Australian Fine Artist

Building an Arts Practice

In preparation for an upcoming Assessment Task today we talked about what projects we may be thinking of taking on to help build our arts practices. For this we broke into groups of about four to five making sure we had a good mix of ages.

David asked us to consider these points: the projects must be;

  1. Specific
  2. Measurable
  3. Action Oriented
  4. Realistic
  5. Have a Deadline

Our group thought of the following things that may be attractive to them to help build their presence in the community and showcase their art.

  • Build a professional Facebook page (I already have one of these which I update fairly regularly)
  • Show works in local cafes and public spaces (I already have an agreement with the local cafe)
  • Enter competitions and exhibitions advertised in art magazines (I am concentrating on local ones as these can be expensive and not local)
  • Enter art exhibitions and competitions in general (I enter about a dozen per year as of last year, that’s all I can afford)
  • Ask friends and neighbours if they’re interested in hanging your work. (I have work having in a few neighbours and relatives houses as gifts and several done as commissions)
  • Give art to family as gifts (I have also done this)
  • Create a Web Site ( I have one of these which I designed and our business built)
  • Talk to builders, contractors, architects etc about hanging in new housing estates ( I haven’t had much response with this)
  • Talk to local school about having art in their premises (I haven’t been able to get past reception at local schools to meet the decision maker)
  • Get business cards printed ( I hand these out everywhere!)
  • Set up in a local market to show drawings and to draw on site to attract viewers of your art and promote (I tried this with fairly poor results)
  • Open a dialogue with a local council or shire and their arts officers (I have recently had work through this and have been told more will come)
  • Look into “Arts’ Trails” and open studio days in the area (when my studio is finished I have this planned)
  • Find a mentor (I have a couple of casual artist mentors)
  • Find an artist to work with cooperatively ( I haven’t had time to get on to this yet, but have had own offer for possible future ventures)
  • Photograph and document all works so you have a good record of every piece you produce ( I have files and keep photos in iPhoto on the computer and in files on it)
  • Place work into internet based galleries such as Paintings I Love, Fine Art America, Put Some Colour in Your Life, Red Bubble etc (I have been in several for about two years)

We had a good chat about our art and whether we all were even considering going commercial, as a few attending only want to do art for pleasure and not profit. Being different ages also meant that some are at the beginning of their careers and others have worked for decades and may be changing careers (like me, going back to what I should have done in the first place).

It promoted a good deal of thinking and since I had to produce project plans for my management course last year within only a fortnight, having until October to complete this assessment task shouldn’t be too difficult. Before leaving today, I had already sketched out a two part plan, the first section in two parts and the second in three parts. Some segments are already underway and only need completing and others have been a goal for a while just waiting on funds. So here is the opportunity to take my practise to the next step. We will see how it goes.

Stay tuned… the next blog will hold all the details of this master plan! … also hopefully, a whiz bang assessment task with a resultant amazing grade 😉

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