Daddy's Christmas Angel

Friday, September 21, 2012

Making a Business of Art Works for Writing As Well

PRAC features local entertainment during monthly art openings --MMSikes

Putting on your business hat is too often uncomfortable for both artists and writers.

It shouldn't be.

"Right brain people can train their left brains to take over when necessary," according to Marc Wilson.

A retail and restaurant industry consultant, Wilson presented his seminar, "Art as a Business" to an audience of about 50 artists at  Petersburg Regional Arts Center. He works with small businesses all over the country, including artists at the Torpedo Factory in Alexandria, Virginia.

Listening to Wilson speak, I was struck with the close similarities between his advice for artists and talks I have heard and given for writers about the use of social media for promotion.  He even talked about elevator pitches for artists who should have a five-word tag line planned to tell about their work. I knew about elevator pitches for authors but had never thought about using them for my paintings.

Here is one thing Wilson said that surprised me. "One peer recommendation is worth 200 TV ads." Is that possible? It's not the media, but the reviews of friends and relatives that sell your work, according to this veteran consultant.

For the artist's studio, he recommends "curb appeal" with good lighting, focusing on the work and not diffused all over the place. He also suggests placing work with similar colors in groups together. Actually, he is promoting good design for the look of your studio. Branding for you and for your work. Certainly, that's a good idea for book covers as well as for studio designs.

The business needs of artists and writers are similar in many ways. I'll be writing more on this subject during the next several weeks. I would love to hear some of your thoughts about good and productive business practices.

I was pleased that Petersburg Regional Arts Center promoted this seminar. PRAC opened in 2003, moving from Richmond where it began in 1999 as Shockoe Bottom Arts Center. The Center, one of the largest in Virginia, houses 85 artist studios. PRAC will be the site of the 2012 National Juried All Media Exhibition from October 12 to November 3.

Mary Montague Sikes


Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

The business side isn't fun, but thank God for peer recommendations!

Monti said...

Alex, you are the perfect example of social media working to promote. Thanks for stopping by.

Ink in the Book said...

Peer Recommendations are one of the best working media promotions!
Thanks for sharing this blog post. I enjoyed reading it:)

Monti said...

Thanks for commenting on my blog, Talynn. I keep learning and getting new surprises!

Lorna Collins - said...

Interesting information. Thanks.

Monti said...

Thanks for visiting, Lorna.