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July 30, 2013
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Selling Your Art - What do you do?

:iconsmidow:
Smidow Featured By Owner Jul 30, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
I figure there are many of you that sell your art successfully and I was just wondering what's the best way to go about it? I'm not making enough money with my current job so extra income on the side would be ideal. However, the only thing I could really do is art (if even that!)

Is it best to advertise locally and go from there? Or go to conventions? Something else entirely?

It seems like art done in color sells better than just in pencil, would you agree? Do you cater to the crowds? I'm not even sure what's popular right now Lol.

I guess just whatever any of you have experienced and figured out? I know that's really broad but I am having trouble wording it properly :XD:
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:iconmeganmissfit:
MeganMissfit Featured By Owner Aug 7, 2013  Student Digital Artist
Me personally? I sell in my Etsy shop, and I create the prints myself with my giclee printer and package/ship them out from my home. It's quite difficult to sell on there, but it is doable if you can dedicate the time to it.

I also sell in person at many conventions and local shows. I do multiple conventions a year, mostly in-state but I am starting to venture out of state. In person shows tend to sell way better than online. 
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:iconkeecarroll:
KeeCarroll Featured By Owner Aug 7, 2013  Student Digital Artist
I sell prints, bookmarks, cards, and originals at a yearly art sale called "Art for Under $100". It has a lot of professional and hobbyist artists from the surrounding community, and the lowered prices keep everyone pretty humble, but there's some real talent there. 
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:iconspidermilkshake:
SpiderMilkshake Featured By Owner Jul 31, 2013  Professional General Artist
Getting commissioned for game artwork always helps the money situation. That and I think single person commissions are always good to have open, and make sure you keep a good business attitude towards any and all of them. Word-of-mouth is an under-rated form of advertising, but it's one of the best.

And prints should be available to sell at all times. Just in case. And through many sites, just to make sure that someone who might want to buy art doesn't only visit one of those sites and miss you entirely. I've opened up a Zazzle.com store using my artwork to decorate household goods and electronics cases along with poster prints and wrapped canvas, and even though that site's money-making system works a lot like DA's if you get noticed by a browsing sales department person working for even a small store you can get a little bundle in orders. It's sometimes slow though. I'd go with commissioned work to make a more reliable living.
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:iconsmidow:
Smidow Featured By Owner Jul 31, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Game artwork huh? To even get to that point I assume it's reliant on promoting yourself and your work in addition to word of mouth? Or..? And what do you mean by single person commissions? I know I've offered commissions before but I was primarily photography in the past before I went back into drawing. Maybe it's because all I do is pencil but no one was ever interested :lol:

Ah, that makes sense! Maybe I'll have to create some to have around purely for that purpose. I did try opening a few but quickly forgot about them sadly lol. I'll have to try that again!

Sounds like it lol. I'll just have to practice with color or digital art then, since I just don't think pencil sells as well (or it seems like it anyhow). Thank you much for your thoughtful response! :)
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:iconspidermilkshake:
SpiderMilkshake Featured By Owner Jul 31, 2013  Professional General Artist
Yeah, getting to where you can get game art commissions or even two or three illustrations for books you either have to be out promoting yourself or insanely lucky that a game developer looking for an artist comes across you (like I did! :icondummyplz:)
One-person commissions I meant advertising on notice boards and in communities that you'll do portraits or portrait paintings or whichever for any random customer to find and call you up. :D I know of a guy in the town over from me who makes half his year's salary on pet portraits alone (he's not on here, sadly, he's a really awesome oil painter).
Prints are nicccccce. Color would be a good idea to work with--most people who buy art or pay for commissions prefer colored art. I've only seen a few monochrome things get sold, and they were epicly good.

:aww: Welcome!
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:iconsmidow:
Smidow Featured By Owner Aug 5, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Ooh, I bet! Hey, that's awesome! :) I bet that felt amazing when that happened!

OH! I see now! I never thought to do anything like that to be honest! Too bad I have only painted twice though! I don't think I'd be willing to advertise such things :p Unless they were okay with pencil :lol: Oh, that's such a shame! I'd love to see their work!

Yeah they are! I completely agree. I too favor colored ones.. lol.
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:iconendless-ness:
Endless-Ness Featured By Owner Jul 31, 2013  Student Filmographer
I do commissions and commercial work when I have time, but often I'm so busy! So I've set up an Etsy shop where I sell prints, original paintings and premade logos. I've made like 11 sales as of now so it's not that lucrative yet but I'm working on it. I liked the idea of premade logos because I can make them when I have time, then when I sell one I just open my Photoshop file, change the text and send the files to the client. I can do it even when I'm swarmed with college stuff. Plus I can re-sell them indefinitely. Prints are similar, I have a stack already signed and numbered in my closet and when one sells I just have to ship it.
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:iconsmidow:
Smidow Featured By Owner Jul 31, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Wow that does sound pretty handy! I've heard of Etsy but I don't know much about it sadly lol. Very, very interesting though. Perhaps I'll have to look into Etsy as well! Thank you much for your thoughtful response! :)
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:icontristanberndtart:
TristanBerndtArt Featured By Owner Jul 31, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
Commissions often pay the best. Now I don't mean commissions by regular people I mean when companies commission you. I do that stuff all the time and you get sooo much more money than just making things and selling it, hoping a buyer comes by. However doing company work requires you to be in the higher skill range. 
When doing personal work I just do things I love and try to focus on the things that will get me more jobs. 
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:iconsmidow:
Smidow Featured By Owner Jul 31, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Oh man, I bet lol. How do you even get into doing commissions for companies when you're at that level though? Or do they just find you? O.o Sounds like I should get practicing though then Lol.

Makes sense, the most logical way to do it! Thank you so much for your thoughtful response! :)
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:icontristanberndtart:
TristanBerndtArt Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
I get my work in different ways. I often email a companies AD, send some kind of portfolio or link to one and say how "I'd love to work with them" 
Other times I get emails from an AD that saw my work some were and they offer me a job that way. 

It's all smart marketing and doing good work. It's kinda hard just to sit around and hope someone finds you. You can also do stuff like submitting your work into a magazine like ImagineFX and then a tone of people all over the world will se you (something I'm going to do soon and I'm fairly certain I'll get in based on the quality of art that is shown in the "ExPosť" section) 

The hardest part is go get good enough were people actually would want to spend money on you. dA has a culture of people selling lower quality art for next to free so you need to rise above that but you also then have to compete with professionals but there isn't a lack of jobs so you don't have to worry about that :) 
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:iconsmidow:
Smidow Featured By Owner Aug 5, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Oh wow, I never thought to do that. Not that I'm anywhere near it right now but interesting to know! That's pretty awesome that they find you too though! You had me curious and I had to check out your work, pretty awesome :meow:

Yeah, that makes sense. I guess I've never known where to look! I've never heard of that magazine but I'll have to Google it. I'm curious now :o That is too cool! Yeah, good luck regardless though! :)

Yeah, I noticed lol. Hmm, time to get practicing then methinks! 
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:iconglori305:
Glori305 Featured By Owner Jul 30, 2013
Art sells better in person, than on the net.

If you are going to sell on the net, you need to get out there and market it.  Facebook, blog, join groups that are relevant, if you draw horses, join groups about raising and breeding horses etc.


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:iconsmidow:
Smidow Featured By Owner Jul 31, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
That makes sense. Seeing the artist probably helps one way or another huh? Lol.

Aah, I didn't think about that. Hmm. Sounds like I have plenty to figure out yet haha. Thank you very much for your thoughtful response! :)
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:iconglori305:
Glori305 Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2013
Art is also usually an impulse buy, no one NEEDS art. So being able to talk them into it helps. People generally are trying to talk themselves out of spending money on unneeded items to save up for a car, or a trip to hawaii or something big.
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:iconsmidow:
Smidow Featured By Owner Aug 5, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
This is very true. I myself don't buy it much for that very reason :( Hmm.. very true. I'm not a good salesman though! I suppose I've gotta learn then though :XD:
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:iconmaejonin:
maejonin Featured By Owner Jul 30, 2013  Professional General Artist
There isn't one way to do it because its about knowing your market and selling towards that. Supply and demand type of thing. First people have to know about your art, which is advertising. This is word of mouth, by your buisness cards, at conventions, networking, whatever you choose. 

Then you need a place where later, people can contact you. On your buisness card is one, and effective, since people aren't good at memory most of the time. You should at least also have a website to display your porfolio, contacts, where your Facebook is, what you do, make contacts and quotes etc. Ive been recommending people to weebly, because the features you need for selling your work are pretty much set. The main feature is that you can drag and drop stuff, making it less HTML intesive, and more general public friendly.
Click here to make your website now.

Lastly, its making your work remarkable. Meaning a person has to make your art social and talk about. Recognizing what is popular right nows is good, but takes some reasearch or just listening what people are talking about. Think about the reverse and what you like to buy or what you subscribe to.

Art is basically business and both are about getting to know you and your art work. 
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:iconsmidow:
Smidow Featured By Owner Jul 31, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Aah yes, that makes sense. I'll have to look around then and start trying to promote myself too. Though I know I probably need plenty of improvement and practice! I'll look into business cards too!

Oh really? That sounds convenient! I'll check it out tomorrow after work when I can get to a computer :) Sounds like I have some research to do too. Thank you so much for taking the time to give me a thoughtful response! :)
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