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Art Marketing Ideas and Straight Talk about Selling Art, Marketing, Inspiration & Fine Living




Seth Godin's Linchpin - Enhancing or Diminishing the Word Artist?

by Clint Watson on 1/26/2010 10:46:02 AM

The blogosphere is all buzzing about the release of Seth Godin's new book, Linchpin: Are You Indispensable? I admit that I have not read the book yet, and that I do plan to as soon as I can get a copy since I've always found Seth's work to be enlightening and insightful....Seth has the authority and insight to redefine words in this brave new world, and this time he seems to be redefining the word artist to include just about everyone...If I my insurance broker, my coffee shop waitress, and my mechanic are all now artists, then what do I call you as someone who creates paintings, sculpture, fiber art, or photography? Do I have to go around now, always saying you're a "visual artist?" [...]

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Why do You Create?

by Clint Watson on 1/11/2010 4:23:07 PM

There’s a common thread among artists who succeed. They are passionate about what they do and, they don’t want to do anything else. In some cases, they don’t even feel they can do anything else...If you’re passionate about your art, then this message is for you. [...]

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I am the Contrarian Art Marketer

by Clint Watson on 1/8/2010 12:01:32 PM

The Echo Chamber tells artists that SEO is extremely important, but I say it's not all that important. The Echo Chamber says that you need to develop a USP, but I say you are already developing a Wordless USP. The Echo Chamber says that having a really professional looking portfolio and image is important, but I say chill out - that's not all that important either. The Echo Chamber goes crazy over Facebook, but I'm not so sure. The Echo Chamber currently loves Twitter, but I questioned that too (and have sort of had to eat crow on that one). The Echo Chamber thinks a gallery must be in a great high-traffic location, but I used to sell tons of art from a location that had zero walk-in traffic. [...]

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The Wordless USP

by Clint Watson on 1/6/2010 9:58:03 PM

Yes, you need to attract your unique audience, your Collector Clan. But you don't do it by coming up with a catchy slogan and then trying to find those people that "match" your slogan. You do it by honing your own unique style, sharing your art and letting (and helping) those people find you...So if you're wracking your brain for a tagline, or being told you need to spend time or money on doing that, then relax and get back to what being an artist is all about. I give you permission to go to your easel and develop your wordless USP. [...]

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You Are the Diamond Cutter

by Clint Watson on 12/30/2009 2:02:43 PM

the good news is that if you want to change the world with your art, are willing to be honest with yourself about the current quality of your work, are disciplined and determined to continually improve your work, and most importantly, have that insatiable hunger to create . . . . then it is only a matter of time until you succeed... [...]

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The Only Two Things Artists Have to Master

by Clint Watson on 12/17/2009 12:05:35 PM

There are only two things you need to master to be a successful artist...1 - Creating remarkably good art. 2-Finding the people who love your art and sharing it with them...Unfortunately, many people spend their entire careers learning to be great at either the first thing or the second thing... [...]

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Apologies and an Explanation

by Clint Watson on 11/4/2009 12:02:15 PM

It looks like I owe the fine folks over at and the author Daniel Tardent some apologies....and an explanation. [...]

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Make Amazing Art, Be Authentic, Tell Your Stories and the Art Will Sell

by Clint Watson on 10/30/2009 9:33:19 AM

Back when I owned an art gallery and spent most of my time selling art, I stumbled upon a little "secret" I'll let you in on - I didn't really "sell" art, at least not in the way we think of a car salesperson "selling" you a car. The truth is, I spent most of my time being a storyteller...Here, let me illustrate what I mean, here were some of my stories that tended to "sell" artwork.. [...]

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Finding Balance in an Otherwise Lopsided World

by Daniel J. Keys on 9/3/2009 10:22:35 AM

Going over some of the recent articles written by various FAV contributors (myself included) you might get the impression that there’s a bit of inconsistency amongst us: Some give advice that often seems to contradict other’s instructions; their instructions go against things you may have been taught were right, by someone else; and another person’s teachings may disregard all others' opinions, including yours, still. [...]

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Maybe You Should Raise Your Prices

by Keith Bond on 8/7/2009 12:04:55 PM

An artist friend of mine shared with me just the other day how he is surviving the economic down turn. Before I share what he is doing now, I should give you a tiny bit of background on him. His work is well known and sells for a fair amount of money. A few years ago, his annual sales approached the one million dollar mark. During that time, almost all of his sales came from only 2 galleries. [...]

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A Most Amazing Frame Experience

by Clint Watson on 7/31/2009 11:00:14 AM

I recently framed two paintings from start to finish in less than 5 minutes (and I had to take one out of an old frame)...I can't tell you how much of a relief it was to have the frames ready-to-go with every little detail thought of. Back in my gallery days, I never had to worry about such things because I had all the wire and frame hardware I needed, right at my fingertips. But now, as a "regular" art buyer, I don't have any of that. If anything was missing from the wire to the attachment hardware, I would have had to stop, drive to a frame shop or to home depot to purchase hardware. It wouldn't have been the end of the world, but it would have been a big pain...Thank You, Art Ready Frames, for making the process of getting my art collection hung enjoyable and easy. I'll be calling you again soon, I've got some more paintings that need re-framing . . . . [...]

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Thoughts on How to Price Art

by Clint Watson on 7/29/2009 8:35:40 AM

It was extremely rare that I ever saw a selling artist whose prices were equal on a square inch basis when comparing large and small pieces. Larger paintings are almost always less per square inch than small ones. [...]

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Dealing with Jealousy - Part 1

by Lori Woodward Simons on 7/28/2009 11:03:32 AM

Envy, being green - whatever you want to call it - jealousy happens. Well, it happens to me...When I analyze why I feel jealous, it comes down to feeling like I'll be forgotten, left out in the cold and eventually die. Sounds like I'm going overboard with a small, silly emotion, eh? However, jealous feelings lead to fear because they are similar to wondering if we'll survive. In my early adult life, I was jealous when my boyfriend paid more attention to other girls than me. (prettier girls, mind you). Because he was showing preference to another person, I wondered if I would lose him to that girl and be forever abandoned and alone. In a couple of cases, this fear was based in truth; I was indeed left behind. However, I didn't die, and found someone else who was better. [...]

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Artists And Attitudes

by Stapleton Kearns on 7/21/2009 1:44:23 PM

It's hard keeping a reasonable attitude about your work. I have heard it said that when you look in the mirror, you see what you think of yourself, but... when you look at your paintings you are not looking in a mirror. The painting is something you have made, it's a thing. You are you, and not your painting. You'll need to keep yourself separate from your work if you want to handle stiff critiques. If you can separate yourself from your painting well enough to listen to a critique, without thinking it is a critique of you, that will help. [...]

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Nurturing Right Connections

by Daniel J. Keys on 6/17/2009 12:05:02 PM

So, a friend of mine finds a strange looking egg while taking one of his daily walks not long ago. After viewing the egg down at his feet - and wondering how it escaped it's nest and landed right in the middle of the trail he frequented - he came to the conclusion that it was an abandoned duck egg; and of course being the animal lover that he is, decided to make an attempt at hatching the egg by placing it in a nest located in one of the many chicken coops that sit on his vast property. [...]

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Building Relationships with Your Collectors

by Keith Bond on 6/1/2009 1:55:22 PM

There has been a lot of discussion lately about the importance of communication in marketing your art. I believe that this is critical, but also believe that it can go far beyond that. To me it is about building relationships. And as anyone who is married knows, relationships cannot succeed without communication. However, communication often occurs with no thought to strengthening relationships. And in some sad cases, communication even destroys relationships. Use your art and communication to build lasting relationships. [...]

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Demonstrations and Lectures

by Keith Bond on 5/20/2009 10:27:21 AM

People are fascinated by what we artists do. They are curious and interested in knowing how we create our artwork. They are intrigued by our way of viewing and interpreting the world. They want to get inside our heads. [...]

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Keep on Keeping On

by Lori Woodward Simons on 5/14/2009 10:59:34 AM

I've noticed a disturbing trend among some of my artist friends recently. When their gallery sales seem sluggish for a month, some lose interest in painting, and find excuses to avoid the studio. However, when their gallery calls and announces a sale, suddenly these same artists get excited about painting again. [...]

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An Upstream Journey

by Keith Bond on 5/12/2009 8:26:48 AM

In this time of uncertainty, there are many challenging obstacles. What you do during this time is critical. Even if you must slow your pace, you must never take your oars out of the water. You must keep creating; you must continue marketing. It is imperative that collectors continue to see your work. If they don't see you, they will see those artists who are continuing to toil upstream. [...]

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Realistic Pricing Practices

by Trent Gudmundsen on 4/30/2009 10:44:48 AM

It's a hard thing to price your work correctly—probably one of the most difficult parts of the whole marketing process. But with a basic knowledge of the principle of supply and demand, you can price your work like a good businessperson and greatly improve your chances of “making it” as an artist. [...]

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Diversifying Marketing Strategies

by Lori Woodward Simons on 4/29/2009 8:51:55 AM

Over the past decade, I've had the pleasure of working with several art marketing experts, and one thing that has become clear to me: Many folks who have the means to buy original artwork, have never thought of doing so. [...]

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Finding Your True Motivation

by Lori Woodward Simons on 4/22/2009 8:10:53 AM

Let's just suppose for a moment that you have been granted to make a million dollars next year working at whatever you want. Now there are a couple of strings attached to this statement: One is that you would have to work hard at it, and two - it could only be one thing. Now, please don't pick the question apart -- it's hypothetical, and I have a good reason for presenting it -- to help you discover what is your true motivation for making the artwork that you do. [...]

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Quotable Quotes and Nuggets of Wisdom

by Keith Bond on 4/15/2009 10:05:26 AM

Over the years, I have collected quotes and words of wisdom about art. Many artists have given us a great gift by sharing their insights. Below is a mere random sampling of some of my favorite quotable quotes and pearls of advice. There are far too many to include in one article. [...]

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Creating Life

by Keith Bond on 4/8/2009 9:28:01 AM

Art can be moving and powerful. It is wonderfully magical. But art is also elusive. So, what is art anyway? To truly grasp what art is would be impossible in one lifetime. It is far too complex. Even more difficult is finding the words to express what our hearts and minds are trying to comprehend. So in our attempts to speak of art, we use words and phrases, metaphors and analogies to try to make sense of it all. We speak of the spirit of art. We speak of creating a feeling or capturing the essence of our subject. We talk of works of art that have life. Yet they don't breathe or talk or feel - do they? [...]

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New Venues to Sell Your Art

by Lori Woodward Simons on 4/7/2009 12:15:11 PM

When tough economic times hit, commercial galleries are often the first ones to feel the heat. . .I'm mentioning this because it seems that many artists still seem desperate to get into a gallery... as sort of a credential. When times are tough, some collectors may choose to buy directly from artists or at other art venues where the prices may be lower. [...]

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How to Avoid Online Artist Predators

by Clint Watson on 4/1/2009 10:38:50 AM

We've seen an increase in the number of websites and art "services" that target artists, promise the moon, but deliver little in the way of real services or value...we don't want to see anyone get "taken" or even waste money, so, in this article, we explore some things you can do if you want to "check out" an online service before you commit your hard-earned dollars [...]

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Knowledge is Key

by Keith Bond on 3/18/2009 9:30:04 AM

While in college art classes, there was a student who had the attitude that the fundamental ‘rules’ of art were a hindrance and should be broken or even avoided. He would often cite well known artists who broke away from traditional painting and did things their own way. What he failed to acknowledge or understand is that to successfully break the rules, you must first have a solid understanding of the rules. The better you understands the fundamentals, the better you will know when and how to successfully deviate from them to support your expression. Some of you may disagree with me. Please read on and reserve judgment until after I have presented my case. If you still disagree just remember - I’m right and you’re wrong! :) [...]

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Getting Out of a Rut Takes Time and Effort

by Keith Bond on 2/23/2009 2:35:12 PM

This Post is by Keith Bond, Regular contributing writer for FineArtViews.  Find out how you can be a guest author I would like to share a few of my thoughts on the topic that Lori Woodward Simons wrote about a week or two ago.  In her newsletter "Choose Your Rut Carefully", she cautions us to paint what we love, because our chosen style or subject matter may become a rut as clients come to expect that from us.  While I agree with most of what she said, I also believe that evolution of an artist is [...]

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Practicing Quiet Confidence

by Lori Woodward on 2/19/2009 12:44:52 PM

...I suspect that it's human nature to worry about our actions, words and abilities from time to time. However, over the years, I have learned the art of displaying an attitude of quiet confidence – especially while showing my artwork to collectors [...]

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Artistic Maturity Takes Time (and Patience)

by Keith Bond on 2/17/2009 9:24:41 PM

This Post is by Keith Bond, Regular contributing writer for FineArtViews.  Find out how you can be a guest author In his book, Capturing Light in Oils, the late (and great) artist, Paul Strisik wrote: Painters mature in a slow and natural way. . . .  It may take ten years to develop your skills.  But nothing is lost, for you've still lived all those years.  The painting you do five years from now can only be done five years from now.  You can't rush it, and it can't be done tomorrow. When I first read this several years [...]

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Choose Your Rut Carefully

by Lori Woodward Simons on 2/11/2009 3:27:42 PM

This Post is by Lori Woodward Simons, Regular contributing writer for FineArtViews.  Find out how you can be a guest author. My husband and I have a cabin in the back woods of New Hampshire. It's located on a dirt road – which is just fine most of the year, except in what New Englanders call “mud season”. When the ice melts, it breaks up the dirt and turns the road surface into foot-deep soft, gooey slither. As trucks and cars run through the muddy surface, they create ruts. Some of these ruts can go on for a hundred yards, and if [...]

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The Jury Game

by Keith Bond on 2/9/2009 3:04:21 PM
1 Comment

This Post is by Keith Bond, Regular contributing writer for FineArtViews.  Find out how you can be a guest author Juried art shows are plagued by inherent flaws. As long as juries exist and as long as awards are given, this inherent dilemma will continue to have a negative impact on art. Despite his or her best intentions, the juror brings preconceived ideas or expectations. His or her opinions, likes, sensitivities, knowledge, etc. prejudice the decision. Consider the French impressionists who we honor and emulate today. In their day they were dismissed and belittled by the juries. The [...]

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Interview with Clark Hulings - Master Painter

by Lori Woodward Simons on 2/6/2009 1:25:39 PM
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This Post is by Lori Woodward Simons, Regular contributing writer for FineArtViews.  Find out how you can be a guest author.   The Spanish Shawl by Clark Hulings [...]

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Abandoning Art Magazine Advertising Platform...For Now

by Clint Watson on 2/4/2009 7:46:29 AM

Hmmm, I may change my mind on this, but I think I'm abandoning art magazine least as far as trying to partner with magazines to help our clients by developing an easy online platform to place ads and save money. I read that Google has abandoned it's effort to bring print advertising into their wildly successful advertising network.  And it got me to thinking about my own attempts to integrate print advertising into the online tools we offer artists to promote themselves. I had, for years, thought it would be really cool to have an online platform for our artists to place [...]

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Art Marketing is Conversations

by Clint Watson on 1/21/2009 1:29:06 PM

Today's Post is by Clint Watson,  founder of FineArtViews. Follow Clint on Twitter. Since writing about Art Marketing for Artists Who Want to Change the World, I've had some more thoughts about art marketing:  Art marketing is conversations.  Ignore your friendly magazine salesperson and/or marketing "guru" who tells you marketing is all about "branding:"  "branding" is for sissies, branding is dead - MARKETING. IS. CONVERSATIONS. (Hint:  If you're having conversations, you'll "automatically" develop a "brand").   Conversations are going to happen with or without your participation.  There's an old saying in advertising, "Tell your story, or someone else will tell it for [...]

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Learning to See

by Daniel J. Keys on 1/9/2009 11:42:54 AM
1 Comment

Today's Guest Post is by artist Daniel J. Keys.  Find out how you can be a guest author. As artists, it is essential that we constantly be expanding our minds, especially where our creative skills are concerned. Whether you're already an accomplished painter, or just beginning on your path to artistic excellence, there is always more to learn and higher levels of perfection to aim for. Study good art Our aim should be to grow and improve, and there are several ways of doing this. One important method is often underestimated, and therefore overlooked: Studying good art. By "good art", I mean [...]

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by Elayne Kuehler on 11/24/2008 12:14:17 PM

Today's guest author is artist, Elayne Kuehler.  This article has been edited and published with the author's permission. Find out how you can become a guest author. Even though we artists pour our life blood into our artwork and strive constantly to improve the quality of our work, often public response may not live up to what we hope for. We produce wonderful work, put a frame around it and hang it up for the world to see and then wait. We often have to wait a long time before we're rewarded for a job well done. Being paid for our art [...]

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Clint's Must-Read Articles for Artists, June 1-7

by Clint Watson on 6/9/2008 2:38:37 PM
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Dear artists, Here are some great articles we've found on the internet over the past week that are directly applicable to helping you with art, marketing, inspiration and fine living: Josh McDowell tries to explain what beauty is....and why it's not in the eye of the beholder: "We are hard-pressed to explain why encounters with beauty affect us so profoundly. What is it about a song, a snow-capped mountain, or a certain face that so grips our hearts and thrills our souls? Despite the high place we give beauty in our lives, our attempts to define it fall short. . . ." (Read Original >>) Rick Strahl explains [...]

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Clint's Must-Read Articles for Artists, May 11-17

by Clint Watson on 5/19/2008 7:52:38 AM
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Dear artists, Here are some great articles we've found on the internet over the past week that are directly applicable to helping you with art, marketing, inspiration and fine living: Lori Woodward Simons Explains that There Are No Shortcuts to Great Painting: "You see, as I try desperately to paint gorgeous, final pieces from start to finish, I inevitably fall on my face about half way through the process. Not because I’m such a crummy painter, but because my mind’s image of what should happen on the canvas and what ends up being there are two very different things. . . ." (Read Original >>) Empty Easel shares [...]

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Clint's Must-Read Articles for Artists, April 20-26

by Clint Watson on 4/28/2008 2:49:04 PM
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Dear artists, Here are some great articles we've found on the internet over the past week that are directly applicable to helping you with art, marketing, inspiration and fine living: Dick Harrison's 10 Commandments for Selling What You Create: 1. YOU CAN’T SELL IT IF YOU DON’T SHOW IT 2. The most effective way to show and sell your art is almost always in person with the art in hand. If you show and sell your own work, you deserve 100% of the profit. If you ask others to help you sell your art, they must be fairly compensated for their knowledge, time, effort and expenses. (Read Original [...]

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