…….This is just me musing out loud…..
….. every so often I have time to sit back and have a think about what I want, and how I’m going to get it. And if its a small thing I usually know exactly how I’m going to get it, and I go out and do just that. But, if its a big thing, how do you get it? Especially when you’re not exactly sure what “it” is! MMmmmm…..
As an artist you have to decide what sort of artist you are – whether you’re the sort that sits at home and just paints pictures for yourself, copying them from photos in magazines and just putting them under the bed afterwards to collect dust. I’m way past being that sort of artist. Or whether you’re the sort who goes out and learns more about art and painting and improves on your art, learns new techniques, finds local places to exhibit and sells small paintings very periodically for small amounts of money. I’m past being that sort of artist. Or whether you’re the sort to decide you want to get out there (wherever that is!) and push your art more, and get more people interested in you, sell your work for higher prices and make a good living from it. And it’s very difficult for any artist to do – all the artists I know have to subsidise selling their art by either teaching art to bring in a regular income, or having a “day job” that pays the bills and they do their art around it. So, if you’re that sort of artist (and I know that I am) how do you do it? How do you achieve that goal? As far as I can see it’s by promoting your art the best you can. And maybe its by going to an established gallery and getting them to hang your paintings. I’ve tried to a degree with little success. Galleries won’t accept your work if you don’t do the sort of work they’re known for. If you’re a figure painter there’s no point in going to gallery known for landscapes. If you’re a traditional watercolourist, there’s no point in going to a modern art gallery. And also they won’t accept you if you’re not a “known” name. But how do you get to be “known” if they won’t take your paintings? I’ve had problems in the past trying to get into a gallery, as my artwork doesn’t “fit” what they do, as its neither traditional or contemporary. And also, there’s the problem of the amount the galleries want for selling an artist’s work. I’ve heard recently of an artist who isn’t as good as me, selling his artwork in a London gallery and the paintings selling for Â£2,000 but the artist will only get Â£300 when the gallery have taken their cut of the sale. And I want a higher cut if I’ve done all the hard work, like painting it! So, galleries can be useful to sell and promote, and I can see the value of them, but if I can do it without them, I’d like to try, even if it is going to be a slower process to get my name known, doing it myself.
I suppose I could just drift along, waiting for things to happen, but that’s not going to achieve much is it? Occasionally someone will contact me out of the blue wanting to buy a painting, and maybe that’ll happen more and more as I get my name more well known. The more I paint, the more paintings will go out into the world, the more people will see them and contact me. So, do I spend my time promoting my work? Or painting? I want to paint. If I was to shut myself away for a year, I might just be able to do all the paintings that I’ve got in my mind, ready to paint. But I need to promote as well.
And maybe the answer is also to get prints made of my work, cos that is where the money is made for an artist, rather than the originals.
And all of this is why I’m not sunbathing. The sun is glorious at the moment, but I’m not in it. Because I have to paint. Or promote. Or look for a gallery. Or find out about prints of my artwork. Plus I’ve got a Christmas card to design. Not that I’m going to be paid for it, but because it’ll be good promotion for me, and maybe, it’ll bring some more work in for me. Maybe……