Feeling a bit left out whilst trolling Instagram lately? All these artists are flying past 10k followers, announcing loads of shows, and you’re pretty sure they’re almost selling out of all their paintings!
THE TRUTH IS…
They probably do have that many real people following them, are getting tons of exhibition opportunities, and practically selling out of their originals.
This might be uncommon in the grand scheme of the world, but it’s pretty easy to find successful artists on social media.
And then the jealousy kicks in a bit.
You’re a nice person so you probably don’t wish those artists weren’t doing so well. It’s just that you could really use some extra money and you’re stuck in a job you hate and boy would it feel good to have the validation that you just might be a good artist.
I get it.
And so do a bunch of other artists reading this right now!
I promise I talk to artists all the time who feel like they are working pretty hard and yet can’t seem to sell but the occasional piece of art. And they can’t imagine how it could turn into a full time job with money to spare, but somehow they still let themselves dream about it – because they can see it happening to other artists, so they know it has to be possible.
And it definitely is. I’m here to tell you that you can be one of those success stories! It does take hard work, but that’s not all it takes.
ONE OF THE THINGS IT TAKES IS STARTING TO ACT LIKE YOU ALREADY HAVE THE SUCCESS.
It feels counterintuitive.
If you’re newer, you should charge less because your work must be worth less… right?
If you’re newer, you should pay your dues in the smaller galleries and doing consignment instead of wholesale (or maybe not doing any of it just yet – wait until you have the recognition to back it up)… right?
I can go on and on about the things artists think they have to wait to be worthy of or for anyone to give them an opportunity to do.
And the reality is that most of the successful artists you’re seeing claimed the role of “successful” long before they actually were.
They chose to speak about themselves and their art like a seasoned pro.
They chose to ask more established artists to collaborate with them.
They chose to create a coffee table book of their work.
They chose to ask influencers to tell their audiences about their art.
They chose to offer commissions, but only accept the best projects.
They chose to raise their prices – up, up, up!
They chose to stand confidently at a gallery opening and approach the most important people in the room to start a conversation.
LIKE THE OLD ADAGE SAYS, “DRESS FOR THE JOB YOU WANT, NOT THE JOB YOU HAVE.”
While there are hundreds of things that can make you look like a total pro, and thus catapult you to success as other people begin to treat you like one, by far my favorite is getting the media to talk about you.
BEING IN THE PRESS IS LIKE BORROWING SOMEONE ELSE’S HARD WORK.
Someone else spent years building a gigantic following for their magazine/blog/podcast/etc. And you are just swooping in and saying hi to their people. Naturally, a lot of those people are intrigued by you and then come over to your social media accounts or your website or your email list to get to know you better.
So much easier than finding new art fans one at a time, huh?
Since it’s my favorite strategy for skyrocketing an artist’s success, I created a whole program about it.
It’s called Press Bootcamp and it’s the place where artists are whipped into shape through a series of learning & homework focused on getting the media to talk about your art.
The next round of Bootcamp kicks off August 27th. It’s my most-affordable way of getting my personalized attention on your art and your business. If you’re interested, sign up below to learn more about it.
The class is very much about taking action more than learning. You’ll learn, of course, but you won’t feel like learning was where it stopped. We actually do the work together and you get my feedback every step of the way. It’s one of my most talked-about programs because the students always feel supported well beyond the what they expected so they see results much faster than with traditional self-study classes. Sign up in the box above for all the details!