This guest post is written by Brandi Dice, a self-taught, local artist. She specializes in acrylics and mixed media. Look for one of her works of art on the cover of the 2010-2011 Downtown Spartanburg Walking Map.
I would like to thank Kari Jackson for asking me to blog about the Art Biz event on Sunday. I’m not a “blogger” but am slowly catching up with the times. So, I didn’t think twice about telling her yes, and knew this would be a wonderful opportunity to gain knowledge in the world of art and business. I learned of this event through a good friend, Isabel Forbes, who also told me about Alyson’s website/newsletter. When she informed me of this event, I knew it was something I didn’t want to miss.
Alyson came out of the gates hitting on key points, which was something I found to be very refreshing. There have been other workshops that talked about this and that and basically just beat around the bush. Alyson was right on, starting out with the top 8 excuses artists make…and yes, I use some of them. For example, “There aren’t enough hours in the day.” I am always feeling the crunch and when it comes to scratching something off the list; it’s usually painting. The more I listened to her talk the more I found myself saying…”wow, she’s right.” Every artist could benefit from her newsletters and her blog posts. They are filled with valuable information for every type of artist.
A couple of things I wrote down during the event that I felt really stood out were: building relationships and keeping in touch with people. These are so true. The more people you talk to about art, the more they can talk to others and so on and so on, …and, write those emails, postcards, get your mailing list in order and use it. Communcation is key! Take 100% responsibility for your art and your art career.
She talked about 6 key principals of self promotion in her book called I’d Rather be in the Studio. I am not going to give you the whole book–maybe you should read it for yourself. I didn’t hesitate to grab a copy while at the event. It is packed full of information that is vital to a successful art career.
As for my self-promotion, it has been a long road. Moving to Spartanburg, SC, from Michigan in 2003 was not only a big change in scenery but a whole new group of people in my life. I used more word of mouth advertising when I was first out in the public with my artwork, sometimes taking a piece into work to show people. They would talk to one another about it and then share with friends. In 2004 I had a few pieces on display in a gallery in Aiken and then in 2005 was lucky enough to grab some attention in Spartanburg.
A lot has changed since those days. Still using ‘good old word of mouth,’ now a little help from the internet works well. A few years ago I built a website, www.BrandiDice.com, which has a few different pages for my paintings and photography, upcoming events, web store and blog. People can also find me on Facebook. I can be found around downtown at different local events like Creative Taste of Spartanburg, HUB-BUB’s Art Mart, BYOA, and others. It’s important for me to give back to the community as much as possible–donating artwork to different fund raisers is not only a great way to help out, but also great exposure. Who knows, maybe we will see your artwork out and about soon.