This watercolor floral still life was very influenced by my grandparent’s New England home. My Italian grandparents purchased their circa 1700’s house in the mid 1940’s in Connecticut. The center of the house was buttressed by a quarry stone chimney with a hearth on each face, upstairs and downstairs, built by Native Americans. The mantles were lined with hand carved, moveable-part curios, and there was an acquisition story to go with each treasure. The house was decorated with international sensibilities, because my immigrant grandparents collected things that spoke to their history.
Art Reveals the Artist (& the Collector)
My art reveals hints of my own stories; the figures are my family, the still life objects are familial heirlooms, etc. We paint what’s meaningful to us. Whether we render quiet genre scenes, or garish political statements, or flower-colored abstracts, they are all portals to each artist’s history, character and preferences. When you exhibit your work, folks with similar sensibilities find you and rejoice in that common ground. If exhibit attendees don’t share your affinities, they’ll move on. Knowing my rapport for quiet, contemplative scenes, would you be surprised that I wouldn’t collect a neon pink, bleeding, headless rabbit painting? Should the rabbit painter be sad, or feel rejected that our tastes don’t mesh? Absolutely not.
You Are the Model of Your Collector
Just like opposing favorite colors, spicy vs mild foods, city life vs country living…. everyone has different tastes. We bring all of our DNA and Life Experience-infused tastes with us to art shows. If you show your art, and there’s not much response to it, the only thing you can be certain of is that your people didn’t attend the exhibit. Never take that personally. It doesn’t mean your art is bad, or other folks who sold tons of work are better than you. Rather than dragging your sad self back to the studio questioning your place in the artworld, sprint to a notepad!
Look in the Mirror
Make a list of everything you love in art. Colors, subjects, styles, etc. Think hard about folks in the world who are just like you… Where do you hang out? (That’s where they hang out.) What are your favorite pastimes? (Those are their favorite pastimes too.) What style of house and home decor do you love? (They adore the same houses and styles that you love too!) People who are just like you will respond to your art. Find the places where those folks hang out, and put some marketing efforts into getting that group to your next exhibit. Build a mailing list, and fill it with folks you relate to. You’re not just looking for “collectors”. You’re looking for Your Collectors.
Those are your people. 😎😎
Two Ideas are Better than One
If you have tips or tricks for building an email list, or attracting your perfect collector to your exhibits, please share them in the comments. Their are a million ways to wear all the hats related to art marketing and exposure these days. The business end of making art isn’t easy, so we’ll all move forward faster if we help each other. N’est ce pas?
Thanks for stopping by today, and I’ll see you in the next post –
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It is unfortunate that [Degas’] execution is always so inadequate and that his taste leads him to the bizarre or ugly, rather than the graceful. He has an unfortunate weakness for pink-skirted dancers and yawning laundresses. Unhappily, Degas does not have the eye of a colorist nor always the hand of a draftsman.C. Bigot,critic from La Revue Politique et Litteraire 1876