So as I navigate a roller coaster path along my art journey I definitely have had to juggle with the business side of things. Not going to lie, If you want to sell your art work you need to work hard on the business front. This means although it would be amazing to spend 24/7 in the studio painting, this is not realistic. I find myself constantly working out how to juggle my time to keep creating but most importantly get my work out there.. I've not got it nailed down to a T yet but I will share some advice.
Social media is FREE
Try to harness all the good you can get from social media, use it to advertise your work, build a community and share your journey!
Local shops, galleries and fairs
Visit new places, talk to new people, find out about new galleries, artists etc. Get to know your industry and what's accessible to you right now.
family and friends
If you have good friends they will help you! get them to share your posts, talk about you, word of mouth is the best form of advertising!
paid advertisement online and paper
Having adverts in local papers and online will help target a local audience and build your brand name.
Having a website is a fundamental part of selling your work, most people are online now, so the website acts as a face to your brand! make sure it looks good!
Things to remember:
Building a business takes time
balance your work load, for example I work better having shorter, focussed stints painting in the studio and then using the rest of my time on other business related subjects.
Don't compare your business to fellow artists- we are artists for a reason, we all have our own style.
Be strict with yourself and take time out when creativity isn't flowing, but make sure you use that time effectively by doing something else, like accounts etc.
I try to spend at least once a week experimenting freely with my art to keep my creativity and inspiration up. your schedule should be realistic to you. I also think its important to schedule a time once a week to look for new ways to advertise your business, the game is forever changing, you need to try and keep up to date!
Most importantly have fun, If you don't love what you do, in my opinion it wont work! your business should be your passion and people should be able to see that!
Lets talk money:
So finance wise something I learnt fairly quickly is that materials cost money, my expenses were high when first starting, especially if your like me and like to experiment with a range of supplies, this doesn't come cheap.
Advice for starting out would be to set yourself targets. target to sell X amount per week and don't buy any more new materials until you hit that goal. Price your work fairly against how much the materials cost, your time and (consider your market and audience) - If your work is of a higher price, consider selling print versions at a lower cost to make your work widely accessible. I personally think you should be focusing 50% of your time on advertising and the other 50% on creating but this will really depend on how quick you can produce high quality beautiful art!
Lastly- QUALITY over QUANTITY
Only produce the best work possible, you wont be able to create amazing masterpieces all the time so be strict with yourself with what you try to sell. each piece of art is essentially going on display in someone's home / business forever! rather sell one amazing piece than 10 smaller half done paintings.