold,
Thanks for sharing all these ideas and for starting this discussion.
I love the idea of displaying art in public places. I could add that another way of making it attractive for the place that accepts to display it is to have some sort of silent auction with a starting price that covers your expense and mark-up, and let's say that you agree that... a don't know, 1/2, 1/4 or some percentage from what the sale makes above the starting price, you'll donate it to them. In some way it would be fundraising thing for them as well.

In any case, I would like to know what you think about my works, if you'd give me a + or a - on sell-ability.

Also, here's my presence on facebook: https://www.facebook.com/anca.jugarean.

I don't know how familiar you are with RedBubble... Here's my RB page:http://www.redbubble.com/people/ancajugarean.

 

Harold Shull

2 Years Ago

Thank you Dawn. Dawn, I never leave home without my business cards...never! Also, You may want to try to do your own cards, it's cheaper.

Semmick, so what's your point? It even costs to be born or die. When I said free, I meant that you can find a vet that won't charge you a dime. I found two without even trying.

Thank you Anca and I will check your art out and get back to you.

 

Sharon Mick

2 Years Ago

Thank you Harold for all your advice.

 

Agrofilms Photography

2 Years Ago

I've been on FAA for about 9 months now and only sold about 5 pieces here. Not that I'm complaining but I wish I could do better on this site. I'm a Multimedia Specialist and I work on content management websites, video productions and photography. I find it extremely difficult to market my fine art photography along with my regular work online and face to face.

I have a few questions.

1) Is it commonly standard to pay 50% of profit to gallery owners per exhibition in your area?
2) How many likes did you have on Facebook when you sold your first few pieces through FB.

Here's my FB page http://www.facebook.com/greatprints









 

This discussion is closed.