While I talk a lot about internet-based techniques for building your art business, this time I want to talk about an old school technique for marketing in person.
HANDING OUT A PAGE DESCRIBING A PIECE OF ART IN DETAIL CAN MAKE A BIGGER IMPACT THAN A BUSINESS CARD, WHICH OFTEN GETS STOWED AND FORGOTTEN.
I’ve seen people calling these different things, but the term Portfolio Page has always made sense to me, so I’ll stick with that.
You can bring portfolio pages with you to events like exhibitions, trade shows, or art fairs. And you can keep some at hand in your studio for visitors. But I find them even more effective for galleries who haven’t caught up with the times. Any gallery who doesn’t have an online submission process (or sometimes even a website!) would be a good candidate for receiving a portfolio page from you as a way to connect with them without bothering them too much if they happen to be busy when you come by.
WHAT DOES IT LOOK LIKE?
The most important things to have on a portfolio page are your name, the size and medium, and your contact info – along with an image of the work.
Those are the absolute essentials.
But the more information the better.
I like to make them similar to my favorite way of writing a product page on your website. So I think it’s best to also include the title, the price, the year you finished the piece, a description of the work, and its availability.
If it’s a reproduction, make note of that and include a SKU or some sort of identifying number. It will make you look extra professional and can be helpful for retailers who may want to order wholesale from the portfolio page (not the most common way of connecting with retailers, but you never know).
So a thorough portfolio page might look like this:
*The photograph is from NASA. The information is just for purposes of example and entirely made up.
HOW DO YOU MAKE A PORTFOLIO PAGE?
You can make something like this in InDesign (my favorite!) or you may be able to get crafty in Canva or Word to MacGyver one. But luckily, Artwork Archive can create these for you auto-magically. It’s my favorite inventory tracker for artists because it’s so comprehensive. If you’re already putting all the information for your pieces into your Archive then it’s a one-click thing, print and done. That makes it super easy!
While I don’t think you need to have a portfolio page ready for every piece of art you have, it’s nice to have a few around for larger works that may take longer to sell. And if you do get set up in Artwork Archive, they’re at your fingertips anyway.
Have you ever handed out information to a potential collector or curator like this, or even a full portfolio, before? I’d love to hear in the comments about your experience using this analog technique in our very digital world.