Category: Branding

How an Artist Can Make Money Online

Build Your Brand as an Artist

I had always understood branding, as an artist you really are your brand, that’s part of being an artist.          You’re putting yourself out there, your imagery, your style, your design.

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And as an artist, designer, it’s all about you and your vision.  So, it was kind of a really nice marriage between, business and personal imagery and passion and branding. 

Now that I’m finally finding my way to becoming an entrepreneur while balancing love for my family and love for myself (without the guilt), I’m starting to feel the superwoman in me breaking free and taking charge more than ever.

I have found the home-based business I truly want and found the right tools and people to get me through it.  I’m finally feeling that I’m in my element now.

It’s really about branding

And so it wasn’t hard for me, but I definitely understand the power of branding even more so through making videos and I learned so much from the Superwomen in terms of how you can continue to extend that brand out to things like Pinterest, and StumbleUpon, and Tumblr, all of these Instagram.

All of these platforms can contain that same brand and I think it’s really important for people to brand themselves because they’re going to remember, it’s going to stick with them a little bit stronger than your name, unless you have some really catchy name.  I mean that’s how movie stars used to do way back; they change their names to something really catchy to remember.  And now it’s really the person is the brand.

So that concept is really spot on, and branding is really important.  Now, I’ve also hired people throughout my last couple of years learning all these online stuff.  I’ve had people help me with the branding, and imagery and graphics.

For me imagery is everything.  And I understand the power of images, that is really a wonderful way to bring in interest and excitement. And all of these platforms are perfectly suited to image or imagery becoming the generating factor in people getting interested in what you’re doing.  

The diversity in the methods

And another thing I like about the whole online thing is the diversity in the methods that you can utilize.  There’s not just one way to go about it.   And when you have a retail job, it’s very specific – you show people some products, they’re coming and buying them and then that’s it.

Online you can be creative in how you are marketing , these are very simple platforms. I was looking for something that had more dynamics, and my personality was able to come through in blogging.

Sometimes it’s all about the brand and not so much about the visionary. And so flipping it to be more about me, and what I’m about, was a really kind of natural discovery for me.   I was like, wow, I can make videos and people would watch them? And be interested in what I’m doing.  Now that was really a mind blowing concept for me.

Comfortable in front of the camera

I think my personality lends itself really well in videos. And so I was able to really utilize videos.  I have so many ideas with videos, I wanted to make DIY projects, I have gardening videos.  I shoot right here at the beach where I live.  I travel; I shoot when I’m traveling.  I was doing snorkeling videos.

I use a GoPro, and many other cameras for capturing different aspects of my art. We may be shooting under the water and taking imagery into another visual level. The creativity that it’s allowing me has totally changed my life.  It turned me into a happy person, a creative dreamer again.  And it’s giving me this new outlook on business. And it’s giving me a really wonderful and just excitement about what business and my persona can come together as a brand. And I just think that the potential is unlimited.

A Happy Entrepreneur

It’s an incredibly different mindset.  In normal business, it’s all about competitions,  it’s all about who’s going to outsell who, and who’s going to undersell and all of that, and I never felt that art has a place in that kind commercial arena.

Art is not about competition, it’s about beauty and inspiration.  And to me to put a price tag on that always just give a bad taste on my mouth and that’s why I started teaching.   But teaching, first of all, pays terribly, and second of all it has a huge burnout factor.   You cannot leave your job at school. You have to bring it home.

The burn-out factor in teaching

It’s constant, constant, constant.  I was teaching 12 classes a week.  I did get a real teaching job as an art teacher for a couple of years and I was not just the art teacher, I had to do newsletters, I have to watch the play yard when they’re on recess.  And I’m in charge of this and that and the other things.  And then on top of that, I had to run my classes, and prep for them.  There were not just creative teaching moment; it was this constant chore of having a job.

Probably not the ideal employee!

And I realized early on that I’m a terrible employee!  I want to be in charge.  I’m that kind of person. I love teaching because in the classroom, you’re in charge. You can tell 15-20 people what to do, and they will going to listen to you, and not everybody can do that. And not everybody can do that, it wasn’t easy for everybody, and I find it very easy.  I could command an audience.  When I get out of the classroom I have all these pressures on me and I just never really liked that part of it.

The dilemma continues

So, again it was this good and bad aspect of business and I just did not like it.  And I want to be my own boss, but again finding the right way to be your own boss.  You see people all the time losing their companies, investing hundreds and thousands of dollars in a company and it’s still not working!  And what is the formula?  It’s very tricky and there’s so many different ways to be successful that I think having the creativity to be able to do it and many different ways but for everything to lead into the same thing is really an ingenious plan.

So that by the end of the day, you may have 10 or 15 things happening online at the same time, and it’s just cooking, it’s just grooving along.  And you are at the helm of it all.  So if you like being in charge, it’s a great way to be in-charge but not have to have the pressure of employees and the bottom line.

A network of people helping one another

We want to be successful but sometimes we just don’t know how to do it. And there’s so much competition out there, and this is a place where there is no competition, it’s only support, it’s only there for people to be lifted up.  And if you need technical help, where there to help you.  If you’re having a bad day, we’re there to lift you up. So, it’s this wonderful combination of sisterhood that’s been empowering people and we’re over a thousand women strong.

What is the dream:To become a entrepreneur that will empower artists

So my dream is to be able to help artists understand that there’s a way for them to share their vision with the world without selling out.  And I think that happens to a lot of artists, they have to sell out, they really have to bite the bullet, become very commercialize in order to be successful.

I don’t think you have to be commercial, you just have to be yourself.  I think artists are really looking for that. I’m looking to empower artists, artisans and crafts people, women, and really show them that there’s a way to be true to yourself and not sacrifice your family life, your dream and really be true to who you are.  And I’m really excited about that.


 

Art Marketing for the Visual Artist

What Does It Mean To Be An Online Artist

marketing for artistsI have always been a visual artist.  And although it took a back seat when I became a teacher and then a mom, changing my self-image eventually helped me get back on track. Over the past 5 years, I have turned myself into an online-entrepreneur-blogger and eco-advocate and my role as a visual artist has come full circle. I finally feel like I discovered a place to express myself and my story to the world and set it up as a home based business. But along with this came the importance of art marketing.

I now have the liberty to embrace my creativity and my passion and create a business around it.  Art marketing is an important aspect of my own online business. I’m sending back to the universe what I’ve learned by sharing my stories, experiences and life passions, hoping I can influence other creatives, to build an online presence through a blog.

One of my dreams is to be able to help the artist community to share their visions to the world, without ‘selling out’, hence the importance of marketing for artist.

Lisa Blue Marble

 Why art marketing is a big deal

As artists, we create art works – marketing our art is the opposite of what art is for us, it can feel exploitive.  For creative people, art is an innate thing, it comes naturally, but not the art marketing aspect of it, this is a challenge.

Being the artists that we are, have to keep our, creative channels open, we need to be able to always be creative in every aspect of our lives – to express ourselves, our emotions, our vision. Getting all bogged down by technical platforms and widgets can often feel constrictive and frustrating, but I discovered it is really not that hard at all. Upload an image here and add a little content there and you’ve got a blog.

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As artists, we create, we even present our creations, but we don’t  necessarily know how to share it with the world.  I have an excellent art education from Rhode Island School of Design (BFA) and San Jose State University (MFA), and an education on how to teach art,  but I lacked the business know-how to sell myself confidently as an artist. No matter how talented I was told I was, or how much people liked my work, there was often the question, well what do I do with that talent now? 

How can art marketing play a role in my online business ?

I was pretty discouraged seeing other artists biting the bullet just to put their artworks out there.  It’s a common problem among artists. Even with massive talent, you’ll rely on luck or a good P.R. manager as to who sees or who buys your artwork or take a chance and give 50% to 60% to studio galleries. Talented artists everywhere are in competition with each other for attention in the art world. This is something I shied away from and thus went into teaching.

Marketing for artists can be a challenge. Putting ourselves out there to share our visions to the world does not always come as easy as it seems. In the art world there is a Who’s Who list of up-and-comers and talented creators in their own right, looking to have their own perspectives seen. I tried that scene for a little while, and found that teaching better served my soul, I wanted to inspire young creative minds and not constantly be looking for recognition. I found that the proud career moments for me were little things like when a student shows their parents what they created and feels good about seeing a piece they made displayed on the walls of the school for all to see.

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I turned the corner on that career, and became an ART MOM

Eventually I had to leave the teaching world behind for the domestic bliss of helping guide my own children’s hopes and dreams for their vision and support their art education. I was always the kind of parent who put my kids first, and made sure my kids attended one of the only public, arts-based curriculum, elementary schools in San Francisco, who utilized the parents as teachers. So for over a decade I had found a place within a community that fully embraced art education and was present in my children’s classes weekly. I felt that I had contributed greatly to the artistic interests of the students and the whole community by creating permanent works with students on the school campus and facilitating large scale class projects for the school’s Annual live auctions.

But then that also ended, my kids went on to Middle school and High school. No more Art Mom, no more art parent involvement. I was on my own, and I was definitely looking for a platform to glide my vision into. It was time to return to my center, my own creative spirit was begging to come out of hiding. But there came a point when I shifted. I was a super duper art mom, but I was not really following my true path as an artist. I started to feel a bit grumpy and sad, I lamented for time in a studio, for time exploring my own ideas and materials.

For years and years I had been funneling so much energy into the family and being the best parent to my kids that I had lost my artistic identity, and as a result I felt a deep, underlying unhappiness.

I focused all my creative energies into my home, my kids, cooking, cleaning, and organizing all aspects of our lives; financial, medical, travel and everything else. I was denying my true self, and felt tired and ready to tap back into my creative talents.

I was seeking a way to use my creativity for education and also to 

inspire change in myself and others

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I wanted my business and my brand to be an extension of me

I set to the task of learning a lot about marketing for artists, how to set up a blog, how to use social media, and even found personal development to be an amazing advantage in my new career. Seeking inner balance and outer balance at the same time. All of these things had led me to the realization that as an artist, I’m also an entrepreneur, and that I was my own product.

I hope to share the importance of art marketing along with the skills learned along the way; as an artist, an art teacher, an art parent, and now, an art blogger-entrepreneur.

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