I knew I'd learn a lot in my first few months as a full-time artist, but MAN... I had no idea how much I'd learn.
|Homework. (All photos by Lisa Myers Bulmash)|
I'm still absorbing an ocean of information and business practices from the EDGE professional development program for visual artists. And like most educational experiences, you learn nearly as much outside of class as you do inside class.
|Fellow EDGE grad Lorri Falterman presents her art to the public|
To keep you from drowning in information if I told you everything I've learned in the past six weeks of professional development, I've cut it down for you.
Make more art:
Yes, you also have to promote your work. But once you get into that group show or art fair, you'll need something to show/sell. Bonus: remember how great making stuff feels?
Work your network:
Through one person in my artist network -- Alicia Harvey...
|Painter Alicia Harvey and me, after my EDGE Grand Finale talk|
I met artist Vikram Madan
, who's exhibited his gleeful, colorful paintings all around the Seattle metro area. What a great gift to have a friend like him, who likely knows of a gallery that aligns with my own art!
Don't devalue your work:
|Vikram Madan presents his work at the Grand Finale|
Paradoxically, pricing too low makes your art look less valuable. Look around at your competition's prices. You may have to move the price around a bit before others realize what a gem they've found in your shop/gallery.
Wouldn't it be horrible if you packed all your original artwork carefully... and then let everything slide around in the back of the car? Use the bungee cords. They are your friends.
Write it off:
|Bungee cords and a hand truck help you save your strength|
for important things: more art-making.
(This one's my favorite.) If you're a professional artist, you can write off that museum membership.
And the framing costs for your two-dimensional pieces. And a trip to take photos for a new body of work. The trip to Tahiti to follow in Gauguin's footsteps, though... you better keep every last receipt to prove the trip is art-related.
So what did you learn during summer vacation, class? Tell me in the comments, or on Facebook.