The Thriving Artist

By The Clark Hulings Foundation

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The THRIVING ARTIST PODCAST is a feature of the Clark Hulings Foundation, which exists to provide training, professional introductions, and funding for working artists, to turn working artists into THRIVING artists. Tune in for insights from other artists, art industry experts, art collectors, and business specialists. Don't be a starving artist, be a thriving artist!

Episode Date
How to Build a Robust Creative Economy That Rewards Everyone—including Artists
38:01
How do we live in a robust culture? How do we produce a robust culture at a time when we are fracturing, polarized, and creative enterprise is an afterthought? Let's remind ourselves of where we are. If you look around, you see political fragility, economic uncertainty, and general unhappiness. That's depressing. That's the point. As a people, we ARE depressed. You don't look back at 2021, let alone what's going on now, and go, "it's a happy time." We're not happy and we have to face it. We've got essentially a global war, and a recession only partly driven by that war. We've got a big economic bubble. We have a politically fractured culture at a global level. Totalitarianism, never the friend of a creative culture, is coming back in vogue. We're at each other's throats. We're not happy.  The beast is slouching toward Jerusalem. The earth is heating up. We're settling into (if we're lucky) a mere detente as two nations living in one national entity. Arguably, we began going in that direction in 1945 when we settled into the Cold War and that generated the Korean war, the Vietnam war, El Salvador... and we decided to live in a state of permanent animosity, driven by munitions manufacturers, the intelligence apparatus, and munitions and chemical industries that profit from it. There was a huge amount of money to be made. Those chemical makers clean your baby and make for a sparkling kitchen and they also do deforestation in Laos. All of that to say that we're now in an understandable state of fragility when it comes to the role of creativity in our lives. We have a tenuous relationship with art. We do not even now dream so much anymore. Our dreams are smaller. We don't dream of a world that flourishes and we haven't been given a mechanism to build better dreams. The material on CHF's site is basically an insistence that there is another path—that we're working to solve that problem in a robust way. How do we get a robust and flourishing culture in the first place? That's the entrance to the conversation we are creating. As a culture, we tend to put creatives in a box. And even the goal of showcasing artists as essential workers and ensuring they're well-paid is not yet dreaming big enough. I think even those dreams are too small. I don't want to be a useful cog in someone's wheelhouse. I don't want to work for somebody because I have the skills. I want to work for somebody because without creative enterprise, we don't 'make it' as a culture. We must move away from the merely theoretical lament toward a vision of doing something practical and economically powerful. Without that, We don't build a robust creative culture. We must build a road for artists to thrive, and creativity to flourish, and it has to be done at the economic and investment level. Anything less creates the same problem we had all through the cold war, which is the starving artist syndrome. Only the 1% of artists can be famous and only those who know the right people and happen to gain the approval of the taste-makers can make any money. Everybody else is dirt poor and living on their cousins' sofas. What we're doing at CHF isn't sexy in a theoretical way, but it's actionable and practical. We're asking people to dig deep into the thought process of how we get a culture that we want to live in. And we are starting from the premise that you don't get a robust creative culture without a thriving creative economy.  I don't think we've widely connected the dots between these big questions—first, daring to ask them and then to dream of the ubiquitous, middle-class artist. How do you actually do it? What is the day-to-day? How do you actually implement it? And that's where we actually do have an answer.   It starts at the mindset and knowledge level. We foster a conversation around art as a business, and we empower art-entrepreneurs with the business training all other industries require to flourish. We connect creative...
Jul 26, 2022
Virtual & Analog Art—Daniel DiGriz
16:13
“We’re going to need more art—all of it—to solve the world’s challenging problems. Creative intelligence is what it takes to inject life into the culture, to drive effective leadership, to drive new ideas. We don’t have to choose. We can have one foot in the world of visceral taste and touch and another foot in the digital world without having to split ourselves in half.” ​​​​This is a bite-sized The Thriving Artist™podcast episode with Daniel DiGriz’s perspective on art news and cultural change. As you may know from previous episodes, Daniel peruses the art news of The New York Times. This time, a couple of headlines really stood out! The first one is 50 years of Taking Photography Seriously. The synopsis: When the Photographer's Gallery opened in London in 1971, few saw the medium as suitable for exhibitions. Today everyone does. The second article is Hands Off the Library's Picture Collection! The synopsis: Cornell Spiegelman and Warhol browse the famous collection of images in the New York Public Library. Now a century of serendipitous discovery will come to an end if the collection is closed off to the public. This episode is courtesy of Shirley Lemmon.
Nov 26, 2021
Clark Hulings—Archetype of the Independent Artist
54:00
James D. Balestrieri is the Clark Hulings Foundation’s Writer-in-Residence. He is currently working on a new book on Hulings, Clark Hulings: Quantum Realist. Jim is the proprietor of Balestrieri Fine Arts, a consulting firm that specializes in catalogue research and arts writing, estate and collections management, and marketing and communications for museums and auctions. Jim has a BA from Columbia University, an MA in English from Marquette University, an MFA in Playwriting from Carnegie-Mellon, and was a Screenwriting Fellow at the American Film Institute. He served as Director of J.N. Bartfield Galleries in New York for 20 years and has published over 150 feature essays and reviews in a wide variety of national arts publications. In this episode, Jim gives us an in-depth look at the themes of the upcoming Hulings book, and discusses how Clark Hulings’ career strategy applies to working artists today. Inspired by Hulings’ successes both within—and outside of—art tastemakers’ approval, Jim and Daniel question who gets to decide which artists matter, and how the canon does and does not serve the best interest of the arts, or artists. Hulings’ accomplishments, both as an artist and a small business owner, call to his deeper understanding of the dignity of work—from running a market stall to the act of making a living as a painter—as a way of belonging to the world. A Painter of Work“Clark Hulings was an American artist. A realist—in a way. He began his career as a very successful illustrator in the golden age of illustration.” “The thing that sets him apart is the subject that he found, chose, and made his life’s work. His life’s work is depicting work. Working people in working situations—whether they’re farmers, laborers, whether it’s an urban setting, a village setting, or a rural setting. What he captured was working people at work, doing what they do. And that sets him apart from almost any other American realist of that time.” “Lots of people associate Clark with Western Art. [...] But really, the number of paintings he did that could be considered Western or Southwestern is miniscule compared to the numbers of paintings he did in Mexico and Europe. So there’s a whole idea that Elizabeth [Hulings] and I have talked about, which is repositioning Clark Hulings as an American Artist, and indeed, an international artist.” “[Hulings] doesn’t really give you a story. They’re not narrative paintings. He moves his easel painting as far from illustration as you can imagine. You see these people working and you wonder what they’re thinking, and what they’re like, and what their inner lives are. But he gives them their privacy.” Travel Beyond Tourism“For Hulings, travel—and if you look at his paintings, you can see it—travel was a way for him to find places. I would use the word 'traditional places,' where the traditions of work and of life were on a long continuum. He seems to be very interested, not only in showing, ‘oh yeah, those women are washing clothes in a street today,’ but in showing that the place around them was a place that had been inhabited for a long time, so that what they were doing was on a long continuum of existence. A kind of deep time. And for those, you’ve got to travel.” “There's a whole tradition of travel painting where there are paintings of the famous places: paintings of Notre Dame, paintings of the Ponte Vecchio, paintings of this [or that]...That's not Clark Hulings is about. The first painting that really attracted me to his work is this https://www.clarkhulings.com/2021/body-and-soul-street-in-naples/ (small painting he did of Naples). And it's this narrow street. Narrow. You couldn't even get a car, one car down there, much less two. And there are deep shadows and the laundry is hanging across it. This is not the Amalfi Coast, this is not some famous resort.” “It's travel of a particular kind that really attracts him. In order to find the kinds of places that Clark Hulings wanted to...
Mar 24, 2021
Stock Art Can Go to Hell: Corporate Art Without Compromise
01:20:17
Artist and illustrator Melissa Whitaker works full-time for companies across the US, bringing her signature pop-graphic-noir style to their branding and storytelling. Melissa’s clients include Madpipe and Free Agent Source. Commissions include food and beverage, real estate, and medical industries—as well cover art for authors and musicians. Her work has been exhibited in LA, San Francisco, KC, and St. Louis. If you happen to be her part of the world, look for her new billboard for the Arts Council Southern Missouri; it’s a satisfying full circle from when she was featured on that same billboard years ago as a real estate agent. Whitaker made the commitment to a full-time art career later on as an adult: she kick-started her art-business skills with CHF and never looked back. https://itsallintheart.com/ (itsallintheart.com) The Thriving Commercial Artist“Companies want to tell the story of who they are, and why they do what they are doing. Maybe they can’t find the perfect stock photography for their business. They will come to me to illustrate their story, and make their website or material, even their PowerPoint presentations, stand out from the rest.” “Companies are adapting to be able to reach out to people who are not socializing much anymore. They’ve got to put that personality into their marketing presentations. I see new people coming in for personal illustrations: I’m talking to a real estate agent right now who wants to make herself stand out from all the other agents out there. So I’m excited!” “A whole new world of crypto art is coming out. It works a lot like Bitcoin where you can take your digital artwork and you basically encrypt it, where the person who’s buying that is buying the original—virtual original in a way—so it’s not just a digital copy. And that has value to it.” Collaboration: The Artist’s Voice in Commercial Work“The client will tell me: ‘I want a subway station platform.’ I will put myself there, thinking: ‘if I am on the subway, if I get off the subway and I’m on that platform and I’m waiting…How am I going to stand? How am I going to see that train? Where is the train coming from? Who are the people around me? And that’s what goes into the picture. So I would say a lot of myself goes into the picture because I put myself there.” “I’ll talk with the client and I get a sense of what they are looking for. A lot of questions come out, such as what kind of mood are you looking for? What do you want your customer to feel when they look at this? What is your objective? All of that is information that is needed in order to tell the story accurately.” “In today’s culture, a lot of people refer to movies. They’ll say, ‘I’m thinking of The Transporter,’ or ‘I’m thinking of 80s music’ and they’ll give me a playlist. That puts me into the zone and it will come out in the art. I try to put everything, all of me, into the art—so whatever is going in, is coming out into the art. “Sometimes I’ll do rough drafts to get an idea of what the customer wants. And there are times where I have an image in my head and I’ll just do the whole thing and send it to them, because sometimes the client doesn’t know what they want until they see it. Or they can’t envision the rough draft in the final completion of the project.” “There are struggles at times. There are directions I want to go, and the client has to pull me back and say no, no, no, that’s that’s the wrong way. Or, ‘that looks really fun but we can’t go there.’ So that can be difficult, but often I will go ahead and still create it because I can always use it somewhere else. I’m very open to change and adapting because I will always try to make something work.” Technique & Composition: from Walls to Web“If it’s a complex illustration with several individual people—each character is drawn individually and on a separate layer so that they can be reused. They’re like stickers: you can post them here or there, which makes it unique and has...
Jan 26, 2021
Virtualize Your Art Career: Part 2
35:05
In the second episode of this two-part podcast, Carolyn Edlund weighs-in on how artists can shift their sales strategies and build an art business that will weather these tough times, as well as being resilient to future changes. Contrary to popular belief, collectors are buying art right now, and artists can zoom in on their relationships, update their platforms, and define or redefine their target markets to make this work in their favor. Carolyn is Sales & Events Director at CHF and our faculty subject matter expert on Sales Strategy. She is the founder of ArtsyShark—and brings a background as an artist, former ED of the Arts Business Institute, years in art-publishing and licensing, and extensive experience in curriculum development and seminars for artists. https://clarkhulingsfund.org/conference/start/ (Work with Carolyn & the CHF Faculty online at the Virtualize Your Art Career™ Conference October 19-30.) What a Sustainable Art Business Looks Like In Today’s Environment“There are opportunities to really grow your business. I’ve spoken to several artists lately who are making more sales than ever before. Now, how in the world is this happening? I’m sure you’re thinking, ‘What!? Who’s doing that?’ The artists who are making these sales have given some deep thought to how they are going to go virtual with their marketing and sales strategies. And they’re going 100 percent in that direction, using tools online that are helping them reach an audience who is actually very hungry to buy right now.” “Everybody is sitting at home, people are bored, they’re shopping and they are buying art. We know that’s happening. We know there has been an uptick in art sales. So the people that I see who are succeeding—when I get down into the weeds with them, like, ‘What are you actually doing?’ It turns out that they’ve got systems built into their business that are very methodical for drawing an audience, introducing them to their work, getting them with a hook, and then selling their work. And then selling more work to them. They’re building a very sustainable business with repeat sales, which is what we want to do in any environment. It is possible to do that during a pandemic.” Leverage Your Art and Your Collectors For That Repeat Sale“I love repeat sales because it’s easier to sell to an existing customer. They’re the foundation for an ongoing business—where you have existing sales that happen again and again. Part of that is leveraging the work that you sell. I talk about that when I teach sales strategy, and I’m going to be talking more about that in our conference: are you leveraging your collector by selling to them over and over? Are you leveraging your work by selling the next piece in a set? It’s a way of thinking: what do I have that’s going to appeal to people? What can I offer them if I want to keep them as customers, and as eager customers, who will want to own more of my work?” Embrace Your Power as an Individual Artist“The market has evolved over the last 20-25 years toward the empowerment of the individual artist. We’ve seen it in other industries. If we look at, for example, the movie industry, back in the day the studios owned all the actors and they would say, ‘You’re doing four movies this year,’ or ‘I’m going to loan you out to Warner Brothers.’ And they would direct the career of the ‘stable’ of actors that they would control. Nowadays, we see actors who are now directing their own production companies. They have their collaborations. They are free, they are empowered. They can do the projects that they choose to do and they’re setting their own career paths. Visual artists are in much the same position. It is not always emotionally easy to step up and say: ‘Yeah, I’m going to be the CEO of my own art business.’ It might be your personality to say, ‘Gee, you know, I wish somebody else would just sell for me.’ But there are advantages to being...
Oct 14, 2020
Virtualize Your Art Career: Part 1
53:44
Carolyn Edlund is the Sales & Events Director at the Clark Hulings Foundation, and our resident subject matter expert in Sales Strategy. In the first episode of this two-part podcast, Carolyn joins us to answer questions about making a creative career virtual. Artists and makers, you can make a great decision to thrive during the pandemic and beyond: learn with Carolyn and the CHF Faculty in real time by registering for the online https://clarkhulingsfund.org/conference/start/ (The Virtualize Your Art Career™ Conference Oct 19-30th.) Carolyn is the founder of ArtsyShark—a popular blog that publishes features on artist portfolios and articles on the business of art—and the former executive director of the Arts Business Institute. An artist herself, Carolyn pivoted to sales in the art-publishing business—she learned the world of price points, merchandising, building collections, and closing deals, by working a territory and becoming a top rep. She has designed curriculum for multiple art-business platforms and has presented hundreds of live seminars for artists and makers. Selling Art During the Pandemic“Artists are being pushed into getting online and becoming experts at communicating and selling online. We don’t have much of a choice. The events are closed, postponed, canceled. They’re not happening in person. And as wonderful as the in-person events are (and, you know, we’ve traditionally relied on them) just like Hiscox [Online Art Trade Report 2020] noted: this is a transformation. We’ve been moving towards an online economy, an art industry that is robust in the online space, and this is forcing the issue.” “This is putting people in a sink or swim position where you’ve got to make decisions. You aren’t going to change your whole life, but you’ve got to make decisions about getting into the online market and making it work for you. And that, to me, is a huge opportunity. It might not be something that every artist is looking forward to, but ultimately they will really benefit from it.” Opportunities & Challenges of Selling Online“It becomes very crowded when everyone is jumping online—and we know that’s true because art website providers are reporting record numbers of new clients coming in. They all want to set up websites.” “Anyone who is in the virtual marketplace has to fight for attention—establish that space, gather the people who are their followers, either through social media profiles or a list that they’ve built so that they can continue that conversation, and then use those interested people to turn into customers and clients.” “The personal touch is very appreciated these days. If you’ve got a collector who feels like they know you, they like you, they appreciate your work, and you say: ‘I want to reach out to you because I’ve got a new body of work and I haven’t shown anyone yet. But you own two of my paintings, and I really want to give you first dibs. How about we jump on a Zoom call? How about we literally get into a face to face conversation. I’ll show you what I’ve got.’ I like the personal outreach. And even though that might be a little bit scary, I think that over time, as you get to know your customer base, there will be people that you can reach out to and you’ll find that they appreciate and love hearing from an artist, and love talking with you, and that that engagement excites them. It’s part of the collector experience.” What Does Virtualizing Your Art Career Mean?“There’s going to be a range for some people. It may only be that they get a website, and then they’re continuing on with what they’ve been doing for years. For other artists, virtualizing means a new format.” “For example, you might be an artist who teaches. You’re not going to be teaching in person right now, but you might be building courses on an online learning platform, you might be teaching through YouTube.” “If you are an artist who typically offers reproductions or is considering it, you...
Sep 30, 2020
Selling Art in The New Normal: Marketplace, Native Communities, and Virtual Reality
01:19:18
The http://market.swaia.org/ (Virtual Edition of The Santa Fe Indian Market) offers an amazing atmosphere of delight and awe at a time when most of us are cooped up in our own worlds of social distance. SWAIA Executive Director Kim Peone joins CHFs Executive Director Elizabeth Hulings, Artpsan Founder & Director Eric Sparre, and leader of the Vircadia Implementation Project & CHF Board Member, Steve Pruneau. Tune in for a wide-ranging discussion lead by host Daniel DiGriz about how all four organization are actualizing possibilities for collaboration and community in the digital world, how Native Artists are poised to flourish in this year’s market and beyond, a profile of the events and gallery spaces in NDN World, and how all of these partner organizations are championing artists as they emerge as leaders and innovators in our changing economy. To purchase the artists’ work, visit https://swaia.artspan.com/ (swaia.artspan.com). Beginnings: How Virtual Edition of SWAIA’s Indian Market StartedKim: “This was a scenario where SWAIA needed to pivot after cancelling their Indian Market due to the pandemic. I came on board after the organization had spoken with Clark Hulings Foundation on that possibility. Once I became the Executive Director of the organization and vetted that quickly with my board and staff and Clark Hulings’ team as well, it seemed like it was a great partnership for us to collaborate together and move this vision forward. It was a concept at the time, and now we’re really in a place of vision. And so it’s been a great partnership. And I’m really excited to be part of this collaboration.” Elizabeth: “SWAIA has been a champion for Native arts for almost 100 years. CHF is interested in promoting artists’ ability to earn a living, and therefore get their art to market, so that the market can decide what it likes and what it wants to buy. We want to level the playing field, get as much out there as possible, and let everybody have a fair shot. It’s a beautiful combination: we have an organization whose goal is to do that for Native arts, and an organization that is coming from the artists’ perspective to drive that forward. Instead of a top-down, it’s really a bottom-up proposition.” Working with Native American ArtistsKim: “This is really a ceremonial moment—where, just like when we go to our traditional powwows, we go there not only to dance, but we go there to be in a place where there is community, ceremony, and camaraderie. So I think that is no different than Indian Market.” Kim: “Working with Native American communities, you’re definitely working with a population that’s underserved. We have recognized, especially in my past experience in working with tribal governments, that it’s very challenging to do economic development within those organizational structures. This is the first time that I’ve been able to work for an organization which represents Native American tribes where we’re truly in that place of free commerce—and so it allows us to be creative.” Kim: “The resilience part of this is something that we’ve been dealing with for generations. So how do we come out of that miry clay and become something? I really appreciate being with an organization where we can empower individuals in doing that, and then as an organization come alongside them to support them. I also feel like it’s a scenario where if you’re helping one artist, you’re not just helping them, you’re helping a family—and that family is helping a community. It really is a ripple effect, as opposed to other artists organizations where it’s very individualized. When we look at an artist, we look at an artist in reference to their tribal affiliation, what nation they are representing. For SWAIA and our juried artists, that’s 220 nations that we’re touching, personally. For us it’s about not only resilience for the artists, but for the community.” The Online Art Community &...
Aug 29, 2020
Build Your Own Future With Or Without The Establishment
30:57
Artist Ashley Longshore has never waited for industry gatekeepers to open doors for her: she’s a wildly successful, self-made entrepreneur. Owner of The Longshore Studio Gallery in New Orleans and two high-traffic Instagram profiles, her partners, collaborators, and collectors are a who’s-who of upscale brands and celebrities: Dianne Von Furstenburg, Bergdorf Goodman, Gucci, Rolex, Miley Cyrus, Blake Lively, Penelope Cruz, Salma Hayek, and Eli Manning. Ashley’s been described as a “modern Andy Warhol” for her pop art sensibilities. Rizzoli New York has recently published her second book I Do Not Cook, I Do Not Clean, I Do Not Fly Commercial. In this episode, Ashley weighs-in on instinct, strategy, and other lessons learned in the art business—and discusses being a working artist during the pandemic. Keep your ears open for some very funny, candid, and insightful one-liners. Artists Are Entrepreneurs“Artists are entrepreneurs. There’s nothing wrong with wanting to be financially successful. The idea is that you get to a point where your profits are coming in, people are engaging with your artwork, you have that intimacy within your collector base, and you’ve got enough money in your bank account to make any idea that you have in your brain come to fruition. To me that’s the ultimate goal.” “I think in America you have an opportunity to make your own past. When I was told I wasn’t marketable, I decided to build this on my own. Although it wasn’t the easy way, it was the better way, because I understand my audience, I understand my engagement, and I’ve been able to build friendships that led me to great opportunities. Those opportunities have led me to extremely successful creative people.” “I have created what I have created on instinct alone. And you know, artists know how to use tools, they know process. Very early, I realized: I’m not going to work with galleries, I’m going to create my own system; I’m not going to give up 50%, I’m going to keep 100% of my profit margins. I’m going to build a business.” “I needed to hire people based on the demand for my work—more graphic designers, more photographers, more salespeople. There’s a lot of power in that. I knew I was going to do this my own way, no matter what. That’s the thing: you find your own path and you go for it.” What It Takes To Be Successful“In the beginning, honestly, [it’s about] being as prolific as you can be, understanding your voice, being able to figure out how to be kind to yourself when you’re not completely inspired and on fire. You have to have that strong inner voice of, ‘I can do this, I’m going to be okay. It’s alright that I’m not inspired right now.’ It’s all these little inner thoughts of positivity and optimism. You’ve got to start building that wall inside of you. Because the more you put yourself out there, the more open you are to criticism and the bull**** from the world.” “F*** the establishment. F*** what anybody else thinks! You go after it, you cut your own path, you do what you have to do. You know, I’ve been turned down more than a bed in a cheap motel. Rejection is part of what’s going to happen no matter what you do as a creative person, as an entrepreneur, as an ‘artrepreneur’.” “The things that I do, I do them with enthusiasm, I do them with gratitude. And I think that energy is really infectious. I also work my ass off, I work quickly, I work my team. And when I’m given a huge opportunity from a billion-dollar global corporation, I work myself to DEATH to make sure that I not only produce, but I over-produce, and I blow their doors off. I mean I live for that moment when they go, ‘You did what?!’ ” “Start off with a goal like: I want to make $200 this week. I want to make $200, how can I get creative with my marketing? How can I find out who my audience is? Start with that. Start with that, it’s the little steps. No instant gratification. Instant gratification gets you drunk, high or pregnant.” Art As A Luxury...
Jun 08, 2020
Lockdown: Artists Double Down on Building Robust Businesses and Self-Help Networks
50:08
It’s a timely moment to be interviewing the team from CERF+, a leading nonprofit focused on safeguarding artists’ livelihoods nationwide. Founded in 1985—by and for materials-based artists and craftspeople—their core services are education programs, advocacy, network- building, and emergency relief. Key players in the recovery of creative industries after Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico, CERF+ also responded to artists impacted by Hurricanes Irma and Harvey, assisted after the California wildfires, and are actively engaged in a Covid-19 response. Their advocacy for artists is ongoing—both in times where planning and prevention are the emphasis—and in providing support in recovery from a crisis. Cornelia Carey is CERF+’s Executive Director and the founder of the National Coalition for Arts Preparedness & Emergency Response. Carrie Cleveland is their Education and Outreach Manager. Thanks to Jerry’s Artarama for their support of CHF and The Thriving Artist™ podcast. About CERF+“CERF was originally called ‘Craft Emergency Relief Fund.’ But after Hurricane Katrina, CERF committed to doing a lot more work in the preparedness and mitigation realm. We realized that no amount of money that we could ever raise was going to right somebody’s life when it had been reduced to a slab, a studio, or a home. We needed to invest in helping artists be more prepared and build more resilient careers. So that’s how we became CERF+. The ‘plus’ being all of that preparedness.” “ https://cerfplus.org/cerfplus-responds-to-covid-19/ (We are actively aggregating, creating, combining, curating resources and information that help artists look at this current crisis). At last count there were 130 emergency relief funds that have been created for artists around the country and in the territories; there have been 3 federal aid packages that artists can access—so we want to make sure our artists are aware of these opportunities and how to navigate them.” Advocacy for Artists“We’ve been working with cultural advocacy groups and Americans For The Arts, and making sure that the needs of artists and other self-employed workers are embedded in federal relief packages. Traditionally, self-employed workers, gig workers, and artists have not been a part of federal relief packages.” “Advocacy is educating decision-makers about the issues and the needs of a very important population in this country that might not be represented—in disaster response, for example.” “The arts serve everyone in this country. Not just left-leaning or right-leaning.” “Artists, like many other self-employed workers, don’t have access to a safety net of benefits that often comes with employment, such as health insurance, paid time off, and other supports and security.” “We’ve been making the case that artists’ careers are small businesses, and like any other small business, they employ people, they purchase equipment and supplies and materials, they buy real estate, they rent real estate. They are definitely part of economies.” “We did research in 2013 about the status of artists in the craft field. We found that 75% of them have 3 months of savings or less. So if you look at this current crisis with things shutting down in March—you know by May, it’s a pretty desperate situation. So we’re in there with the other advocates for small business.” “Maybe people think artists live in a separate bucket than the economy. There’s hard data that says just how wrong that is. Just last month the Bureau of Economic Analysis reported that the Arts & Culture workforce contributed 877.8 billion dollars, or 4.5% of the nation’s Gross Domestic Product in 2017.” Helping Artists Through Disasters—Coronavirus And Beyond“With Covid-19, we’re focused on the health emergency care needs of artists who have gotten the virus, as well as still responding to the other disasters, including the recent tornados in and around the Nashville area and also artists
May 01, 2020
These Artists Graduated Training But are Entrepreneurs for Life
01:06:17
Find out how working artists become thriving artists. This is the biggest podcast we’ve ever recorded, featuring 18 voices: the graduating class of our most recent Art-Business Accelerator cohort, their Advisors, and CHF team members Daniel DiGriz and Elizabeth Hulings. 1:25-3:00 is a “walk across the graduation stage” celebration moment for each Fellow. The episode is packed with the artists’ insightful observations about the triumphs, challenges, community, and skill-building involved in developing a successful creative career, and the role CHF has played in the process. Elizabeth Hulings says: “We’re seeing some major projects here that have legs and are going to be important. I really do believe that these artists are going to continue to build on the momentum that they have, and achieve some of these big goals. And that’s really exciting.” The Value of Artist-Peers & Teams“The team has been a huge support to me. There was an opportunity that came my way that I was thrilled about, but terrified. I didn’t see how it could benefit me financially, and I wasn’t sure I wanted to participate in it. And just talking it through with my team, they all were encouraging me and helping me to see my blind spot, really. Discussion with my peers helped me so much—these are people I respect, and that encouragement meant so much to me, that it ultimately wound up being my pivotal project. I’m very thankful, I wouldn’t have had that without that particular conversation on the phone with my team.” – Steven “The fellowship program offers some really comprehensive, very successful strategies. But working in teams, what resonated for me is that in getting to know each other we could really identify the sensitive aspects that each of us had. And we were able to walk through maybe some embarrassing moments or some real difficulties that some of us had to figure out how to personalize the strategies and protocols. So to me, that was very meaningful. That human direct connection that takes into account who you are and what your motivations and intentions are.” – Robin “There’s so much in this business about personal recommendations, personal introductions. And I have found that to be one of the most valuable parts of this. Not only meeting the other artists, but any way that they can help to introduce buyers or galleries. And I hope I’ve been able to do that to a couple of my compatriots here, but I find in this business that personal recommendation is the most important for me and the one thing that I’ve gotten most out of this.” – Tim What Does A CHF Accelerator Fellow Artist Do After Graduation?“I am going to pursue my pivotal project, which was to build an addition on my studio so I can create larger sculptures. And I’m grateful to this program for helping to solidify my thought process about that—and also spurring me into action and holding me accountable.” – April “I’m definitely going after my pivotal project. This was an idea that I cooked up about 12 years ago and I kind of let it fall by the wayside. And being with CHF and getting the encouragement in the direction that I did, I am definitely doing this in the coming year. […] The thing that was so helpful to me was the creation of an action plan through the career blueprinting. Because it gave me the ideas to get organized and give me step-by-step of what I’m going to do throughout the year.” – Sharon “It was a total mind-shift this year, where the brand-story was so critical. The things I wanted to paint, versus what I was selling…I was seeing what I wanted to paint as sort of a negative. And now I see it as a way to differentiate myself. And that, that is something that I should be putting all of my energies into. There is a market for what I want to do. Like I said, it was just a total mind-shift on that. And I am selling them. There are buyers for the subject matter that I want to paint. So yeah, it’s been really great that way.” – Carrie Highlights of the
Feb 19, 2020
Data Science in the Arts: Report on the Working Artist
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Two years in the making, CHF’s https://clarkhulingsfund.org/rowa/ (Report on the Working Artist) (ROWA) is a truly groundbreaking piece of research: the first of its kind demonstrating artists’ pivotal role in our changing economy. In this engaging conversation, CHF’s data analysis team Daniel DiGriz and Lily Dulberg sit down to discuss the methodology and significance of the Report, the documented demand for entrepreneurial training for artists, the gaps in existing research and traditional art education—and how we now have solid and replicable data that supports artists’ ability to make measurable contributions to our economy and the culture at large. Finding a Pattern: The Bottom Line for Working Artists“We’ve got a lot of information out there from many different sources, many reputable organizations, nonprofits, and our business education programs. But there’s so little information on what artists need to drive success, and what actually changes the landscape of their art business.” “Most of the data out there does not measure bottom-line outcomes, which it’s kind of funny, right? Because you need to know those things in order to develop new programs and create best practices and to support artists.” “Many organizations had information on their websites about the different types of programs they ran, and testimonials and quotes from artists on what they need. But there was no real evidence of what these programs were able to do for the artists. There were no business results, no income results.” “With all the data that we’ve collated, and more specifically, with the data that we have done in-house at the Clark Hulings Fund through our Business Accelerator Program and our events, we really came up with a pattern that we can follow for any type of research in the future. And that is, that attitudes change behavior. Behavior produces business results. And business results lead to increased income or revenue.” “One of the main things that I think that we should take away from this, that business education moves the needle for artists. It helps them make more income, it helps them develop a more robust network which allows them to increase their sales.” The Gap: Business Education for Artists“The ecosystem of gallerists, artists, and peer networks contribute so heavily to business results—and the success that artists see in their lives and in their businesses. There really aren’t enough art business events out there and there really aren’t enough groups for artists that foster communication around what it’s like to be in an art business.” “There’s a gap, and in that gap is business education. And it’s so mind-boggling to think that only 5% of an average sampling of fine arts curriculum involves any sort of entrepreneurial or business education.” “We had to establish that there was a gap, that it exists indeed, in order to say, ‘Okay, this is how we can fill the gap, this is how we can create change and this is how artists are already creating change.’ ” “…it was really amazing to be able to shed light on how that’s already happening and the research that shows that it’s replicable. Other organizations can do it, and the secret sauce is business training.” How We Collect and Analyze Data“So at the Clark Hulings Fund, we’ve been collecting data from our fellows, from [Art-Business Conference] participants, from artists who are involved with our work in many different ways. We have a whole process behind how we do that: we make sure that everything is categorized so that we can actually analyze the themes, and there are codes for the different themes that come up in what the artists are talking about.” “When have our conferences, we have artists coming up to us, giving us testimonials, talking about the experience—and none of that is lost in translation. We’re using everything that we received from the artists because that’s really where it starts, with the people. As you said, this is a...
Nov 21, 2019
Infiltrate the Business World in the Name of Art
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Noah Scalin is an artist based in Richmond, Virginia, whose sculpture, installation, and photography use everyday items reassembled in new contexts. Noah did a major installation in Times Square in the winter of 2019, and is working with The Krause Gallery in New York City. He is also a corporate consultant at Another Limited Rebellion with his sister Mica Scalin. The firm specializes in using art and creativity in leadership development, and clients include Coke, General Electric, and Intuit. Noah was the first artist-in-residence at the Virginia Commonwealth University School of Business, where he is now an adjunct professor. Discover A Market Through Creative Practice“I ended up doing this project called Skull-A-Day where I got myself out of my creative rut and inspired again. And one of the really strange outcomes of that was that I started getting asked to talk to businesses about my creative practice. And so that turned into me doing a side-job initially of me going and doing these keynote talks and consulting, and all of a sudden I found myself, you know, really enjoying that work.” “I like to say that not only was I the first artist in residence at the VCU School of Business, but possibly the first artist in residence at any school of business anywhere. […] A few years ago the school realized that creativity was one of the principles that they needed to be teaching their students to be successful in business—and that’s a pretty radical idea, but it’s also backed up by a lot of data.” “I was like, ‘I didn’t go to business school, I don’t know anything about this.’ But I do know about how the artist’s skills set is valuable in business.” “And especially the process we use, which is: do something, and then reflect on it, and share that with other people as the next step; that that process especially—making more things and putting more things in the world—gives you more opportunities. Just sheer numbers. You know, if you do want something you measure, that’s what it is. The more you put out, the more opportunities you get for something to come back.” Top Companies Want To Learn About Creativity“Anybody in any industry right now is seeing some form of automation coming into play. And certainly, with advances in AI it’s going to be an entirely different world we live in very soon, science fiction is becoming fact very quickly.” “Certainly the jobs that are going to go last are going to be the ones that require people to creative problem-solve and come up with unique new ideas.” “It usually starts with a person of vision within the company, somebody who has recognized that creativity is one of the top skills that leadership needs to survive the Fourth Industrial Revolution.” “One of the talks I do is actually called The ROI of Creativity. And what I talk to people about is that business wants to do this measurement and wants to have these numbers and wants to be like what’s the benefit of this. And it’s really a narrow view of what we’re talking about.” “What I talk to them about is sustainable innovation and the people that need that and know what that is, they’re on board.” Creativity in Business Begins With Education“Most jobs don’t give you a chance to really develop your creativity, you’re expected to bring that to the table and have it there. And even now in the business world when they’re asking executives to be creative they’re not training them, they’re just going, ‘Start doing this, be creative, creative problem-solve!’ And they’re like, ‘I don’t know how to do that’.” “Because we’re presenting such an unusual story, people pay attention and we usually can get inside their heads and plant some seeds that they’ve needed to hear for a while; maybe the opportunity to start seeing things differently and behaving differently.” “The reason you learn math is not because you’re going to be a mathematician. And the reason you learn art is not because you’re going to be an artist,...
Aug 17, 2019
Artists Are Solving Atomic-Level Problems
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Cyndi Conn is the Executive Director of Creative Santa Fe, a non-profit arts and community development organization that emphasizes innovative collaboration between diverse groups of people with varying skills, knowledge, experiences and opinions. She serves on the Advisory Boards of The Black Mountain Institute, the National Parks Arts Foundation and the N-Square Innovators Network. In 2018 she co-chaired Mayor Alan Webber’s task force on job creation in Santa Fe. Cyndi has been a curator, gallery founder, and creator of art advisory firm LAUNCHPROJECTS. She has lived in Paris, Mexico City, Austin, and New Orleans. About Creative Santa Fe“Creative Santa Fe has the luxury of being a connective tissue type of organization.” “There were so many organizations working in such important fields and even within that their own fields, they were not working together.” “When we first said we were going to partner artists with issues, everyone was like, ‘What, you’re going to like…paint paintings of nuclear bombs?’ ” “The Nuclear Weapons Summit was our first effort at looking at this idea of the [Disruptive Futures] dialogue, bringing people together who don’t typically agree, don’t typically communicate, and using the arts to leverage—to create these bridges and anchors.” Problem-Solving with the Arts“The arts can bring people together that normally would not want to sit in a room together and talk about problem-solving.” “And then you bring in artists and young people and new types of thinkers, you really get […] people [who] don’t know what’s not possible, and so you start to create a whole new possible.” “We realized if we could get people within their own sectors actually talking and working together and then bringing in new voices—[bringing] new people to the table that either don’t typically have a voice to or aren’t typically included—like artists, we really could change the way that people talk.” Economic Impact of Artists“Creative Santa Fe was started in 2005 as a result of an economic study that the City of Santa Fe and McCune Foundation commissioned, looking at the arts economy. It came back that it was a 1.1 billion dollar a year economy but there was no single organization to spearhead and ensure the long-term sustainability of that economy.” “We need to better educate—especially our voting population and our leadership—that the arts are not just an amenity, they’re a critical function of society and a part of the fabric of social, cultural, and also economic life and livelihood for our country.” Art: Influencing Outcomes“We brought the arts in [to discussions at the nuclear weapons summit] and that’s such a leveling factor, it creates empathy, it creates a whole new paradigm for how people communicate, how they listen.” “And that’s what we’re really seeing works, and it’s worked to a really surprising extent.” “It’s not just a think tank; it’s not just talk. We are working towards an outcome that our partners need to have and feel like they can only get that outcome through this methodology that we provide. “We’ve have had over 200 partners looking at issues—everything from affordable housing, rebirth of local news, the future of art, Native resilience and rights, sustainable technologies. And for each one of these, we have partners that have very tangible outcomes that they’d like to see as a result of these dialogues.” Re-Embedding Art Into Everyday Life“In most indigenous cultures throughout the world, there was never a word for art. Because art was embedded in everyday life. At some point we started separating the arts from everything else in life. And I think that’s been to our detriment all these years. And so it’s just time to bring art back into the daily conversation, daily life, daily problem solving, to our rituals, and to our communications.” “If artists can look at what are their passions, what do they most care about? And then how can they bring their unique craft, the way they see...
Jul 11, 2019
Classical Skills for Modern Art Careers: The Case for Training and Tradition
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Mandy Theis @mandyfineartist is a figurative painter and art educator, and graduate of the Aristides Atelier. She is the president and co-founder of The Da Vinci Initiative—a foundation that supports skill-based learning in K-12 art-classrooms. Mandy is Director of the http://www.schoolofatelierarts.com/ (School of Atelier Arts) which provides atelier training and resources to art teachers through online classes, workshops and conferences, and keynote speaker services. She is also an Academic Director at the Florence Academy of Art and runs the MA in Studio Arts Degree Program in a partnership between FAA and School of Atelier Arts. Mandy is an advocate for visual literacy and figurative work in the contemporary art market. Atelier Training & Visual Literacy“Atelier training is pretty much the way artists were trained up until about a hundred years ago. The idea being that there’s inherited artistic information that has been handed down through generation after generation from one artist to another artist.” “A lot of people don’t realize it, but there are actually scientific discoveries in art just like there are in every other field.” “We can’t really move art forward if we don’t understand what’s already known about visual literacy.” “[I’m working on a book that should be released over the next year] about how visual literacy matters to every profession, so each chapter is an atelier concept and how it matters to a certain profession.” A Missing Piece in Art Education“With the advent of Modernism, there was this idea that training would ruin your creativity, and it was the artists themselves that purposely chose not to train the next generation.” “Nobody loves learning more than art teachers love to learn, and yet there’s been a separation between access to this skillset and how we train art educators in today’s time.” The DaVinci Initiative“What we’re really trying to do is take this gap and close it and provide access to these skills to art educators so that they can incorporate it into their classrooms.” “Because the training fell out of favor, it’s very, very difficult for most art educators to access it.” “We’re increasing the ability to teach very important skills about how the eye actually sees information, interprets information. This isn’t just important for artists.” “It’s about helping your eyes seeing in a more nuanced way.” “The response has been overwhelmingly positive, because we’re offering something teachers love: learning.” Skills-Based Art as Counterculture“It’s ironic that realism has become a counterculture movement in art, so to speak, or that skill-based art is the counterculture movement in art. But it excites me to think that skills matter again.” “Historically we probably know less about what it is that we’re seeing than humanity did a hundred years ago, with the access to the internet and more information in every other subject than we’ve ever had before.” “My incentive is that I want children to be able to create whatever artwork is in their heads and their hearts without compromise. I just want to provide additional options of what they can do in the classroom.” “Understanding color or shape or value or line in a really nuanced way, not just saying here’s a line…it changes how you see the world.” Figurative Art in A (Post) Post-Modern Climate“I see these two huge, big names who we like to think of as the poster children of non-realist art, are embedded very heavily in realism, turning to realism, and learning as much as they can about it.” “If you look at gaming systems, often all the edges are really hard, which kills the illusion of depth […] even in these games where they’re trying to get you to believe you’re in these other worlds, there are little pieces of the inherited artistic knowledge base that are still missing—even though they’re trying more than anybody to be realistic. Technology can only do what we give it.” “I would argue that the...
Jun 15, 2019
Fearlessly Take On The Big Daddy Ugly Goal
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Willy Bo Richardson is a painter based in Santa Fe, New Mexico and an alumnus of CHF’s Art-Business Accelerator program. Visually, his work is abstract and colorful, with a repeating motif of stripes. Willy subtracts the trappings that condition our response to art—the frame, the pedestal— and weaves art into the setting itself. The Albuquerque Museum recently acquired one of his pieces for their permanent collection, and he’s currently working with Richard Levy Gallery— while pursuing corporate projects that include wall-art licensing, and mid-size installations in European health care and gerontology settings. Willy’s long-term goal is to create totally-immersive corporate environments. CHF’s Program Results“What I really got out of CHF was on two main levels. The first level is the nuts and bolts: how to be professional. So on one level, I can run my business the way any entrepreneur or individual business owner could do it. And then there’s another level, and that is working with the other fellows and learning side-by-side.” “One of the biggest lessons I got working with you and Elizabeth and the Fellows at Clark Hulings Fund was this similar path of fearlessness of being an entrepreneur and an artist. It’s the same fearlessness. And of course fearlessness actually starts with fear. It’s a project that seems scary and I’m going to do it anyway. And then it’s a little less scary. And then the next project, it’s a bigger project with same amount of fear but now I know I can get through it.” “The challenge was to make [the goal] so scary and big that you can never accomplish it, and I’m making small steps towards that.” “One of the things that I was so attracted to Clark Hulings for was that there’s all these disruptors happening. Even the idea of what an artist is, is shifting. And I think that creates opportunities for artists not only to start making a living, but also to inject themselves into the world.” Art in Corporate Environments“Well, it started out a little bit as an idealist thing where I wanted to have my art to be available for the middle class.” “It’s an ambition of mine to put my work in front of people—not just those who have the opportunity with income and education to appreciate fine art.” “What my ‘big-dad ugly’ goal is, is to completely integrate [my work] into the environment, so that one does not think they are looking at art, but that they are sitting on a couch and the textiles, the pillows, the wall coverings, different architectural elements—we call it materials for the built-environment, and my paintings are integrated into that.” Ecological Responsibility“I made a commitment to myself and others that I would only work with those that are working towards the safest practice as possible, which is sometimes more expensive, but that does not go against my primary goal, which is high quality. Safe for the environment and high-quality often can be hand-in-hand.” “I think that our culture is actually really receptive to the idea of putting something out into the world that is doing the least amount of harm on the environment as possible.” Licensing in the Corporate Market“In the fine art world, it’s definitely kind of a no-no to license your work and to do reproductions, and that stems from a history where the technology was different.” “When I first started getting into reproductions while living in New York City, people were saying it was going to ruin my career. So every step of the way has been all the experts and those in the know telling me not to do things. That doesn’t mean when somebody says to not do something that it’s smart, it just means that you’ve got to figure out which things people are afraid of.” “Often times the art consultants are very open to whatever they think they can sell, and not so interested in one’s resume, which is really good for artists getting started—because it’s that Catch-22 of how do you get that first gallery. The first gallery wants to see that
May 29, 2019
If You Build It, They Will Ignore It. Unless…
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Mary McBride is the chair of the Arts and Cultural Management and Design Management graduate programs at Pratt Institute School of Art in New York City. An executive coach, a frequent international speaker, and a visiting professor in Spain, Turkey, India and Russia, she is also Editor of Catalyst—an online publication focusing on leadership in the 21st century. With an artistic background herself, Mary is in a unique position to see the creative aspects of business design and entrepreneurial decision-making in fields ranging from arts and culture, to publishing, financial services, technology, retail store development, apparel and packaging, and product and strategy design. Beyond the MBA“I got a call from Pratt Institute that said: ‘Do you think you can create an MBA for designers and artists and cultural people?’ And I said: ‘I don’t think they need an MBA, I think they need something that goes beyond the MBA—and almost, in a way, the antidote to the MBA.” “I wanted to make a bridge for myself between my creative side and my strategic side, and then I got an opportunity to build that bridge for lots of other people.” “What [these] program graduate students do is design experiences that will engage and enliven—and hopefully get people to be part of the culture and civilization and the conversation that we’re all trying to have.” Designing Strategy“When design is not part of strategy formulation, and it’s just part of the execution of strategy, you lose 50-75% of the value of a design.” “Part of being a successful entrepreneur is figuring out a place to locate yourself where the conditions of the ecology are supportive of what you’re trying to do.” “Entrepreneurship isn’t one step. It’s really thinking ahead to where you would like to be.” “It really makes me crazy when design professors and professionals keep saying that ‘design solves problems.’ And it does, but it’s not all that design does. It actually turns a problem into a possible opportunity for a particular group of users.” “Art is a lot of different things—mostly it is about self-expression though—whereas design is more about: what can I bring into the world that can be used by other people?” Sacrifice and Value“Words make a difference. So if I’m telling myself that [what I’m doing now] is a sacrifice, that’s very different than telling myself that this is a choice.” “When I hear people talking about how much they’re sacrificing for their art form or for their family or because they want to feed the pup, I say, well: isn’t that a choice that you’re making? If you’re a very deliberate and strategic choice-maker, shouldn’t that make you feel like a more powerful, able, person?” “I think people who know what their values are…know what their values are! So yes, they’re trading, yes they’re ‘sacrificing,’ but what they don’t trade off is what they value.” Quantifying the Value of your Art“It’s asking for a miracle to expect that what you think has value is necessarily going to have value in exchange to [your market] if you haven’t even thought about them in your creative process.” “How you quantify anything is really a matter of meeting the market on its own terms and negotiating.” “When you bring [your art] to market you meet people who understand your passion and purpose, who can help you set a financial value to [your art].” The Entrepreneurial Mind & Innovation“We get to know each other on a deeper level by creating narratives, exchanging them, seeing where it is we like to amend them… so I think it’s necessary for everyone to have that [in their] artist statement.” “I spent too long thinking about what that more traditional business approach looks like. It keeps shifting over time, and it depends on what culture, country, and part of the ecology that you’re working in.” “I actually think that most business, if it’s done well, is creative and has to be creative.” “I think most industry leaders need to first map their ecosystem of...
May 09, 2019
Tighten Your Sales Strategy, Then Refuse to Compromise
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Donna is a painter based in Beaufort, North Carolina; she’s a graduate Fellow of CHF’s Art-Business Accelerator Program, and an Emeritus Advisor for the 2019 group of Fellows. Her work is representational, and explores the nautical and coastal themes of her home. Her sales strategy involves partnering with cause-based organizations to amplify their messages through the use of fine art. Recent projects include a resident artist position with Friends of the NC Maritime Museum and a collaboration with The Kit Jones Project. CHF’s Accelerator Program Results“Being able to define what I want and where I want to go with my career has helped me immensely in so many different ways.” “When you decide what you want to do, you become more intentional about what you choose to do.” “People who get residencies, get more residencies. I went to [North Carolina Maritime Museum] and I said: ‘hey, I would really like a residency.’ This is what that would entail. Here’s what I want from you. Here’s what you’ll get from me. And with that intention, after defining myself and redefining what I want, I can actually move with a little more skill and a little more focus in order to get where I want to go.” Blueprinting Your Career—Work Ethic, Brand Narrative & Sales Strategies“I made the decision that I was going to be a professional artist, and took away all the safety nets that I had….That ‘I’m inspired today, or I’m not’— that’s not me. I get up [and say] here’s what I have to do today. This is my list. So to me, it’s that blue-collar work ethic that is applied to fine art.” “You’re better off making a sale as you.” “It’s kind of a throwback to back in the day when you had patrons, and artists worked almost as craftspeople. And they had their guilds and they were actually working for people. It’s a very similar type of relationship. So in that respect, being a blue-collar or a working artist is more valuable because they say: ‘Oh a working artist. That means you’re actually finishing and doing a job.’ And they’re very happy with that and it does help.” “Are you an artist because you call yourself one, or should you wait until someone calls you an artist? So rather than saying whether I’m an artist or not I just go, ‘I paint!’ And I leave it at that. ‘I’m a painter. I paint pictures.’ ” “I’m in a niche market of maritime art right now. And I also live in a very tourist community. [So I’m constantly asked]: ‘Can you donate this? Can you donate that?’ and I’m like, ‘No. I cannot.’ So I figured, how am I going to leverage what’s coming my way which is ‘Can you donate this?’ with: what of mine needs to be marketed?” “…I don’t donate anything. They pay me. They pay for my materials. They pay for the framing. They pay for the advertising. And so I have it set up where I may be donating my time, but I’m not out any money.” “So if you’re serious about buying a piece from me, if you have bought a piece, or you’ve come up to one of my events, you get a special newsletter that is exclusive. And I tell them it’s exclusive. I give them options and opportunities, that once I put the stuff in a gallery or online, those opportunities are gone. So it gives them a time frame in which they actually have to do something. My open rate is between 80 and 100% for those special newsletters.” The Work“I love hearing what other people have to say about my work. I really do. It’s very interesting. And I like that it’s adventurous…I’m trying to catch more of an emotion or an atmosphere more so than a representation of: ‘Here is the scene, enjoy it’.” “I’m going to do what I want to do, because I like doing it. And if I make a change, like I did in June— I made a change with how I actually put the paint on the board… and if my style changes a little bit because of that, then great, because I’m learning and personally growing in how I want to paint.” “You can’t add emotion into something if you’re not truly...
Mar 12, 2019
Lock Down Your Rights to Your Own Art
01:06:18
Emily is an Intellectual Property Attorney with over 14 years of experience handling copyright and trademark, including business and licensing agreements, infringement, prosecution, and litigation, and educating artists on the legal aspects of protecting their work. She’s the founder of Copyright Collaborative, a forum for artists to learn about their intellectual property rights, as well as work together to create a culture that deters infringement. Emily is a member of the state bars in New York, Pennsylvania, and Maine—where she currently lives. Most Visual Artists Aren’t Yet Empowered on Copyright“I discovered that artists, visual artists especially, didn’t know much about copyright and I got a general energy of powerlessness from them where they seemed to not understand what they needed to do…” “Music organizations and photography organizations have really come together to lobby the copyright office and congress to pay attention to their particular needs in the intellectual property arena. And I don’t feel that visual artists have had the same representation.” “From working with a lot of visual artists and from attending a lot of trade shows, I do get the energy that everybody is out for himself. And I’m not so sure if that’s the same in music and in photography and other artistic venues. I mean, let’s talk about filmography, videography…I would say that they’re more cohesive and unionized.” Confusion around Copyright Laws for Artists“I’ve always gone through my legal career with that I want to say ‘stone pebble in my shoe’ where I think it’s so important to educate people on what their rights are.” “In consideration of copyrights and copyright law in the United States, and all of the misinformation that’s out there on Etsy and other platforms like that, I thought it was just really important to let artists know what their rights were.” “One of the biggest misconceptions is once you express the artwork—so once you put the artwork on paper—it’s protected and all of your rights are protected right there.” “There’s been a perverse amalgamation of old copyright laws and new copyright laws. And so if you’re trying to find out certain things about copyright, you’ll see that it depends on when the work was created and when the work was published.” Important things Artists Can Do About Copyrighting Art Works“I definitely think it’s wise for artists to do some of this themselves, but I think it’s important for artists to know when they need to turn to an attorney.” “Copyright, you would go to the US Copyright Office, which is: copyright [dot] gov. And for patents and trademarks, the website is: uspto [dot] gov—United States Patent and Trademark Office.” “If you don’t file a copyright application in a timely fashion you pay a very, very significant price. […] Artists really need to copyright their works I would say, immediately.” “Take that group, take that collection of work that’s somehow cohesive, and file them under one copyright application.[…] You can file for a collection of works, so long as they haven’t been published. ‘Published’ means offered for sale or licensed.” “Protect your best-selling work. It’s always the best-selling works that gets knocked off.” ”If a company or anybody asks you for images of your work, have them sign a half-page agreement.” Copyright Infringement: DMCA Notice and the Importance of Registration“If you go to certain websites such as Alibaba, which is a very well-known carrier of infringing works, they usually won’t take down the work unless you produce a copyright registration.” ”I think it will continue to get more difficult and more stringent in getting works taken down unless you have a registration. It’s very easy to say, ‘Here’s my registration, take that work down’.” The Future of Infringement”I’m very cynical of some companies because it was almost as if, in the early 2000s, it was part of their business model, you know of a cost-benefit analysis of...
Feb 18, 2019
Make the Gig Economy Work for You
51:30
Angela is a Washington DC-based speaker, trainer, consultant, and president of TKC Incorporated. With clients including Marriott, the State Department, AARP, and 40Plus of Greater Washington, she works with adults in mid-life and beyond, helping them adapt to the changing freelance workforce. Angela has appeared in the pages of USA Today, Essence, and local news outlets across the country. She is the author of Do the Hustle without the Hassle and the host of The Gig Worker Summit. Artists in The Gig Economy“You’ll find that people are entering entrepreneurship for a whole lot of different reasons, but that freedom undergirds all of it.” “It’s a real shift in mindset that you are the owner, you’re not the employee anymore, and that the responsibilities for the success of this operation is really on your shoulders and not the company’s shoulders.” “People are more responsible for what they put out into the universe than ever before. So if you’re an emerging artist for example, you have to put out into the world who you are.” “The only way to grow in anything—whether it’s art or anything else—is to introduce it and give it to the world. And the world may not always say: ‘Ah! That’s the greatest thing since sliced bread!’ and that’s ok, because it gives us the opportunity to refine our craft.” “If your experience has been that you have all of this age discrimination against you, does it disqualify you [in a grant application] if you don’t choose say [your age]?… I would ask the grantmaker who is asking this question: what is the purpose of this? And then say: ‘I’d prefer not to answer.’ ” “The whole ‘gig’ terminology— it just kind of puts a little grey shade on things, but none of this is new—we’ve had contractors and freelancers since way back…What is new is the technology that enables us to find opportunities quickly, cheaply and affords the corporation to do the same thing.” Uncertainty & Transitions“This idea of steady income, it’s a nice notion but it doesn’t have to necessarily be the only way to profit and to be comfortable […] That fluctuation is always there, but that’s not necessarily a detriment…I think sometimes when people talk about a steady income they what they’re saying is: I want to make the same amount of money every week like I have a job.” “I have a process where I do my planning at the beginning of the year. I have a yearly calendar, I put all of my family commitments on it that I know about, like vacations. When I set up my quarterly goals, I decide exactly what I need to meet them.” “You start to get an idea about what’s realistic to make in a month, with the amount of time you want to dedicate to it. Then you have to think through whatever family obligations you have, and financial commitments you have, how you fill that gap, and then you go for those opportunities. And that’s when it may mean you’re doing some fast-pack ways to cash. Because maybe the thing you want to do is not as easily accessible, or it may have a long sales-cycle.” “I always tell people: have the possibilities all before you. Prep them up.” “We are actually in control and we can patch our income together from several different sources. And technology makes that alot easier.” Planning for Business Growth & Retirement“If you’re an entrepreneur, a gig worker, you’re an artist—because you know that every month your income might not look the same, you have to live beneath your income.” “Most of the time, if we really take a look at our [financial] vices, don’t give up everything, but take a part of that and stash it away for the future. So that you can, as you get older, have an additional little nest-egg somewhere.” “My definition of retirement is a period of time where I am working as little as I want.” Marketing & Networking“The first thing is to develop your thought leadership, so that simply means you’re speaking, you’re writing, and you’re showing. So for the artist…you’re showing...
Jan 23, 2019
Get to Emerging Artist Status and Beyond
47:36
Bonnie Clearwater is the director and chief curator at Nova Southeastern University (NSU) Art Museum in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Originally from Rockland County, New York; she has also been the Executive Director and Chief Curator of the Museum of Contemporary Art in North Miami; Executive Director of the Lannan Foundation Art Programs in Los Angeles, and Director of the Lannan Museum in Lake Worth, Florida. Bonnie is known for her scholarship on contemporary and modern art—particularly Mark Rothko, Frank Stella, and Tracey Emin. She is recognized for her curatorial vision, museum education and outreach programs, and developing the careers of emerging artists. Finding Recognition as an Artist—Emerging and Under-Recognized Categories“The art world is always looking for artists who are under-represented, and in my career, not only do I look for up-and-coming new talent, but also the artists who are overlooked for some reason or another— it wasn’t the right time or the right place.” “[Mark] Rothko was particularly concerned as to why he became well-known, whereas a number of the other artists he started out with or got to know later in his career—he felt that they were great talent as well and yet had not achieved recognition.” “Not any one person can ‘make’ an artist…it’s a mysterious process…who the influencers are changes.” “It’s hard to say to an artist that this is how they can identify how [the process of being recognized as an emerging artist] is done… the best thing they can do is make their art, have the contacts and be ready and open to possibilities.” “I think right now what I am seeing in the art world is that it has returned to the artist- driven art world.” Visibility for Artists and their Work“There are so many platforms now for an artist living in obscure or out-of-the way places to get their work out and be seen.” “Network. Make sure that if there is a museum or an art center or dealers…that the artist attends their events…that’s a number one thing an artist needs to do to in order to get their art out in front and known—it’s really hard to just send work out cold to a gallery or curator.” “If there are grants…[artists] should definitely apply for those. In most cases those grants are reviewed by a peer panel, or of professionals who are either curators or critics; therefore it’s getting in front of exactly the people you want.” “Travel. Make sure that you know what’s happening in the rest of the United States, or your region, and around the world.” “Find other artists to be able to talk to. When artists are in art school, they have a support base that will critique them. But what happens after graduation, is that artists are in their studio all alone, there’s no one to talk to, no one to get that critical feedback from. So it’s important to also build up a network of artists one respects and have that kind of critical dialogue.” Curatorial Decisions“I can tell you almost exclusively, any artist whose work I’ve been interested in, it’s the work that’s attracted me first…I could see in the work that there is something about it that is true, that’s compelling, that is bringing a new way to think about things and is making me want to think about it.” “After I meet with the artist, I do want to have a sense that there is enough in them to carry a career. That what they’re trying to do is so expansive and multi-faceted that they won’t get stuck in one idea that they’ll be repeating for the rest of their career.” Artist-Collector Connections“It is interesting to hear why collectors collect, why they’re passionate, what they’ve learned… it’s important for artists to hear how their work is perceived beyond their own studio.” “There’s all kinds of collectors. There’s those that in one aspect that they like the story. They like to know what the background of the artist and how that plays out in their work…” Beyond Insta-Influencers“The influencers in technology are still shaping the perception of
Jan 11, 2019
Leverage Your Non-Art Expertise for a Career Blueprint
01:15:30
Kristin Levier is a sculptor and a 2018 Executive Fellow with CHF’s Art-Business Accelerator Program. After two decades as a molecular biologist, she became a full-time studio-artist 13 years ago. As a wood sculptor, Kristin makes work at the intersection of art and science that connects us to the “extraordinary, strange beauty of the natural world.” In this episode, she discusses how she developed her brand story, noticed trends in the art world, and found the audience for her work—all with the support of a network of like-minded artists. Crossing the Bridge Between Science and Art“My brand story is that I’m trying, with every single object that I make, to create work that’s at the interface of art and science. I think I’m opposed to this idea that people can only be right-brain dominant or left-brain dominant, and science and art are two separate worlds. I feel like there’s so many commonalities and there is just such a strong intersection.” “I think it is fairly uncommon, but I know a handful of artists who are coming out of tech backgrounds or lab research like I was involved in, or fields like mathematics.There maybe just isn’t enough of it that people think of it as a common thing. I’m trying to break that stereotype, hopefully, in the things that I do.” “I think anything that helps to refocus and feel grateful and amazed by these incredible things surrounding us on the planet… I hope that’s a great thing. [They are] certainly reminders that I like to have in my life.” Finding My Audience and Brand Story“I was noticing that I keep getting into these exhibitions—things focused on wood—and I just thought, if I’m ever going to move on, I need to apply to things where people haven’t heard of me.” “If you’re going to be able to talk about the brand of your work, it means you pretty much need to understand it. And so for me at the beginning […] I was just making whatever was sort of a whim for me. And then I started noticing trends. And then it got to the point where I really had a story I wanted to tell.” “The majority of people who buy my work tend to be scientists, medical doctors, or chiropractors—certainly also just art-focused people—but for some reason I thought, ‘well okay, they buy that’, and thinking ‘oh, maybe they have the money to buy art…’ But then you know, really slowing down and taking note: That IS my audience.” Connecting with Communities and Other Artists“The reason I started posting process photos [on Instagram] is because I noticed how much I love seeing process photos from other artists, from painters or other sculptors, seeing the thing when it’s kind of a mess and it’s not done yet.” “I realized that there was a real hole missing where I lived. There really weren’t people talking about the business side of being an artist. […] So I was just brave: ‘Okay I’m going to do it’.” “I definitely find that having other artists that I talk with often seems really important to me. I think you know that what we’re doing is difficult. I mean everybody has difficulties, but it’s really nice to know that you have someone going through the things you’re going through…so we can support each other and help each other problem-solve.” What I Got From CHF’s Art-Business Accelerator“It’s funny hearing you say the word ‘team,’ because after spending nearly two years together, I think we kind of feel like a family. It’s been amazing for me to be in this group with other artists and other people at CHF. I think people are very vulnerable and very honest with each other, which to me is the best way that interactions like that can work.” ”Now I really only buy exactly what I need. And I don’t know why that simple monthly [profit and loss] statement has made that change [in behavior] for me, but it did, and I’ve saved a ton of money. Knowing what you’re doing is a very powerful thing.” “Now I really understand that marketing is just getting whatever it is that you make or do out into the world, and then the...
Dec 04, 2018
Get Your Art Into Hotels and Corporate Spaces
01:01:58
Rachel Berg is a New York City-based Art Advisor. She is the director of curation at Museum Editions, which specializes in placing art in hotels, restaurants, and corporate environments. She’s also president of Live Artfully, their in-house atelier for custom artwork. Rachel has a visual arts degree from Princeton and a master’s of art and art education from Columbia. An artist herself, Rachel enjoys the collaboration process and is committed to good relationships with artists, as well as transparency in art-licensing projects. In this episode, Rachel discusses how she selects art; works with hotel architects, designers, and vendors; and how artists can navigate the process. The Art of Art Advising“What you have to look for when you’re working with art consultant, is a culture that is there to protect the artist and make sure that the artwork has its integrity intact when it gets to its end…” “Museum Editions works whichever way the artist and art works, because it’s our incentive to make a beautiful space. It’s our incentive to help the designers fulfill their vision.” “As curator, what I like to do is go through and give the artist an idea of which pieces, in what they have submitted—in my and my team’s opinion—would have the most success with our clientele.” “Existing work is always our first choice because it’s there, it needs to find a home. Bespoke commissions happen when all the stars don’t line up—maybe it’s the wrong size, maybe it’s the wrong price, maybe it’s the wrong color...so really bespoke comes from the need for a specific piece.” “What we are looking for [in artist’s branding and marketing materials] are good quality images that we can pass on to clients, and a solid understanding of what the creation process is, what the materials are, and what the sizing is. It’s really that simple.” The Shift of the Marketplace“I think artists really were protective of their image 15 years ago, whereas now, everyone’s trying to get their image out. You will definitely want it to be available in a hotel when people are Instagramming and are in front of your artwork and can tag you.” “This industry is an excellent way to continue selling your work. Hotels change their artwork every 7 years at minimum. So they’re always moving. It’s a booming industry, it’s going to keep going, and they’re always interested in cutting-edge work.” “The good news is I’ve been doing this long enough to say with confidence that even if you’re not hot right now, you will be soon. Because the industry, especially the boutique design industry, is very driven by trends.” Visualizing the Experience“If it is thoughtful, it is fine art.” “Give yourself limitations [for multiple editions of your work]. Say: for “up to 500 prints, this is X price.” Or negotiate that and be aware of your terms when you’re working. There are not so many terms to go over that it’s that complicated to set a limit.” “Make sure you’re always retaining the rights to the work. If someone is asking you to sign the rights, there’s a problem. Because we are asking permission to use it; not to own it.” “There is an understanding now that there is a social media piece to the story for the brand of the hotel, and even in corporate cases now we’re seeing more and more of the story. The selection committee is consulting with their branding; they’re making sure the artwork is fitting with the story of who they are.”
Nov 07, 2018
Identify Pivotal Opportunities for Business Growth
47:52
Nadia Fairlamb is a sculptor who works with wood and mirror glass, and she also teaches art to young people through various educational programs in Hawaii, where she is based. Her work speaks to the integral link between culture and environment, and she carries that focus into the business side of her practice as well, collaborating with designers and hospitality managers to infuse her community with art. In 2017, she won a CHF Business Accelerator Fellowship, and this year she progressed to the next level of the program, as an Executive Fellow. In this episode, Nadia talks about her impressive trajectory, and how her focus on art-entrepreneurship boosted not only her career but her creativity as well. The Journey to Becoming a Profitable Artist"I decided that the only way I could be profitable with my business is if I tried. In other words, for about three years I gave up almost all other work to see if I could become a full-time professional artist." "I started by trial and error, by putting myself physically at different art shows, craft fairs, events, things like that, for several years to test out my product, to meet a lot of different kinds of people, and to see what could be bought and what people were wanting to buy." "I am now very picky about who I choose to donate to and why. However, when I first started, five, six, seven years ago, I wasn't picky. I took as many different opportunities as I could to have my work seen and shown in front of different audiences. That was until I decided, until I figured out, who my target audiences were." I Run a Business, and My Business is Art"The first thing I did was figure out where and who my ideal interior designers, decorators, art dealers would be, and then once I figured that out, I put together a professional booklet, like a portfolio, of my work that I wanted to showcase for them." "I consider myself a business owner, and my business is art. So I know that I'm running a business, and every artist that I know that's making money is doing it the same way.” "Selling art is really putting oneself in a really vulnerable place. Because it's not like you're selling a toothbrush or a hamburger. You're selling something that’s part of yourself." "I have a company and my business name and my LLC, and that so far has been my brand. And it no longer really fits what I do and who I am as an artist. I'm wanting to shift from ‘This is my business’ to ‘This is me and this is what I make.’” What I Learned From CHF's Accelerator Program"Honestly, I wasn't trained to think like a business person—at all. I had very limited training in what it takes to get a business off the ground and get it going.” "I feel like I'm taking away [...] a level of confidence that I was really needing and really wanted to have. Not just about making money but about myself, and confidence about the work that I make as a fine artist." “My biggest hurdle has been the self-confidence to raise my prices and ask for those prices, and then get paid for the price point that I want to get paid for. That's really just a self-confidence thing that has been solved through repetition, persistence, and action."
Oct 02, 2018
Generate Powerful Publicity: A Sistine Chapel Mindset
55:48
Todd Scalise is the founder and CEO of http://higherglyphics.com/ (Higherglyphics), a creative placemaking firm that manages large-scale public art projects from start to finish: funding, art, design, construction, and merchandising. An artist himself, he knows the importance of generating publicity and brand awareness. In this 55-minute episode, he discusses the enormous economic contribution that artists bring to their communities, framing art as a service that's worth funding and publicizing. How Art Benefits the Community"In 2012, arts and culture production contributed over $698 billion to the US economy, which is about 4.3% of the US gross domestic product." "It's a statistical fact that public art (creative placemaking) attracts potential investors in business to communities." "Property values did go up slightly, but also occupancy rates went up dramatically around these environments." "I learned to look at the return on investment aspect of the Sistine Chapel ceiling---I don't know what Michelangelo got paid, but he certainly did not get paid enough." How to Approach Project-based Art"If you want to start doing public work, you have to start seeing it as a service first, which is consulting." "What switched for me was I began considering my audience at some point, not just what I wanted to make." "Other considerations that go into these projects---that probably don't go into creating studio art---are a division of labor, systems of logic, some level of incorporation, insurances, and working to budget." "With a client, it's a collaborative process, and they have to be brought into that process. Otherwise they don't feel that they're part of it." Publicity for Artists"Whenever you have commerce, you have the need for publicity." "Publicity is really putting your message out there in a very unique way, so that people pay attention." "To me, publicity is a very creative act, and I think I remember Andy Warhol saying, 'business is art.' Well, you know, 'publicity is art' as well." "Repetition is boring, and people forget that eventually. That's the problem with traditional marketing, with the billboard concept. "Focus on your audience, not yourself." "The tipping point in my business was being able to educate people about why what I'm doing is different."
Aug 16, 2018
Leverage Your Creative Skills to Improve Your Finances
45:59
Is it realistic for artists to think "One day, I'll retire"? Christina Empedocles knows about the financial concerns of artists. A working artist represented by several San Francisco-based galleries, Christina also runs https://www.insightpersonalfinance.com/ (Insight Personal Finance), a company that aims to improve the financial health of creative entrepreneurs. In this episode, Christina acknowledges the financial hurdles that artists face--fluctuating income, being responsible for your own raise, lack of benefits---and provides specific strategies that artists have successfully employed to overcome them. Overcome Mental Hurdles About Money"There’s a lot of baggage around art and money, so a lot of people have a hard time looking at what they make, and think 'I should be making more.'" "What first established your relationship with money? It can be really be powerful to think about, and help eliminate engrained money behavior that isn’t working for us." "When you’re doing this yourself, you have to pull all the levers and it can feel like a burden. But the best time to get started is now; the sooner you start building this structure, it lowers the risk of your creative practice." "I started teaching myself finance. I started to realize we [artists] were doing it wrong: a lot of people in the community wanted to avoid dealing with their money." Financial Planning for Artists"Artists are great at having the long view. We have big visions, and the vision of what we want to accomplish carries us through the fluctuations of our career." "Your art practice will change; it’s absolutely necessary to plan for it. I don’t want to hustle to find rent money when I’m 80!" "Artists and entrepreneurs tend to invest everything back into the business, not in the future. I see that as taking on more risk." "Don’t just reinvest in the art practice. If you want to have agency over the work, you have to become immaculate with money." "If we don’t think about inflation and just working without increasing our prices, after a few years, the impact of inflation is immediate and painful." Strategies for Financial Health"Look at ways to increase income every year; look at all of your skills and think 'How am I using them?'" "Align your spending with your values, and reroute the money that you save toward your goals." "There are so many money leaks we may not know are there until we start paying attention. Bad habits can be huge drains on our ability to save; we look at the opportunity costs to see what that money can do." "The worst that can happen from preparing is having a chunk of money for your future self!"
Jun 25, 2018
Build a Brand That Gets a Response
55:27
Building a brand means creating an expectation and giving your audience a chance to anticipate and desire what you’re making. We cover a lot of ground in this episode with https://www.cgu.edu/people/jenny-darroch/ (Dr. Jenny Darroch), dean of the Drucker School of Management at Claremont Graduate University. Jenny gives us a 30,000-foot-view of the art world, as well as the issues facing those who aim to bridge art and business. Host Daniel DiGriz and Jenny discuss the brand development challenges that visual artists face, tackling the question: “Do I define my brand, or do I let my brand evolve?”, as well as the principles of marketing, project management, keeping up with a changing market, and connecting with an audience. Check out the highlights below, and then download or stream the full hour-long episode. On Strategic Audience Development:"If there’s an expectation of what modern art should look like, do you become one of the many who can produce art of that kind, or do you make a bold statement and actually redefine how we look at contemporary art today?" "No matter what the creative form is, we always play that game: by evolving, we can pick up new customers, but we can also alienate the old." "You’ve got this conundrum of audience development that can alienate the core audience...we need to be tuned into the market, but we need to pay attention to what’s new, and what’s possible." The Core of Art Business Education:"We demystify the art world---education provides empowerment and puts people in a far stronger position." "The humanistic approach that we [in management] take does resonate with those in the arts community." "We see management as a liberal art, and that management revolves around the human condition." On Fostering Leadership in the Arts:"Artists tackle issues that relate to society at large---the dysfunction that we see around us, the lack of purpose people have---and these values are really aligned with Peter Drucker’s values." "The thing that trips students up the most is embracing that a commercial approach to art is OK." The big picture issue "that faces both museums and visual artists is about audience development and engagement." "Learning is lifelong, and we can dip in and out of education at any point in our life." On Brand Management:"When you’re trying to create your own brand, if you want to be commercially successful, you do need to hustle to be known in different art circles." "When you embark upon a program of audience development, you can end up confusing the brand...how does the brand maneuver and evolve as the audience expands?" "Look across all forms of creative expression---there’s an abundance of product on the market and so many different ways to distribute the product to end users, so to be 'good enough' is not enough."
May 12, 2018
How Creative Entrepreneurs Build Investment Capital
41:17
Alice Loy is the co-founder and CEO of http://creativestartups.org/ (Creative Startups), an accelerator program with a presence in the US, the Middle East, and Asia. An expert in the creative economy, she recognizes that creative entrepreneurs are an undeniable force in the business world, and offers unique insights into founding and funding a growing startup. In this episode, Alice tells us about navigating the hurdles that all entrepreneurs face, identifying investment opportunities in the creative economy, and what convinced the Creative Startups team that https://meowwolf.com/ (Meow Wolf) was going to be a success. Creatives Change the Business World:“Creatives can, and should, own the companies that creatives work at---creative people are uniquely suited to understand opportunities and problems and therefore develop solutions for market opportunities.” "Society has thought of artists as people who either work on their own, or get a job at a company, and we question that assumption." "Creative entrepreneurs have the unique ability to build a more compassionate and sustainable world." "A lot of startup glory goes to tech, but as creatives, we need to say ‘this is ours, and this is how we run a company’." Build Investment Capital as an Entrepreneur:"Most investors tend to write creatives off as artists who probably can’t figure out how to run a business, and that’s because most investors are people who follow the herd." “Now we have Kickstarter and Indiegogo and other platforms that have changed where creatives can go to raise money for an early stockpile of capital to get going.” "There is a rising awareness about untapped opportunities for investors who are looking at markets in different ways, which will mean more dollars for creatives." Become a Viable Investment:Entrepreneurs "pose a risk and an opportunity to the network. If you perform well, you take that risk off the table and now you have a partner." "Meow Wolf came to our Accelerator in 2014...they had a track record and a team of founders—having a team makes all the difference in the world." "At the end of the day, entrepreneurship is not about ideas, it’s about getting the job done."
Apr 17, 2018
Do Art Fairs Pay Off?
48:36
Do working artists need art fairs, even after securing representation? An artist himself, http://www.raybeldner.com/ (Ray Beldner) explains the decision-making processes of developing https://www.startupartfair.com/ (stARTup Art Fair), as well as the important considerations for artists participating in any fair. In addition to running an impromptu cost-benefit analysis of art fair attendance, Ray and Podcast Host Daniel DiGriz discuss how to take the reigns and control your own career, the complexities of online selling, and the importance of a multi-pronged sales approach. Check out the show's highlights below, and then listen to the full 45-minute episode. How Do Artists Benefit From Fairs?“Having one-on-one face time with an artist is what the viewer wants, it’s a good way to sell art and look at art.” “Fairs are a great place to test ideas, to test your market, to learn how to make sales.” "You learn how to gauge interest, how to read buyers, close a sale, and how other artists pitch themselves and present their work---it can be an incredible learning experience, and profitable." "If you want to reach the most amount of people with your work---curators, dealers, buyers---a fair is one of the best way to do it." On Understanding and Controlling Your Own Business“Artists are business people---what happens in the artist/gallery relationship is that artists cede their control and, in so doing, become infantilized and dependent on the dealer.” “If you want to continuously grow your business, you have to grow your network of partners.” “Dealers are partners, and you can have many partners in different regions.” "It’s important that artists stop thinking of themselves by the old model---that only the dealer takes care of the artist." "Galleries come and go, but in the end, if you don’t think of yourself as a business then you won’t understand the critical concept of making a career as an artist." On Sales Strategy"You need a multi-pronged approach to create a vibrant business, and one prong doesn’t hurt the other; they can actually support each other well." “The move is away from brick-and-mortar galleries and toward something that’s event-driven and supported by an online component.” “A lot of traditional venues for artists have been failing or falling away. The internet has made everything more transparent and given artists tools to promote themselves online as well as off.” “You have to control setting the sales goals and building your team---that concept is empowering to artists.”
Mar 26, 2018
How to Grow Your Customer Base and Increase Sales
01:00:59
https://clarkhulingsfund.org/finalists/steve-pruneau/ (Steve Pruneau) serves as the Chairman of CHF's Board and is the founder of http://freeagentsource.com/ (Free Agent Source Inc.), a management consulting company that applies sharing-economy principles to client engagements. In this episode, he and host Daniel DiGriz discuss how to use the 'best practices' employed by successful entrepreneurs. If you’re struggling to identify the next step in your business, or find direct-to-audience selling a challenge, you’ll find this episode illuminating. Read on for highlights, and download the hour-long episode now to enjoy this conversation in full.  Sales Myths and Realities:"Selling is finding a solution for someone---a solution that they welcome into their lives." "Most people come to organizations like CHF because they get it: they need to grow an audience, and they want to know how." "The bottom line is, https://clarkhulingsfund.org/sales-increase-art-income/ (sales get done) on that emotional sense of confidence we inspire with our audience." "My emotional hang-up was this myth that people are natural salespeople, which put a dependency in my life. In modern life, survival skills include selling." "The last step of the journey is acknowledging 'ok, now I get how to employ these techniques and grow my audience'---that’s when the thriving starts to happen." Direct-to-audience selling “gives you a way to influence and control how you’re presenting yourself to the world." Engage to Develop Your Customer Base:"There’s always an opportunity to engage…questions will start to illustrate patterns with the people who are buying your art and with those who aren’t buying your art." "In the art world, we’re looking for our people, who feel something from the art and find the work meaningful." "I don’t believe there are stories out there of somebody just going viral---there's a backstory of someone doing the work, developing the story, asking the questions, finding a pattern, and using that work to grow the audience or customer base." Identify Milestones to Move Past Uncertainty:"Shift out of the concept of ‘I’m working on this’ to ‘this is really done’." "If you don’t know the solution, break the problem down into the things that you do know, and point out the steps that you don’t know." "Follow your instincts and pay attention to programs like CHF, which are going to put you in a mindset to stand your ground, look after yourself, and understand clearly what you want to accomplish." "For an artist, we’re looking for a verifiable, completed task, as well as a focus that drives momentum." "Preparing an IGP clarifies the mind so now you’re starting to focus on what’s consistent with your goals." "It doesn’t matter what your art is, if your intention is to earn a living from it and thrive in your art, that proposal will help you figure out how you’re going to get there.”
Feb 19, 2018
Engage New Sales Avenues to Increase Art Income
43:13
https://www.aaronlauxdesign.com/ (Aaron Laux) is an artist who makes 100% of his income from his art—a rarity in the profession. In this episode, Aaron and podcast host Daniel DiGriz discuss Aaron’s business model and the https://clarkhulingsfund.org/accelerator/ (Business Accelerator Program). A recent graduate of the fellowship’s first year, Aaron explains how he expanded his business to explore and utilize more avenues of sale. Listen to the 45-minute episode for Aaron’s ideas on the new and emerging art world models that favor working artists. On Accelerator and Business Development“Being able to wear two different hats and switch back and forth between different ways of thinking—it’s something that I wasn’t doing when I was young; I was more focused on the art and the adventure.” “What’s been great about this whole process is creating a momentum which involves all of the Fellows, and the ongoing evolution of business concepts.” “My goals have evolved. I was at a transition point, and Accelerator pointed me in the direction of other avenues of sale and different approaches; from working with galleries, to commissions, to e-commerce.” “I realized I can revisit this project I was working on six years ago—to build a solar photovoltaic sculpture that’s functional, but also aesthetically beautiful—I have the skills I need to create this project and make an Investment-Grade Proposal to find commission or investors for it.” “The Accelerator program has broadened my mind to how my art is relevant and how I can make money from it.” New Models in the Arts“There are ways to give clients more choices, to commission art that they want.” “Collectors aren’t buying the same way that they used to; they’re not buying at shows, but we’re seeing new art fairs and a status quo in terms of how fairs are run. If organizers employed a shared-risk approach, I think we’d see much more creativity in how these shows are put together.” “I do like the concept of Community Supported Art Projects generally, in that putting up initial funds could help create a steady cash flow for artists.” “Being able to talk directly with your potential clients is huge; I’ve learned a lot by starting out with art fairs, but fairs that share the risk more evenly offer a model that’s more artist-friendly.” On Keeping Perspective as a Working Artist“Surviving as an artist is a big deal. I’ve definitely felt like I’ve had to quit at moments, but with tenacity and support of loved ones, something always comes up.” “The world of corporate and public art commissions is very competitive—before, I wasn’t even playing the game—now I’m in the game.” “It’s been an evolution to be a professional artist, and it’s taken me a long time to get here….I’m coming around to really seeing this as not only what I do, but my lifestyle and my income.”
Feb 04, 2018
Identify Product-Market Fit for Entrepreneurial Success
46:10
Arree Chung is an author, illustrator, designer and art director in the gaming industry, and founder of https://www.storytelleracademy.com/ (Storyteller Academy). In this episode, Arree and Daniel discuss a storytelling approach to branding, how to build one business that leverages another, and how Arree navigated failures and big breaks to become an illustrator and entrepreneur. Use the resources that fit your needs:“In today’s world, you can study on YouTube, but you’re looking for the best information, and for the thriving community that supports you, so you grow together.” “The things that art school doesn’t prepare you for? I’d say it’s really business and marketing—I have so many friends that are artists and they all say that they wished they learned more business.” “The best way to learn business is to start doing it.” “We’re taught to get jobs, but not how to start a business or be entrepreneurial.” “The truth of business is that you not only need a great service or product, but you need a marketing machine that gets you out there and gets awareness. You have to have a process of making sales, consistently.” On market research and branding:“I have always kept the rights to all my art, and at some point those can be licensed—you can grow a licensing strategy from the artwork that you make.” “Most artists want to focus on making art, but if you don’t focus on your channels 50% of the time, you’re not going to get enough traffic to close sales.” “Do things fast and experiment.” “A business plan is a roadmap, but you need to make sure it’s not just untested numbers on a spreadsheet.” “Ask your customer what their needs are, build solutions around that, and develop your business plan from those needs.” How failure can condition you for success:“I learned about product/market fit—I thought there was a great business opportunity, but I learned otherwise by being in the market.” “In retrospect, I’ve learned the value of marketing and how to reach your target audience. I think my first business could have worked if I had more marketing experience and knew how to target customers better.” “One mistake I made is to try to develop too many [social] channels at the same time, and didn’t do a good job with any of them.” “Building a business is a lot of work, but it’s also a creative endeavor.”
Jan 21, 2018
The Learned Skills of Successful Entrepreneurs
56:37
John Furth is the CEO of the advisory group Furth & Associates. A consultant for over 26 years, he has held senior positions as the head of strategy groups at Hitachi Consulting, Discovery Communications and Sony Corporation. John is also author of a forthcoming book, Fearless Disruption: A Guide to the New Realities of Business and Leadership in the 21st Century. This show’s topics include: Evolution of the CEO:“There has been a shift, and with that shift business people have learned that the softer side of life plays a huge role in non-success and success–that’s become a much more prominent part of business in the last 40 years.” “What makes a great leader, great CEO, a great artist—the common thread is that they are committed to continuous learning. They’re on a mission to not let themselves get blindsided by things they don’t know.” “Successful people say ‘Yeah, I failed, but I did learn, and this is how I’ll apply it to the next thing I do.'” “You have to disrupt your mindset—a belief can get in the way of your growth.” Assessing Business Effectiveness:“You listen to the stories the CEO and his team are constructing as they go along, and you’re listening for things that don’t make sense: mindset issues, beliefs about business that are either not logical or not true.” “When is it time to hire a Chief Marketing Officer, or expand a portfolio of products? That’s part of growth and decision-making—that’s a learned skill, and it’s hard to do that without a mentor or group of people that can help you navigate your decision-making.” “The number one reason why a company fails is very simple—they run out of money. You have to be financially secure, in any situation, to build and grow.” “The key skill set that a business person needs to have is the ability to get insights and to learn, and not just be comfortable with a few data points.” Identify What You Want:“A lot of people come to me when they have found that somehow, it’s not working the way they thought it would, and it’s because they’re actually not clear on what it is they’re trying to achieve.” “The most powerful thing for someone trying to start something—be it an artist or building a company—you have to know and be really clear about what exactly it is you want. You get what you want, and if you don’t know what you want, you don’t get anything.” “The difference between someone who’s successful and less successful is their ability to identity what they want, and take steps to get there.” “You really do need to navigate growth and understand what’s going to come next—the challenge for young entrepreneurs is they do not know what they don’t know.”
Dec 23, 2017
What Independent Publishing Can Teach Visual Artists
54:44
Eric is the Chairman, Publisher, and CEO of Streamline Publishing, Inc. which publishes http://www.fineartconnoisseur.com/ (Fine Art Connoisseur) and http://www.pleinaircollector.com/ (PleinAir) Magazine. A career entrepreneur, Eric has 30 years’ experience launching companies and media brands, as well as a decade in the art industry, working with collectors and organizing art conventions. In this episode, Eric discusses the difference between digital and analogue consumption of art, how to meet the needs of the market while staying true to your vision, and advice for artists navigating the gallery world. Here are a few highlights: On weathering art market changes:“I believe that the Masters of today who are still relatively young—the http://grandcentralatelier.org/jacob-collins.php (Jacob Collins)’ and http://grandcentralacademy.classicist.org/parrish.html (Grayden Parrish)’s and people of that ilk—they’ll see a surge in pricing in their paintings. Younger people following in their footsteps will have thriving careers in their lifetime. This movement is driven by doing something different and not being part of the mainstream.” “We’re getting a sense of something from young folks who say ‘I don’t get this modern or abstract stuff’—to them, this resurgence of Old Masters style has become new and fresh. They are criticized for doing something considered avant garde and almost wrong, yet it’s the exact thing that happened when representational painting came out.” “The rise of ateliers—and the resurgence of Figurative Art—shows that these people needed a home and chance to be together, to realize that people all over the world were interested in this.” The strengths of digital and analog:“When you look at a digital picture of a piece of art on your Instagram feed, it looks good, but it doesn’t look nearly as good as when you see it in print, which of course doesn’t look nearly as good as when you see it in person. This is one of the big challenges, because we need to get people out there looking at art in person.” “I can do things with digital that I can’t do with print—in our digital edition we have 15-20 additional pages that we don’t do in print, because it’s very expensive. So we give digital subscribers more content, and it’s a beautiful thing to be able to do that.” “Everything we’re doing today digitally will be old tomorrow. There will be something completely different and new in two, five, or ten—someone will invent something to completely disrupt things, and as an artist, you have to play all the angles.” “I have a friend who buys all his art on an auction site—I don’t know if he’s ever set foot in an art gallery. But I also know people who will not buy a piece of art until they can see it in person.” “Buyers today wants to be able to research, they want to read about the artist online—so I don’t want anybody else in charge of my brand.” On marketing and business management:“My motto when we started the businesses, is that I would never do anything that I didn’t love.” “The galleries that are failing are the ones that aren’t being contemporary in how to operate businesses.” “I think the slippery slope with marketing is it can accomplish anything except for good painting—we’ve all seen artists who make so much money and we don’t understand why they’re succeeding because we don’t respect the art that they’re making. Marketing can in fact accomplish selling bad stuff.” “The problem is there’s this belief that if you put it online, you’ll sell a lot of art, but it’s not true. You can’t put everything on a single pillar.” “One has to focus on strategy instead of tactic: tactic is the thing you’re going to do, strategy is the plan of how you’ll get respect, get well-known and get people to buy your work.” “People want to do things the way they used to do them, and are not doing the things that got them success in the first place. In hard times, people cut...
Dec 12, 2017
Why Are You Working for Free? Examining Arts Labor
01:38:31
http://www.alexisclements.com/ (Alexis Clements) is a Brooklyn-based artist, journalist and documentary filmmaker. Her writing has appeared in https://lareviewofbooks.org/contributor/alexis-clements/ (The Los Angeles Review of Books), Salon, Bitch Magazine, The Brooklyn Rail, The Guardian, Nature, and she is a regular contributor to https://hyperallergic.com/author/alexis-clements/ (Hyperallergic). She has led workshops and moderated panels exploring labor issues within the arts. In this episode, Alexis and podcast host Daniel DiGriz discuss the economic realities of arts labor. Alexis provides a careful and nuanced examination of the forces impacting payment for visual artists, organizing efforts in the US and beyond, and philanthropy in the arts. The myths about how artists make money:“There’s an enormous amount of shame around money, particularly when people aren’t earning a lot of it, and there’s shame around excess money—in the art world, you have both groups meeting up against each other: at the top you have people spending huge sums of money to purchase artwork, and at the bottom, people are ashamed to talk about money because they think they’re the only ones not making any.” “The art market is intensely unstable and variable for an individual artist—the stats about ‘the good years’ in terms of making money over the course of a career puts it at 2.2 out of 16 years. That’s how it works—you don’t get career retrospectives at MoMA every year, you get one.” “The artist’s income is incredibly variable, so you have to have something that builds stability, even if you’re the 1% artist–even for those artists, there’s instability.” “I just gave a talk where I mentioned the two primary myths of success in the arts. One: ‘In order to be successful I must make all of my money off of my creative output alone’, and two: ‘I should spend all my time on my creative output.’ Those are complete myths.” “Artists are trying to access the data and find out what the earnings are for artists—‘how much income is derived from creative work?’ is a particularly thorny question.” “There is a shame around making money off of swag or reproductions or something else that isn’t art—but that is making money off of art.” The realities of funding in the arts:“Art is unpredictable, the kind of content that we really crave and want in art is often very provocative, and funders in the nonprofit space are excruciatingly risk-averse…this makes it very difficult for artists to access money to generate genuinely provocative work.” “Some great models I’ve seen in terms of philanthropy are people pooling resources together rather than individual funders, because the nonprofit system in the US—like the visual arts marketplace—encourages nonprofits and funders to think of each other as competition and that they need to put their personal mark on things.” “People have been trying to get rid of the NEA [National Endowment for the Arts] for a really long time….I hope everyone listening to this knows that when there are right-leaning people in power, the discussion becomes ‘let’s defund the NEA’—it’s an annual tradition.” “People respond to art because it’s insightful or mixes things up in exciting ways and most humans understand that it’s a form of innovation and it’s part of what makes art so important to our culture—what has happened is the proliferation of the ‘creative economy’ has cheapened the understanding of what creativity really is.” On organizing for visual artists:“Artists are a constituency; by collaborating and communicating and by participating in professional organizations for your field, you are becoming an important body politic that can influence change.” “By aligning with other workers, you have a better sense of how you can actually affect change that will benefit you.” “What we’re talking about is solidarity—it’s very unlikely that artists will change legislation
Nov 09, 2017
How to Collaborate with Museums
56:21
Seth Hopkins is the Executive Director of the http://boothmuseum.org/ (Booth Western Art Museum) in Cartersville, GA. In this episode, Seth and podcast host Daniel DiGriz discuss how artists get involved with museums—securing shows and becoming part of the permanent collection—as well as catching the curator’s eye and boosting an art career. See below for highlights, and listen to the hour-long show for a detailed look at museum collaboration. The Economics of Promoting Living Artists:“We push the boundaries of Western art and expose our audience to new artists they may not be aware of, and balance that with more familiar artists.” “An Ansel Adams show creates fast growth of our membership, which gives way to shows by other artists.” “https://zoeurnessphoto.com/ (Zoe Urness) shot some very provocative images at the Standing Rock protest, one of which was considered for a Pulitzer, and this will be the first museum show of her work—that’s the bookend to an Ansel Adams show.” “We can make the market bigger so that more artists can make a living.” Collaboration and Relationship-building:“Art is a cool business—it’s the only one I know where the customer often buys dinner.” “With a new show, it’s as often our idea as it is a gallery owner’s suggestion, an artist who contacts us directly, a collector—the ideas can come from anywhere.” “Gallery friends are important to us, to introduce us to collectors and new artists.” “I tell the galleries, ‘you should help us find these collectors and help us network with them’ because the end result is they help us buy more, and better, art.” Advice for Artists“If you’ve expressed interest in working with the museum, that’s plenty, and we’ve had shows that have developed in that very way.” “If you don’t go into art with tenacity from the beginning, I don’t see how you’re going to make it.” When contacting a museum, “you don’t have to be passive, but you don’t want to be a nuisance.” “The artists that galleries end up adding are very good, and fit the gallery profile—the artist has done their homework, can say how they see themselves fitting with that gallery, and they’ve created some of their own market.”
Oct 27, 2017
Best Practices to Engage With Curators
48:09
Dr. Catherine Futter is the Director of Curatorial Affairs at https://nelson-atkins.org/ (Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art) in Kansas City. Starting her career as a decorative arts curator, she now focuses on contemporary art, and projects that explore how visitors participate with works of art. Catherine provides listeners with an in-depth look at the ways artists and curators execute an exhibition, and what it’s like to work with a museum curator. Listen to the episode and https://itunes.apple.com/gb/podcast/the-thriving-artist-podcast/id1025268152?mt=2 (leave a review) to let us know what you think.  Initiating the exhibition:“Something sparks your interest, you find an artist who touches a nerve. There’s something about the work that you want to show to the public, that will open the visitor’s eyes and make them see the world in different ways.” “It’s about having the conversation: ‘are you still following this path, is there something you’ve always wanted to try?’—it’s those conversations that lead us to the exhibition.” “There’s that excitement of seeing work you’ve never seen before, and working with an artist who is pushing their work in new directions with something they’ve always wanted to try.” Taking care with relationships:“I think our entire field is about personal relationships. A collector, intellectually, gives a piece to a museum, and yet they give it because of the relationship with the director, the curator, or the conservator.” “That’s what I would miss if I stopped curating—working with living artists, and those conversations that open my mind about what art can be, what our lives can be, and how our lives can be transformed.” “If there’s an artist with work that doesn’t quite fit with the museum, we can still tell collectors, ‘This is somebody I think we should all be watching.’ And that can take you different places—relationships are so important.” The curator-artist exchange:“I met with http://www.claretwomey.com/ (Claire Twomey) on a project, we sat at her table playing with plastic cups and paper, had a fantastic conversation and it moved the project forward.” “The most disappointing studio visit was when I had been so excited by this one artist’s work, but the artist responded with: ‘just tell me the schedule, the budget, and the space.’ That’s not the way I like to work.” “I consider these projects that I’ve worked on an experimentation, in that we’re all working together to move an artist forward in the projects they want to do.“ Career-planning:“Project-oriented artists can be torn between if they should be in the marketplace with work that’s collectible, or whether the interaction with community is vital to their work. There’s that balance between wanting to do your work, and being able to survive while doing your work.“ “As a mentee, it has certainly furthered my career as I got insights into strategical thinking and strategic planning: if you want to get from point A to point D, what is your path going to be? Maybe it’s not a straight line.” “It’s not about sending curators slides or images of your work—that rarely goes anywhere. It’s exposure. Or it’s other curators saying ‘Hey, I met this person, maybe you’d like to work with them.’ We talk to each other all the time. Getting your work where it can be seen is very important.” Where the museums and the art market meet:“They’re not separate at all—the market and museum—there are galleries now where there’s very little work in the exhibition that’s for sale. They’re publishing books and ‘competing’ with museums. The lines are becoming blurrier and some of that is positive.“ “The art world has always been about commerce. We’re not an island by any means, we have to be alert to the changes of the art market.” “We think about how the collection will be valued—not necessarily monetarily—50 years in the future, because we’re not in the business of buying and selling...
Oct 02, 2017
How to Meet Stakeholder Demands
01:11:53
http://hollyvanhart.com/ (Holly Van Hart) is a visual artist based in Silicon Valley, and a Clark Hulings Fund https://clarkhulingsfund.org/accelerator/ (Business Accelerator Fellow). In this episode of the https://clarkhulingsfund.org/chfpodcast/ (Thriving Artist Podcast)™, Holly and Daniel discuss the ins and outs of building a sustainable business practice: deciding on the direction to take your business, standing out in the online marketplace, and how collaboration benefits a business plan. Navigate Strategically, Network Intelligently:“I sell my work through galleries and licensing, interior designers, and directly to buyers. With each of these, I get to know the players, which one is a match, and pay attention for when they’re ready to take on new artists.” “It’s important to stay connected with all the people in the art world you want to work with, but also other artists with similar tracks.” “With multiple artists, I’ll have phone calls to trade ideas, referrals, best practices—sharing specifics so I can learn from them in a way that’s beyond what I could read in a book—real life examples of what’s working today for individual artists who are on some track that’s similar to mine.” “Staying connected helps you stay accountable. It’s critical to keep these connections and keep learning from other people around us.” Marketing to Sales:“I have my plan written down and every day I’m looking at what needs to be done to advance the plan. I think ‘OK, what is the next step to get to the place I want to be.’” “I keep a sharp eye out for what seems to be working and what doesn’t so I can shift as needed from one thing to another, or come up with something new.” “There are millions of great artists in the world, you have to do something to get yourself above the noise of it all.” “I don’t mind letting people see the process and where I go wrong, that’s part of the creative process and what people are interested in.” “I had sales experience in the tech world, and you get used to hearing a lot of ‘no’s’ before you hear a ‘yes’, so I learned to roll with that.” Artist as Primary Stakeholder:“Artists have to be held accountable and produce measurable results—they have a client base to please.” If you make art as a hobby—which I did for many years—you can just make it and if it doesn’t sell, no worries. But if it’s your profession, you need to have a plan.” “As an artist you are creating your own career and business, it’s a blank slate you can write for yourself.” “The sky’s the limit no matter what you’re selling, that’s part of the opportunity and part of the challenge, because you can get distracted going down a path that doesn’t yield much. You need to find the right combination that works for you.” “You need multiple [revenue] channels: I love making original work more than taking the steps to sell prints, but getting your work out there in a broader way is good for everybody—for the artist and those who are selling the artist.”
Sep 08, 2017
Find the Best Representation for Your Art
36:56
http://stephaniebirdsall.com/ (Stephanie Birdsall) is a painter who has exhibited at the https://www.royalacademy.org.uk/exhibition/summer-exhibition-2017 (Royal Academy Summer Exhibition) in London and the http://www.nationalartsclub.org/ (National Arts Club) in New York. She has received over 60 awards in national and international juried exhibitions, including Best in Show at the http://discoverymuseum.org/ (Bridgeport Museum of Arts and Science), and her work is in the permanent collections of the http://www.evergladesmuseum.org/newsletters.aspx (Museum of the Everglades). When she isn’t traveling to paint en plein air, she teaches painting workshops and is the producer of two DVDs on painting. On Belonging to a Painting Group“When you’re around master painters, you can’t help but learn from them, but it’s really about putting in the miles, getting the work done.” “When Richard invited me to join the Putney Painters, that was a massive confidence boost because it meant that what I was doing was real.” “When you have support and people believe in what you’re doing—and that can come from a painting group—that makes a difference.” Finding the Right Representation“One thing I say to people who are just getting started: it’s really important to find the right gallery because galleries play to different collectors.” “People think galleries are becoming obsolete, but I love them because they’re an opportunity to see work in person that you don’t see online.” “I love my galleries and I love social media too, so I try to make them support each other.” “You need to be aware that galleries may not be selling you, so it’s important to find a gallery that your work looks like it belongs in.” Recognizing Business OpportunitiesTo make painting a viable business “you have to plan in advance: what shows you’ll be in, where you’ll submit, and you need to feed your galleries. I really look at it like a job.” “Someone approached me to teach a painting workshop and since then, I find that I’m becoming a better artist and teaching has made me a better painter.” “I was doing a demo for a vendor, another vendor asked me to teach at a convention and then people wanted to learn how to do what I do. I started to get invited to teach.” “As a true artist, one always wants to be open to learning, so if I can learn from someone else’s workshop, I’ll take it in a second.” On Success“In a perfect world all I would do is paint, but our society isn’t like that anymore. Things move so fast with social media, you have to keep on top of your business to stay in front of people.” “I see a lack of confidence standing in people’s way, they don’t trust what they’re thinking, they don’t trust what they’re painting, and as soon as they get a little confident I see a huge change.”
Aug 11, 2017
Translate Social Media to Sales
57:49
http://www.greggchadwick.com/Gregg_Chadwick/index.html (Gregg Chadwick) is a Santa Monica–based artist who has been painting for three decades, and his work has been exhibited in national and international galleries, art fairs, and museums. He’s given many lectures on the arts, including speaking engagements at UCLA and http://categoricallynot.com/ (Categorically Not)—a forum that examines the intersection of art and science. Gregg is also a Fellow in The Clark Hulings Fund’s https://clarkhulingsfund.org/accelerator/ (2017 Business Accelerator Program). Art and social justice:“All art has a political stance whether it’s on the surface or boiling underneath.” “Every day something new happens in the world and art is really primed to look at those global changes and shifts.” “The history of oil paintings is so deep that it allows artists to address issues with a very subtle touch.” Developing a virtual network:“If you’re in your studio by yourself, people aren’t going to come looking for you. If you’re on social media, you’re communicating globally, and there are things that can only happen in that forum.” “I’ve had a number of people contact me over the years looking for particular paintings that I’ve shown online, even if they were previous works on older platforms like Flickr.” Social media translates to sales:“Art dealers are on Twitter, and I like to create subject matter that, when it’s Googled, my name comes up.” “Social media allows you to sow the seeds of your work and who you are. People want to get to know you a little bit, who the artist is—it’s not just a product.” “The collectors who want to be connected to the artists are able to do that. That community and camaraderie is there. It makes me feel like I’ve accomplished something significant, and it drives me to keep going, to keep my audience happy.” CHF’s Accelerator and artist forums:“The difficult thing is putting thoughts into numbers, having an organized system that you’re continually using to propel your business from one level to another.” “The encouragement and enthusiasm from the [Accelerator] program and other Fellows has led us to have bigger dreams and bigger ideas that we now know can come to fruition.” “This is a group of like-minded individuals in which we can talk about our work and challenges together.”
Jun 08, 2017
On Selling Tools of the (Art) Trade
40:27
Ron Whitmore co-owns and operates https://www.artisansantafe.com/ (Artisan), an art-supply store that serves as a community hub for artists in its two locations—Santa Fe and Albuquerque. Ron also spearheads the largest https://www.expoartisan.com/ (artist material expo) in New Mexico, featuring more than 100 workshops, and is the host of https://santafe.com/thevoice/shows/art-fusion (Art Fusion), a radio show that brings together musicians and visual artists to talk about their creative processes. Building an Arts Community:“In the store, we have our own radio show. We’re giving artists press, offering yoga classes, art workshops. We have a life-drawing class and free demos. We offer services that are interesting to artists.” “Artists are sharing their knowledge with us in the store all the time. It makes shopping an experience instead of just getting the cheapest thing online.” “We run the materials expo every two years, we have stayed with it and have relationships with all these manufacturers, most of whom are friends.” Marketing Art Online:“The digital age has changed the way artists are marketing their work here. Some of them are doing it very successfully. They have pulled out of galleries. They’re selling it directly and getting 100% of the commission.” “The whole gallery scene has changed, and the way artists are marketing their work has changed.” “Artists are marketing themselves on Facebook. They have sales models on their website. They can sell and ship through that.” “Since there’s more self-marketing, artists need business savvy to know how to get where people are looking.” Shifts in the Art Industry:“Artists have to have a name before making reproductions. A lot of artists jump on it too soon, and their originals aren’t valued enough.” “Artists document their work now; they take pictures at different stages of their work because there’s some deception with artists using print and computers to draw their work.” “Oil painting, pastel, and watercolor are still popular, but now there’s digital arts and spray-paint; there’s a lot more urban art going on. Acrylics have taken over as a major new medium, and there are constant changes in those materials.” “We used to do Clark Hulings giclées, and they were so popular; when a giclée came out we could sell it for hundreds of dollars, instead of thousands for original prints.” “It’s not like our society supports a lot of artists; it’s not like the old mentorships when you worked with a great artist. Now, being an artist is expensive.” Who Becomes Famous?“The bottom line is art is a business, and you need some sort of marketing plan. You need to be able to go out and see galleries, get your site updated, be able to mail to your list, and get collectors and keep track of them.” “The people who get seen are the ones with the drive and the business concepts.” “The ones that believe they don’t need any marketing, that they’ll be discovered because they’re that good—it doesn’t really work like that.” “An artist recently said this to me about success: ‘You really just keep doing what you feel you need to be doing and if you do it long enough people believe it too’.”
May 26, 2017
Control How Your Art Business is Perceived
01:14:19
http://mariabrophy.com/ (Maria Brophy) is an art-business consultant and the author of Art, Money, & Success. She got her start managing her husband’s surf-art business (http://drewbrophy.com/ (drewbrophy.com)), and she applies that experience to her work with other artists. Her areas of expertise include licensing and the creation of multiple income streams. In this podcast, she discusses the importance of identifying a niche, the ways that licensing is used for different mediums, and how to make your art career profitable.  Artists Have to Have a Business Mindset:“If you want to have a successful art career, you have to view yourself as a business owner, and to remain in business you need cash flow, profit, and growth.”  “There are absolutely benefits to artists managing their own careers; it’s difficult to find an agent who will manage everything for you.” “It’s absolutely feasible to be able to earn six figures, but you have to think like a businessperson: you have to charge for everything. Don’t eat extra costs; pass those costs on to the client.” “There are ways to make everything you do profitable.” The Importance of Finding Your Niche:“If you are painting every subject matter and in every kind of medium, you won’t connect with anyone.” “If you can work within a niche and market yourself within it, it’s incredibly powerful. There’s a lot of power in being a big fish in a small pond.” “A lot of artists don’t realize they have a niche, and it’s right under their noses.” “You find a way to connect with people, to reach those buyers that will connect with your work, because they share a love for the thing you’re doing.” Marketing an Identifiable Style:“The artists who make millions from their art are not the most talented, but they’ve hit on something that mass amounts of people really enjoy.” “Don’t go the traditional route of licensing, but look for opportunities where your art would be the perfect solution for a company.” “Tell clients your requirements and say, ‘This is how I work.’ Those are the five magic words.” “When you sign your agreement with a gallery make sure it’s not exclusive to anywhere other than their area. You should have the freedom to show your work in any other gallery outside that geographic area.” “When you’re younger, it’s fun to get that pat on the back, but you learn quickly that a pat on the back doesn’t pay the mortgage.” Pricing Your Work:“Choose which market you want to be in: the high-end marketplace of galleries, the low-end marketplace of Etsy, or somewhere in the middle. Then follow the rules of that market.” “If you’re struggling with pricing, you can follow simple formulas such as figuring out a daily, weekly, and monthly rate. It’s good for working on new projects or one-off projects.” “If you don’t stay in front of people, they will forget about you. Everybody on the planet knows what Coca-Cola is, but even Coca-Cola advertises!”
May 10, 2017
Create Your Own Success
01:04:34
http://www.deanmitchellstudio.com/ (Dean Mitchell) is a nationally recognized painter of figures, landscapes, and still lifes, and his work often depicts themes from his southern upbringing. He’s won top honors from the https://nationalwatercolorsociety.org/ (National Watercolor Society) and https://www.americanwatercolorsociety.org/ (American Watercolor Society). Among the museums that house his work are the http://www.nelson-atkins.org/ (Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art) in Kansas City and the http://www.slam.org/ (St. Louis Art Museum). Dean is also a member of https://clarkhulingsfund.org/people/ (CHF’s advisory board). Building A Reputation:“I had to figure out a platform in which I could get known. The competitions started early on and that’s how I started nationally and internationally.” “Shows were the best way I knew to level the playing field. I did try to get grants, but that didn’t work out for me. Competitions worked out for me.” “Galleries have other artists they’re representing. And so I’d look around and think ‘how am I going to separate myself from the pack?’ So I’ve always looked at ways to market myself.” “Galleries are interested in selling the work. I was interested in getting known and [wanted] to be part of a conversation nationally.” “I’ve been in small towns and people think ‘there’s no art market there,’ but some of those people who live in those small towns are friends with people who are in the museum world.” “Galleries are a piece of the puzzle, but they are not the complete puzzle.” “When I did my first book, galleries told me ‘don’t do that, it’s a bad deal.’ And after my book, one of the galleries that said that, it’s sales tripled. That told me right there marketing was a huge part of it.” On Entering Competitions:“I don’t think I could ever get too well known that I wouldn’t want to do them. Why should I quit the very thing that gave me the platform for the voice I have?” “Shows were the best way I knew to get my name out there because they also did catalogues, and those catalogues became a marketing tool for my work.” “I thought the best way to build my platform was put my work in front of my peers, particularly in shows where they were giving out prize money. Sometimes when a painting wins a prize, a collector will suddenly be interested in it.” “You have to be your own critic. Sometimes the painting that’s edgy, collectors don’t necessarily want; but curators and museum directors who are judging shows like [it]. That’s something I think artists have to recognize.” “In order to get attention, I have to merit attention. I can’t just say ‘oh, I’m a great artist.’” Branding:“I’ve had galleries say to me ‘oh, we can’t sell that’. But the paintings they said they couldn’t sell, ended up selling for $40,000 each. So I will not have someone tell me what to paint.” “I’m controlling this narrative; no one else can control it. How someone wants to perceive it? That’s up to them. I have nothing to do with that.” “The brand isn’t consciously created. I’ve always, as an artist, explored my own emotions.” “I’m no Salvador Dalí, but I have built enough of a market that now I can start to work on leaving a legacy.” Genre and Style Pressure:“I looked at watercolors and thought ‘people are not willing to pay as much for these. This could possibly be another competition entry that’s a little less expensive.’” “I recognized there were a lot of watercolor competitions. And these built my platform. They built my reputation. But when people come to my show, they see how many mediums I work in.” “People think ‘I can’t afford that oil, but I can afford this watercolor.’ And people started to snap them up.” “There are people who are championing different things. Their sensibility might be different from yours. I do think realism has taken a hit, but I do think artists can be creative with it.”
May 04, 2017
How to Find Your Audience
01:13:51
Mary Ann is the founder and owner of http://www.weemsgallery.com/ (Weems Galleries & Framing), with two locations in Albuquerque, New Mexico—the first of which opened in 1981. The galleries’ holdings represent a wide range of styles, priced from five dollars to $8K, but Mary Ann emphasizes affordable art. A dedicated supporter of the Albuquerque arts scene, she also ran a major art festival there for 32 years, which drew 50K+ customers in its final year. Affordable Art:“Affordability has always been looked down upon. Art in the earlier days was always for the wealthy. And what you’re doing in creating affordable art is you’re taking artists who are willing to receive less for their artwork, which does not mean they’re lesser artists; you’re giving them a chance.” “I learned early that what I liked wasn’t the [popular] taste, I couldn’t use my taste alone. It was a balance … Price was absolutely imperative.” “We used to tell the artists, you can’t always look at time [to price it]. You’re going to have to put it in a price range that someone walks in and is inspired to buy it because it’s beautiful.” “Average people were very afraid to walk into galleries. Affordability became the key. You didn’t feel the intimidation.” Recognize Your Audience, Make Your Market:“I loved marketing. I realized artists (and this is a generalization) were very poor business people. My idea was to teach them and take it out of the ivory tower.” “I’ve told my artists: get out of the state you’re living in. You have to travel and get into other markets. Get out to other galleries, or do the art fairs.” “When I entered the Arts and Crafts Fair in New Mexico in 1982, the highest-priced item in my booth was $100. And I sold out. I had a ball and made incredible friends, and I developed followers. Looking at other artists who weren’t doing as well as I was, they weren’t recognizing their audience.” The Key to Longevity in the Art Market:“Trustworthiness. There is a tremendous amount of fraud in the art world. Hard work, seven days a week when I first started.” “I am an artist, so I get it. When we [at the gallery] get some money in, the artist gets paid. We have a very good reputation.” “If an artist sells through their own site, but feels as though the sale initiated through our gallery, they will bring us that commission…artists should have some loyalty to their gallery, too.” The Online Market:“[People] who buy art off the Internet are idiots if they’re not familiar with the artist. Seeing art in person and knowing what it looks like [is imperative].” “I’ve known multiple people who frame what they bought on the Internet and say ‘that just doesn’t look like what I bought’.” “The other thing I do differently is we have a ‘check-out’ program: you come into the gallery, check out the piece and you have it for 48 hours. So you get to see that piece in your home prior to purchasing. It’s very important to see how it changes with night [and] morning light in your home.” The Future of the Gallery Business:“It has changed rapidly since the 80s and 90s.” “I have seen a generation of younger people who appear not to have an appreciation for art and who will fill their wall with an 80-inch TV, and in the days prior to that being available, would fill it with a beautiful piece of art. “[Galleries] will have to be very smart and give the best service possible…and have a broader range of artwork.” “The gallery can’t be threatened by a fair, and the artist can’t be threatened by sending [people] to the gallery.” “When I sell, I tell [the customer] ‘you are not buying a product, you are buying this person… you are buying someone’s sweat, someone’s talent, someone’s life’.” Attaining Representation:“Walk away [from draconian contracts]. [Galleries] could own the rights, the reproductions. No artist should be that desperate.” “You better like [the gallery representing you], agree with what they’re offering you.”...
May 02, 2017
Beyond Arts Education: Why Artists Need Business Training
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Betsy Ehrenberg is the founder of http://www.glassnm.org/ (Glass Alliance New Mexico) and http://www.glancinfo.org/ (Glass Alliance of Northern California), organizations that further the development and appreciation of glass art. She is also a business strategy coach and president of http://www.bridgestosantafe.com/ (Bridges to Santa Fe), a company that helps businesses achieve their goals through marketing and product design consulting. Also, Betsy’s company is co-sponsoring an upcoming event called the http://www.artsbusinessinstitute.org/santa-fe-nm/ (Santa Fe Art Business Summit) (now at capacity), in collaboration with the Clark Hulings Fund and the http://www.artsbusinessinstitute.org/ (Art Business Institute). Why Artists Need Business Training: “Sometimes they [artists] think earning money, charging for their work, is not something they want to do. They feel embarrassed to do so. It’s an attitude, I have no idea where it begins, but a lot of artists just look at the word ‘money’ and see a four letter word.” “They need training on how to differentiate themselves, how to price their work properly, how to reach out to collectors. They’re not getting this in university.” “What is copyrighting? What is trademarking? What is the difference, and how do you know of you even want to copyright or trademark your artwork?” “Each artist has their own little concern. One of them is pricing. They don’t know whether they should be pricing their work based upon the material that they use, or on the time it takes, or whether they are pricing their work because it looks like somebody else’s, in context.” “The art educators, in many cases, have not been successful artists as measured by the amount of money they are able to make because they are an artist. They’re really not aware of the skills that they should have, and therefore, they’re not even teaching the artist the skills that they need to have, and should be able to demonstrate once they decide they’re going to make a living as an artist.” “Artists sometimes abandon the products that they have, that can make them money. They don’t have to do that…If it’s so popular, it’s okay, I believe, for them to get fabricators to help them make more of them. Artists often don’t want to even entertain that thought.” Santa Fe as a Hub of the Art World: “With over 200 galleries in Santa Fe, the participants will have a chance to visit as many galleries as they want, to be able to see how work that they believe is similar to theirs is actually priced.” “The organization, the Art Business Institute, so coming to Santa Fe for the first time because, number one, there’s a big audience, and number two, artists from all over the country want to have a chance to experience Santa Fe, an art centric city.” What’s Missing from Arts Education:“We have invited the art educators from the three universities in Santa Fe, who are teaching artists skills and how to be in business…My goal was to update the three universities on how to teach the business of art.” “The instructors are artists, people who have their MBA. They may be making somewhat of a living from selling their art, but because they’re in a learning environment, they want students to be fed a bunch of information, and demonstrate that they’ve learned it, even if the information is irrelevant.” “If it is a marketing website and they’re also selling their work in a gallery, the gallery owner is going to be annoyed that the artist is now trying to sell directly to the collector, bypassing the gallery. When educators in these three universities are spending four to six weeks teaching artists how to make websites, in fact it can hurt the artist’s ability to actually make money.” “The art educators are spending time talking about skills that are not important, whether or not the artist should have a C corporation, or a limited liability, or a partnership, or they shouldn’t even have a...
Mar 28, 2017
Manage a Successful Art Career
44:14
Dan Anthony is a sculptor and has been the business manager for http://www.glennagoodacre.com/ (Glenna Goodacre) since 1987. After 30 years working together, Glenna Goodacre is retiring. She is known for her work designing the Sacagawea impression on dollar coins, sculpting the Vietnam Women’s Memorial in Washington, D.C. on the National Mall, and the Irish Famine Memorial at Penn’s Landing in Philadelphia. Dan Anthony took an hour to tell us about Glenna’s retirement, some important upcoming events, and what he is planning to do next. Her final piece before retirement was created in collaboration with the Clark Hulings Fund, the https://clarkhulingsfund.org/relief/ (bas-relief Helping to Push. )Topics Include: Glenna Goodacre’s Retirement:“Glenna wants to wrap things up and to focus on being a grandmother, wife, and friend…. We started an archive project.” “We closed down a rental studio we had. We gave away the clay and the tools, the sculpture stands, equipment, Glenna’s sculpture and art books. We gave those last October to the New Mexico School for the Arts, which is an arts-based high school headquartered here in Santa Fe.” “Sculpture is very physical and it’s very demanding, and so as sculptors age they really do kind of wind down a bit.” The significance of breaking all of Glenna Goodacre’s molds. Helping to Push Bas-Relief:A collaboration between Glenna Goodacre and Clark Hulings, post-mortem. “Glenna adored Clark. They were very, very close friends. She met him, we’re guessing, in the early ‘70s in Texas. He was having an exhibition there. She was a fan of his already and went to meet him, and he was of course very gracious, and helpful, and eloquent, and they became fast friends.” “After Clark’s death, Elizabeth Hulings wanted Glenna to be involved in the Clark Hulings Fund somehow. Glenna couldn’t travel anymore, so she couldn’t be on the board, but they hit upon this idea of trying to create a bas-relief from one of Clark’s drawings.” “Glenna and I agreed to do that [create a bas-relief] before we actually saw the drawing we were going to get. Then, Elizabeth sent out this drawing of the donkeys https://clarkhulingsfund.org/relief/ (Helping to Push), which was from one of Clark’s trips to Egypt.” “In the relief, it’s unusual in that there are a lot of lines; Clark used a lot of lines in his paintings. You’ll see lines in this that I think give it a unique quality. I think we succeeded in channeling Clark Hulings into the bas-relief.” Scottsdale Art Auction Presents Glenna Goodacre:“It’s a retrospective exhibition of Glenna’s work, from her very first piece to almost the last. Clark’s relief is the last thing, but there’s a very late piece in there, so it’s a big retrospective exhibition. It’s wrapping up the career of one of America’s favorite sculptors.” “After downsizing, Glenna still had a big personal collection of her own work, and we had a significant inventory of larger works that were scattered around the country.” “Moving all of that art into one spot in Scottsdale took months. We still have one sculpture and a two-dimensional work to get out there: 114 lots in total.” Find out how you can participate in Glenna’s auction on http://glennagoodacreauction.com/ (April 6, 2017). What is a Business Manager?“Basically, it’s someone who can do the money work and the paperwork while the artist is making artwork.” “As an artist, you need to be as prolific as you can because you will need a body of work to solidify your situation.” “The studio work is really important, as is the business work. The promotion,keeping track of things, and the financial stuff is important also.” “While I was working with her, we had two, three million dollar years. That means that the galleries sold four and a half million dollars’ worth of work.” “It’s good to have a target and something to shoot for, and if you’re in a professional setting and you’re setting goals, you
Mar 21, 2017
Art Collections Management: Caring for Your Collection
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Maura Kehoe Collins is an art collections manager and the founding director of http://www.artiphile.com/ (Artiphile), an independent art advisory which provides museum-standard services for care and maintenance of private collections. Maura assists artists, private collectors, foundations, estates, and corporations in inventory, assessment, and administration to address the physical and practical needs of a private collection. Topics include: Artiphile Services:What is art collections management? “Museums have many departments that are caring for their collections, conservators, registrars, curators, even the maintenance staff you know a whole lot of folks working in an art museum. I try to bring all of those functions into my advisory and provide those services to my client.” “Most private art collectors don’t have the information to properly steward a collection.” “It’s a special collector that wants to hire and pay someone to do the inventory, do a condition survey, rather than just calling in a conservator to fix a broken thing that they are aware of.” Services offered to prevent benign neglect Collectors as Stewards:“I saw a need for the private collector to care for their works of art more to a museum standard and to recognize their role as stewards – as the temporary custodians to these works of art that should go on and outlive them.” “Certainly, a collector’s nature is going to want to buy and collect more and acquire.” “It’s not always so much fun to find out that this painting needs $20,000 worth of conservation work immediately just to stop this progressive problem, or just to make it safe for travel because you want to lend it or something.” Documentation & Inventory:Inventory horror stories Importance of UCC Forms What should artist be documenting? “Documentation is a very important part of the object and the care of collections.” “I can’t help anybody or do anything until I have a very clear and accurate kind of accounting of what is there, where is it, and what its condition is, and try to get a handle on that inventory. I consider that the keystone function.” For artists: “Be really careful and very detailed about what paper, what materials were used to make this work of art because that information stays with the object. Goes on the bill of sale, it gets into the hand of the collector and then it could get into the hand of the conservator if it should come to that at some point in time. We all know some of the new materials aren’t as stable as older, just oil on canvas there’s been some issues with new materials so the more the conservator can know the better the outcome.” Reframing:“A lot of the framing materials of earlier days were not acid free, so this causes an acidic environment. Then, you have this acid migration that can go from these backboards, the matting and all of this stuff through to the work of art the paper itself. You see discoloration or spots and things start to happen, especially in combination with heat, humidity, and light.” “If I could do one thing, I would see that the collectors understood that people who were selling works of art should put on the frame, ‘This frame is temporary.’ Or ‘We don’t know the materials of this frame; please check with your conservation framer that it is sufficient.'” “It’s still a great work of art I’m sure with everything you’ve bought, but the frame might not be what you think it is.”
Mar 10, 2017
Student Curated Art Collections: A New Way to Experience Art
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James is founder and president of the http://www.nationalschoolartcollective.org/ (National School Art Collective), a non-profit created to develop student curated and student owned fine art collections in high schools. He has developed art collection and is looking to start another at Tippecanoe High School. The National School Art Collective:“One of the goals of the National School Art Collective is to bring an art experience to students in a school every day.” “A small group of students come together and run the program much like a museum curator would. They make the initial selections. They reach out to the artists. They put together the program to get the artists to submit just like they would for an art competition.” “Once the students have narrowed the submissions to a small number, they will put forth the artwork, the artist’s information to the entire student body, and then the student body will end up voting on it on one day. After that, the selections are made.” “When we talk about the funding aspect of it that’s where the National School Art Collective would come in is that essentially we would help a school start it and get their feet wet and help give them the tools.” “Once you have a number of artworks up in the school, now you’re selling the collection.” “The beauty of having professional artwork in a school is that many of those people really have no connection to the art world and this is forming that connection, and hopefully, at an early stage in their life.” Next steps for the National School Arts Collective Collecting on Behalf of an Institution:“Forming a committee of students was a real key in making sure that the selections were going to be up to a certain standard.” “The committee would look at, obviously, the basic elements and principles of design. They would look at the artist’s background, their level of education, the number of shows they had been in, the prices of their artwork, their prestige.” “We would also have the artwork on display prior to the event for a few days so they could really see the artwork up close.” “Because it’s their collection, it means something to them to have variety, to have a range of work whether it be different types of media, different types of themes, different types of artists, artists who are self-taught, and artists who have multiple degrees and MFAs and so many solo exhibitions that they can’t put it onto two pages on their resume.” “I don’t know how many people walk through a gallery in a day, but I can guarantee you at some of these large high schools around the country, we would have anywhere between three and 4,000 people coming through the doors. That was probably a low number at times, especially some of these mega schools.” “It changes the atmosphere of a school, and when you walk by and you become engaged in something like that it takes you away from those minor stresses you might have at the moment…” “What they hopefully, end up seeing years from now is the interests, the themes, what was happening at that time. Almost like a time capsule because they’re in tune to what’s going on in the world right now.” Why Should Young People Collect Art?“We’re more mobile now than we used to be in the past, but I get very, very few students that talk about a gallery experience or a museum experience.” “Over the years, I’ve seen it even as a teacher that we take fewer and fewer trips to museums. Buses cost money and gas costs money and substitute teachers cost money, so it’s not in the best interest for an administrator to arrange a museum trip…” “Young people need to have that experience and the effects can be dramatic over a lifetime. Experiencing an artwork in person is so much different than seeing it on a phone.” “We’re planting a seed and that seed, it may not flower early on in their professional career or their life, but … You will put something on your walls, and what are you going to put on it? How are you making that choice?...
Feb 27, 2017
Recognizing the Legacies of Overlooked Artists
01:31:42
Peter Trippi is editor-in-chief of https://fineartconnoisseur.com/ (Fine Art Connoisseur), a bi-monthly magazine for collectors of representational paintings, sculpture, drawings, and prints. He’s also the president of Projects in 19th Century Art Inc., the firm he established in 2006 to pursue a range of research, writing, and curating opportunities, including the recent traveling exhibition,https://www.friesmuseum.nl/en/see-and-do/exhibitions/alma-tadema/ ( Lawrence Alma-Tadema: At Home in Antiquity). Topics include: Lawrence Alma-Tadema: At Home in Antiquity ExhibitionFrom obscurity to resurrection:  “The resurrection is only partial, let me be clear. Interestingly, Alma-Tadema has been doing just fine on the commercial market.” “His pictures, the major ones, now sell in the millions of dollars, at Sotheby’s and Christie’s and Barnham. In fact, there is respect for him, and that has been the case since the 1970s, on an ever-growing basis.” “A lot of museums around the United States, Canada, Western Europe own his pictures, but they don’t really know what to do with them.” “We decided to tackle him in a new way, and the paintings that we selected reflected that different vantage.” The Divide Between Collectors and Museums/Galleries:“The likability factor of some art is worrisome to some intellectuals. They feel like [some art] is just too accessible to be good.” “Alma-Tadema certainly was criticized that way over many decades. People felt that they were well-crafted pictures, but they were too likable, too charming for serious museum display or exhibition. Therefore, they were kept in storage and not really talked about.” “It denies the public a chance to see things that they enjoy. Now, balancing that is a little tricky… there is a kind of line where you need to track the balance between popularity and quality.” Fine Art Connoisseur Magazine:How to get featured in Fine Arts Connoisseur and their “Three to Watch” features Why do some artists make it and others don’t? “I’m very much a curator on paper. I am thinking about how this is all going to look together and also what is the message of the article.” “We don’t just do features on individual artists. We also do themes, and we do a series of hidden collection articles… We’re trying to get people interested in the passions of other people.” “Coming to my own little world, with the magazine, absolutely, we want to encourage collectors to collect more discerningly.” “Our role is to go one notch down on the fame chart, not on the quality chart, and put in front of our readers those names–whether they’re historical or contemporary–because that’s more of a service.” “We’re telling stories, highlighting individuals who are not so familiar. We don’t need to replicate what the mainstream media is doing already.” “I felt that this was right because it was very much going to be advocating for quality in the kind of art areas that I support, personally.” Legacy:“All of the issues of legacy are in flux enormously, right now. Part of that has to do with this huge generational shift. As the baby boomers come into legacy planning, there is this frenzy of anxiety about how that’s going to all be rolled out.” “How do the works of art get preserved, as people grow ill and pass away? And how does the next generation take care of them and celebrate them, and so on?” People who are working today, in their prime, need to be thinking one step ahead as well, because there’s this tidal wave occurring now with that generation of baby boomers. “The art world, as interconnected as it may seem, is not really dealing with these issues in a very coherent, across-the-field sort of way.” “That’s one of the reasons I really like what The Clark Hulings Fund is doing. That there’s an element of clarity, of business-mindedness, of neutrality. It’s not about style; it’s about the vision and the practices of good legacy-building.”...
Feb 15, 2017
Between Creativity and Commerce: Art Thinking
01:07:29
How do you deal with changing industries? How do you make sure that your business remains viable for years to come? http://amywhit.com/ (Amy Whitaker), author, business person, artist, and Assistant Professor at http://steinhardt.nyu.edu/ (NYU Steinhardt), addresses these questions and more in her book https://www.amazon.com/Art-Thinking-Creative-Schedules-Budgets/dp/0062358278/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1454209320&sr=1-1&keywords=%22art+thinking%22+amy+whitaker (Art Thinking). As she puts it, “even if you are succeeding at something, you have to force yourself to go back to the drawing board all the time.” Topics Include: Art Thinking:Design thinking vs. art thinking “Facing the blank canvas of having an idea or the direction you want to move but not knowing if you can really get there and having to explore.” The importance of “carving out this space of the market to support your own early exploration and forays.” “If you’re making a work of art in any field, it’s a process.” “This has to do a lot with the things that make a business continually remain viable over time.” The Suits vs. the Creatives:“I think people are still afraid of the market and people feel that business is a set of rules… People feel like they’re selling out. I don’t think that’s the case.” “I think business is incredibly creative and that it’s a set of structural building blocks.” “Many of the things that people approach in business – when they’re talking about a business plan or return on investment – they’re really talking about similar things to what happens in art.” “As a creative person you can take your way of working, whether that’s as a visual artist or a visual practice artist or a choreographer, and you can move business around like a form.” “In the same way that oil paint has its limitations and its advantages, there are things about capitalism that are limited.” “Business is a creative design medium where you’re moving around these pieces of class structure and investment return; and you’re figuring out what works for you that supports your practice and feels okay with your politics.” “Art world history is littered with examples of artists doing something structurally artistic in the marketplace.” Science & Art:“The vector of creativity is curiosity and skepticism; they undergird the process of science but also the disciplines of faith.” “You don’t want to be a scientist who has no imagination, and you don’t want to be an artist who has no rigor.” “To become the next Google is not to follow the Google template, but to become the next whatever-you-are-trying-to-be from first principles that you believe can be as transformational and as important as Google.” Why Do People Get Bored at Museums?“Museums are no longer built in lockstep with the human experience.” “People get bored and tired because they’re overwhelmed by the scale of the experience. They feel like they should see a much larger quantity of art than certainly I can take in.” “Museums are oriented toward the voice of the art historian as opposed to the voice of the artist… That’s a very different voice than identifying with the artist at the moment the art was made, thinking about it as a process, being a fellow creative traveler, and enjoying the beauty of it.”
Feb 07, 2017
Balancing Art, Life, and Business
01:12:38
After recovering from a health scare, Aletta de Wal took her skills in corporate training and development and applied them to artists in http://www.artistcareertraining.com/ (Artist Career Training), a business coaching enterprise that focuses on small group classes, home studies, and one-to-one advisement for artists. She is also the author of http://www.artistcareertraining.com/realjobartist/ (My Real Job is Being an Artist), which is the winner of the 2016 Benjamin Franklin Award for Best Voice in Non-fiction. In this hour long show, Aletta takes the time to talk about her transition from corporate life into artist advisement, and her take on balancing life and business. Topics Include: Artist Career Training:Marketing & the Importance of Consistency What is an Artist Advisor, anyway? Creating a signature body of work “The general curriculum began as one single program; then, I gradually said one size does not fit all.” “As I saw artists struggling the last 15 years, I began to realize that most of them are coming to me with some knowledge of what they had to do, but they didn’t know where to start.” “Most of them, will take my home study programs, for example, and they’ll go through the first and the second one on their own because I like people to be able to manage their learning as their time demands. Then, they will come to me for some coaching.” Artist and Corporations:“If you look at some of the performance management systems that corporations use, they’re elucidating for artists, and I use them in my coaching.” “An art business is a business, so artists could use [corporate] tools to look at their careers in a different way.” “If corporations could open up to the fact that they use art and artists every day in their business, they could be supporting artists and overall creating a more vibrant economy.” “There’s a real need to bring back the essence of what art is for humanity and culture.” Self-Sustaining Art Career:Art as a hobby “Artists have to realize it’s not going to happen in two years, for most of them.” “The first thing an artist needs is a very strong body of signature art because if you have that and continually refine it, that takes you back to the reason you’re doing all of this.” “The second thing is, if you want a sustainable career then don’t build a business vision that is so far away from where you are now that it feels impossible because you’ll just give up before you really go far.” “Artists need to have good work habits. If you don’t go into the studio every day, it’s unlikely you’re going to have a body of work to travel across the country in 25 years or even 50 years unless you’re actively working at that.” Artists need to ask themselves, “What do I need to support myself and my family and my art business in the way that I’m accustomed to or want to and what it’s going to take for me to get that?” “Artists typically don’t and that’s why I think organization like yours and Artist Career Training have an important role to play.”
Dec 15, 2016
Economics of the Art Market
01:03:23
How does an artist bridge the divide between the art and business worlds? https://clarkhulingsfund.org/finalists/neil-ramsay/ (Neil Ramsay), founder and director of http://www.artsupconcepts.com/ (ArtsUp!), hopes to address this divergence by utilizing the 5,800 square-foot ArtsUp! facility as both an events space and a gallery, with massive installations that are located 12 feet off the floor. In this space, the artist becomes the CEO of their own project and must work in a cross-functional team to accomplish their vision. In this nearly hour long show, Neil describes how he became an artist advocate and why he designed and teaches the Visual Arts Marketing Course at Florida International University. This is such an incredible talk that the topics are best expressed as quotations from Neil himself: ArtsUp!:“It’s a platform for artists and creators to experiment with their particular craft.” “It is an artist-centric organization and it also endures as a private events space.” Came from “the idea of implementing a gallery that is literally available twelve feet above the ground where you’re standing up to the ceiling is how I developed that.” “Each project is almost like a start-up experience of its own.” “What I do is I really try to facilitate and remove many of the bureaucratic hindrances and things of that nature that make it repetitive.” Creating an Experiential Learning Opportunity:“The team forms a flat hierarchy so they [the artists] are absolutely in charge of their vision.” “As opposed to delivering a lecture or giving a series of instructions or something of that nature, it’s creating the environment for the individual that they can actually immerse themselves in.” An individual artist or creator runs the facility “by their willingness to actually join in with the facilitation of their idea.” “We share tools and equipment to help facilitate whatever the artist’s idea is for that particular space, and whatever site-responsive or site-specific project they want to realize.” “Each project each artist, https://clarkhulingsfund.org/finalists/vanessa-diaz/ (like Vanessa Diaz), is treated individually.” “The level of involvement and responsibility in-and-of-itself is more than some artists are willing to endure, or that they feel that they’re above or below the contribution. We understand that. It’s just not for everyone.” Economics of the Art World:“The art market, I can tell you, is one of the last unregulated markets.” “The art fair and the gallery, all of these things, are intermediary. That is their job. That’s what that business is constructed to do. It is supposed to market, it is supposed to match the artist with collectors.” “Galleries start to form their own brand and their own interest and they might have their own niche and things like that. That’s entrepreneurial.” “If they believe that an art gallery is the only way, that artist needs further education. That’s what our purpose is. To say ‘you know what? There are other ways’.” “I think the point is that the artist has choices and it’s up to them to figure out what are all the options available, and every year a new option becomes available. We’re just in a very entrepreneurial and capitalist society.” Professionalism vs. Professionalizing:“Business has a hard time understanding the arts, so… I’m advocating for the professionalizing, that within the organization, the artist is seen just as professional as the accountant, just as professional as the director and the other typical roles…” “Artists went to art-school, not business-school. It’s not so much trying to make them an MBA overnight, it’s not about that.” “There’s a business language, there’s the language of arts, and what they will find in the experience is there is a lot of business vernacular and there is a lot of a business experience in the process. Even though it is an artist-centric organization and you can’t get around that…” Artist...
Nov 13, 2016
Playing Your Art Forward
46:02
Sabin Howard is a classical figurative sculptor with over 33 years of experience. Known for his works of heroic scale, including Hermes, Aphrodite, and Apollo, the http://www.newcriterion.com/ (New Criterion) has called him a “sculptor who’s work radiates a startling presence, while finding its roots in the classical past.” He’s part of the winning design team for the National World War I Memorial in Pershing Square Park, Washington DC, and he also offers drawing and design webinars in a digital format. Topics Include: World War I Commission:The application process for public art commissions Public art as a part of a sustainable business Process for designing and creating a 75 foot-long bronze wall that represents World War I with 45 figures in a processional composition Communicating an idea in a way that will resonate with the general public Collaboration:Learning to collaborate as a form of communication The process of rebuilding and ripping things a part An elevation of the compositional process Art as a Business:“If I didn’t have a really, really high end product and I hadn’t spent 50,000 hours in front of a model over 33 years, no shortcuts … I wouldn’t have a business.” “As an independent artist, you have to decide how to create your own life.” “There is a creative aspect to entrepreneurship and business that I really wish more artists could see that.” “I have to do the business to drive the art.” Teaching drawing as a way of breaking the art market system. Marketing & PR:“It’s about making an energetic connection with other people and talking about my mindset.” “Your greatest skill is your craft, but you’ve got to learn how to present yourself.” “Artists need to be able to share with people and create a value for that special talent that they have.” “As an artist, you need to go out and show that there’s a different version, there’s a different vision that is available and possible.” “It’s important that an artist be involved in showing their work and takes ownership of what he makes rather than have somebody else take over his business.” Art World & Galleries:“You have this thing called “the art world”, art world is run by the status quo.” “Art is seen as a commodity. It’s seen as something that a lot of people will buy because it’s like a stock that will go up in value.” “The gallery system did function once, but it doesn’t anymore because the gallerist would encourage and push artists through the sales.” Started his own gallery for 7 months to sell his work publicly.
Oct 21, 2016
The Long-Term Art Career
01:01:48
https://clarkhulingsfund.org/finalists/ryan-s-brown/ (Ryan Brown) is an artist who works in the naturalist tradition, studying figures, still life, and landscapes. He’s dedicated himself to the methods practiced by the masters of Western European art and has established the http://www.cas-utah.com/ (Center for Academic Study and Naturalist Painting) in Utah to continue this tradition. In this hour-long show, Ryan talks about his intention to have a long-term art career, how he sustains himself, his current work at the Center for Academic Study and Naturalist Painting, and how he markets and brands his work. Topics Include: Center for Academic Study and Naturalist Painting:Establishing a foundation in the academic tradition of painting Importance of developing skills rather than meeting deadlines Gaining non-profit status and moving to France “Starting a school on my own seemed like the only option because it had to have an infrastructure or a way of organizing it that was more geared to student progress than it was to the machine of the university.” “There’s a great amount of discipline and a good training required to work at the highest levels.” Career Insights:“Art is a really expensive profession.” “Be clever with how you manage your funds and manage your business and understand that there are ups and downs.” “You never want to cut corners when you’re trying to be professional. You always want to use the best materials for shipping and framing frame so it doesn’t get damaged.” “As an artist, you’re a small business owner and you’re in charge, you’re the boss, and you have to manage that like any other small business would be managed. You have to keep your books organized, plan for big expenses, and plan for investing in those big projects.” Marketing as an “Honest Dialogue”:“You’ve got to put it out there and you have to find an audience.” “If you can develop a social media presence it’s not artificial. It’s a very natural form of marketing because what it allows you to do is just share your perspective on your work.” “Marketing is a huge part of becoming financially successful. Even more so, I would say, than good skill development.” “My balance is maybe a little offset to doing great work but it absolutely cannot deny the need for marketing it.” Finding Your Brand:“My brand is a non-brand.” “Some people want financial success a lot earlier on so their efforts to brand themselves early are more focused in.” “If I choose to brand a little bit less I know in the long run, there will be a common thread and the brand will be more recognizable so I have invested in the long game.” Working with Galleries:Starting out, “the only real option that seemed viable was to sell in galleries. That was the epitome of making it as an artist was to get in a good gallery and sell with other good artists.” “I knew that I wasn’t doing the quality of work that I wanted so that’s when I went and studied at the Florence Academy of Fine Art and really developed those skills.” “The goal then was still to try and make a name in galleries and sell for a good amount of money and gain the respect of my peers and be in big shows.” “When I got into it and was selling well and a part of that world I realized that’s not actually my definition of success. Selling well in galleries isn’t the ultimate for me. The ultimate is doing really great work.” Filler art vs. Fine Art:Using sketches as learning tools – sellable ones “When I was in galleries I felt like I had to sell it all like it was the most amazing thing. You’re trying to tell the collector they’re getting something of value.” “I think a lot about when I’m making them the great works of art I want to emulate and I try to put a lot of those qualities into those paintings.” “I do a lot of different works but the purpose behind it is the distinguishing factor.”
Oct 11, 2016
Create A Thriving Art Business
49:57
Alan Bamberger is an art consultant, advisor, author and appraiser who specializes in research, business management, the marketing of original art, and art-related documents, but he is best known for his regular post to http://artbusiness.com/ (ArtBusiness.com), which he also manages. With nearly 40 years of experience in the art world, Alan works with artists, collectors, other art professionals and galleries to solve difficult art situations. Topics Include: Price Consultations with Artists:Problem solving using available images, background info, and the piece of art Recommends price structure for individual pieces and overall collections Explains how they can defend their prices to interested parties Older Art vs. Contemporary:Older art has a secondary market in place with a finite quantity of pieces available On older art: “I price based on the moment, based on available information, and based on primary market information.” “When an artist is still active, it’s not clear what the future trajectory of that artist will be, where their prices will go, or what they’re going to do” all of which can change the value of their art. Artists as Sole Proprietors:Step into the role that you want to fulfill “I’ve met so many artists who know so little about business, and business was not something that was taught in art school or even discussed.” “You can’t survive as an artist if you’re not selling enough art to pay for food and rent.” “Artists have become far more aware that it is not simply a situation where you sit in your studio and paint or create or sculpt…” “I focus on what happens when the art is done, when it’s ready to go out into the public, now what?” “Artists have never had more opportunities to advocate on their own behalves, to get their work out there, to talk about what’s behind it, to talk about themselves as artists.” “If you can’t sell your art, you’re not going to survive as an artist.” Common Mistakes of Resumes & Portfolios:The artist website as the portfolio Importance of having an identifiable brand “The artist has to present themselves in ways that pretty much anyone can understand and connect with and appreciate.” “Having confusing online profiles or presentations would be, I think, the most common mistake” Don’t leave it to your audience “to figure out the brand of this artist, what’s their unique voice, where are they coming from, what’s the story that this artist and the art, what’s the narrative, what are they trying to tell us?” Increase the Value of Your Artwork:The characteristics that make famous artists famous “Document everything that you’re doing.” “Narrative makes a piece more buyable.” “Take a photograph of it, take some notes, write down a couple of sentences, keep decent records, because if it turns out you’re a long running success, at some point, institutions or collectors or whomever will want to explore and learn the whole story.” “You can’t take long sabbaticals between individual works or series or bodies of work.” Getting Your Collection Appraised:Things to consider when purchasing a piece of artwork. “Contact your insurance company and ask them what they need in terms of an appraisal in order to insure your art.” “At the beginning, you can, for a while, just use the cost of goods as the approach.” “Monitor market activities for the artists you collect just in case there is a substantial price fluctuation, you may just want to have those pieces revalued for insurance purposes.”
Oct 02, 2016
Make Your Art Economically Viable
45:35
https://clarkhulingsfund.org/finalists/elizabeth-corkery/ (Elizabeth Corkery) is a large-scale installation artist and the founder of http://jointheprintclub.com/ (Print Club Ltd.), a limited edition print making company. Her most recent and ambitious project to date is a spatially transformative sculptural exhibition called Ruin Sequence at http://www.towerhillbg.org/ (Tower Hill Botanic Gardens,) opening October 8th. The project is funded by the Clark Hulings Fund Business Accelerator Program. Topics Include: Preparations for Ruin Sequence:“I started conceiving how I might make a body of work that was sculpturally-based and that could be presented alongside the plants.” “Probably about a dozen of the pieces were made at a residency in London. Then I would say another dozen have been made since coming home.” “This is my first foray into a new series of work that was sculpturally based rather than starting from print as the medium.” “Navigating the materiality of the pieces and how I wanted to construct them was probably the most challenging part.” “It’s not a conventional art world or gallery site, so it is going to expand awareness and hopefully appreciation of my work to a group of people that would otherwise not necessarily have encountered it.” Clark Hulings Business Accelerator Program:CHF funded the “fabrication of modular pedestal supports and also the transport of those and some of the marketing materials that are being produced in tandem with the show.” The Business Accelerator Program allowed me to “discover how applicable a lot of those strategies would be for promoting my personal work as well. That’s definitely a take away that I’ll be putting some of those strategies into place when I’m promoting this show and sharing imagery of this new work.” Print Club Ltd.:The salability of my art is what “prompted my decision to start Print Club because I really enjoy the act of screen printing and making prints on a regular basis…” “Print Club has become more of the commercial aspect of my work more so than my bigger installation practice.” “I was inspired by how easy it’s become to set up a nice looking online store and market yourself online.” “The next phase for Print Club is that I’m actually moving into inviting specific artists to do collaborative editions with me. It will be their designs, and we will work together to realize them as screen prints.” Protecting the Integrity of a Work:Importance of inventorying and tracking large pieces of work “When you sell a work, you can’t always have that control, if it’s heading off to a place that you can’t accompany it to.” “This work that’s going into the greenhouse, as I said there’s going to be a big of unpredictability about how it’s going to survive the next six months. I plan to make it available for sale, and I also am confident that it will survive the winter in the greenhouse.” Cross-over between Commercial Art and Fine Art:“The two can feed each other. I’ve learnt about marketing and about communicating the work online can be used to help promote my personal work as well. “They require some specific strategies for each of them. I’m still figuring out, as I said, how some of those marketing strategies could actually live for my own work as well. That’s a work in progress.” “I think having a business that’s run by an artist that has a career in their own right beyond the work that they’re making for that business only stands to raise the profile of the more commercial prints.”
Sep 27, 2016
Project Management: An Impressionistic Art Form
51:33
https://clarkhulingsfund.org/finalists/ghost-of-a-dream/ (Ghost of a Dream), a moniker for the collaborative duo Adam Eckstrom and Lauren Was, create large sculptural installations, collages, and immersive texts made from lottery tickets, romance novels, playing cards, and other raw or discarded materials. Most recently, Ghost of a Dream has been working on a project they call https://clarkhulingsfund.org/details/ghost-dream-fair-housing-project/ (The Fair Housing Project.) They’ve created a house from art fair materials, which they’ve immersed in a sea of fog and filmed documentary style. The house, film, and other works created by this duo will be showing at http://smackmellon.org/ (Smack Mellon) from September 24 -October 30, 2016. They’re also Clark Hulings Fund https://clarkhulingsfund.org/accelerator/ (2015 Business Accelerator grant recipients), which means they participate in the educational program of the fund, and they’re also receiving critical funding for The Fair Housing Project. Topics include: The Fair Housing Project:Dealing with project challenges: original goals vs. reality Collecting and reusing materials as a part of their Studio Practice Commentary on the contemporary art world, art fairs, and the environment Showing at Smack Mellon this fall Business Accelerator Program funded the transportation of the house and video equipment for the documentary Project management as an impressionistic art form. Art Fairs: A Double-Edged SwordGalleries make over three-quarters of their annual sales from art fairs A vital part of the art market Art fairs challenge the way we see art, both for environmental reasons and just seeing that much art packed into one space. Necessary evil: helps pay artists’ bills and offers exposure but not great for viewing individual works Business of Large-Scale Installations:Unintended lags in sales: making business sustainable Working w. 3 different types of work simultaneously “We’re able to get people really excited by these huge projects but then also have something that you can put in your living room.” Being type-cast vs. branding Importance of “not being limited by our materials or the processes that we know how to do.” “We’re always learning new tools and new ways to make things, to do these things we haven’t done before. That keeps it fun.” Romance/Work/Collaboration:Learning to compromise “There’s something really lucky about having two of us working together because one person can be focused on that part of the day while the other person is getting work done in the studio. “I think we make better art because we’re really truthful with each other, and we can tell each other exactly how we feel something is being read or how it gets taken.” Working with other artists to start ArtGarda, a residency program. Art for Artists, a curated opportunity for artists to exchange their work with other artists. Benefit of living and being around artists communities. Teaching:Great networking tool. “Learning comes from teaching, so it’s exciting to share with people because new things just come out of that.” “Teaching just gets me really invested in process and how to inspire and create people to start from the beginning.
Sep 23, 2016
Anyone Can Be a Collector of Original Works
01:09:05
What is patronage; and who can be a patron of the arts? For Shannon Robinson, curator and chairperson of Windows to the Divine, wants everyone to understand that they can become a collector regardless of financial means or cultural biases around the art market. She does this through Windows to the Divine’s educational programs that teach about patronage, the art industry, and philanthropy. Topics Include: Collectors & Patrons:“We use the term ‘collector’ or ‘patron’, and it feels like you’re being an elitist.” “Patronage is for everyone; I believe it’s a moral imperative.” “Everybody has to do collect in order to make sure that the visual arts thrive and survive.” “This is the best time in human history to be a collector because anyone can do it.” Getting started as a Collector:Regardless of financial means, anyone can become a collector Becoming a collector is a “wonderful lifetime journey.” “Go to art shows, get involved in an art museum, subscribe to magazines, take an art history class, consider going to your local art student’s league and take an introductory class…” Create a “mental bank of things you’ve seen, good versus bad, so that you can sit there and compare and make some sort of judgment. Forming a cohesive collection:Benefits of buying original art Determine your direction and goals as a collector: recreational vs. legacy vs. investment collecting Collecting deceased vs. living artists “Collecting is a lifelong journey and it’s going to take years for you to have any real acumen.” “Art collecting in and of itself is a creative endeavor.” Online Art MarketBe wary of fraud, work with reputable vendors “There’s no substitute for seeing it live, looking at the texture, looking at the brush strokes, being able to really examine the work.” “The notion of a direct tie between the collector and artist is one that is changing every day and the whole gallery paradigm is changing.” “The advantage of online art markets is that it could cut out the middleman for some artists. It could mean that some artists might have great opportunities they didn’t have before.” “There’s just a lot of different economic paradigms out there and I think that’s exciting and that’s good for the consumer, and hopefully will be good for the artist.” “Due to globalization, the internet there is original art in every possible price range and media out there.”
Sep 22, 2016
Make Your Art Career Sustainable
53:09
How can an artist ensure that their art career is a sustainable enterprise long into the future? https://clarkhulingsfund.org/finalists/carla-crawford/ (Carla Crawford) is a figurative painter and https://clarkhulingsfund.org/grants/ (Business Accelerator Program) participant. She works in the classical tradition and focuses her latest works on displaced migrants. In this nearly hour long show, Carla addresses the importance of making your art career sustainable, how to address lags in sales, and the cross-pollination of traditional and contemporary. This is such an incredible talk that the topics are best expressed as quotations from Carla herself: Establishing a Sustainable Art Practice:“We all want to spend all our time in the studio, but how are you going to sustain that over your lifetime? It’s such an important thing to be able to master.” Mastering the business side of art is “a completely different scale from what you’re doing in the studio, but it’s essential.” On starting over after completing a solo show or big project: “I think it comes back to that idea for me of having a sustainable practice. Obviously, I want to be working as an artist for my whole life.” On formulating a business strategy: “how I run my business has been based on advice from other artists, which is, of course, priceless. People who have gone before you and tell you how they’ve made it work.” “You have to figure out how you’re going to tailor your business to make it work for you.” “Business training is essential to making your practice sustainable.” Sales:“When you create, you try and create with that authentic spirit, where you really are just engaging with what intrigues you, but then, of course, you do have to switch mindsets and think in that business mode, again, if you want it to be sustainable, if you want to be able to do work that can sustain itself. “Sometimes things sell like hotcakes and sometimes they don’t.” “It’s all about just finding a new audience and finding the right audience for a painting to move.” Cross-pollination between Traditional & Contemporary:“I don’t think that I really came up with a branding strategy when I started out as an artist. I think that’s not exactly what draws you to being an artist.” “Studying realistic painting, studying these traditional methods is this counter-cultural choice, but there’s so much in the art world at large to learn from and grow from.” “There’s 2 different brands, 2 different modes of thinking, where one is the studio brain, where you’re thinking, you’re in the creative mindset, and the other one is the business mindset.” Honing Skills with the Business Accelerator Program:“I really appreciate that there’s this training with Clark Hulings of the business side of your art career. “ “I was trained in layering paint, in anatomy, in underpainting and traditional drawing methods. Running a business and learning how to make your art business sustainable, that’s a whole other skill.” On Business Accelerator Program workshops: “I’ve loved just being able to participate in the community, taking part in the classes, the business support. It’s so helpful and I do think it’s something that I need that training as I’m moving forward.” Ateliers, Residencies, & Arts Education:To determine your desired art career path: “You have to go out and figure out where you’re going to get the skills you want to have.” “I decided not to do a traditional MFA program simply because I wouldn’t be getting those figurative skills that I wanted to have.” “I wanted to spend 8 hours a day in front of the figure doing intensive anatomy, study of the physics of light, studies of traditional drawing methods. I couldn’t necessarily get that in a more traditional program or a normal program.” “As a painter, your studies are never done. There’s so much to engage with, to study with. It’s such a rich tradition. There’s so many methods, so many techniques.”...
Sep 11, 2016
Never Settle in Your Art Career
46:43
In this 40 minute interview, the listener will learn about building and maintaining a commercial mindset, the importance of networking and marketing, while creating pieces you love. As a bonus, learn about the CHF Art-Business Accelerator™ Program and the importance of combatting sexism and racism within the art industry. Funding your passion:Use existing networking mechanisms, such as your gallery Exploring your artistic interests while creating a sustainable and well-funded product Always be willing to sell your works independently of the gallery network through commissions, local events, social media, and email newsletters Subject matter does not determine salability – there’s someone for everything Branding:Artists as inventors Maintain the integrity of the archival qualities of your work Document the processes and don’t be afraid to share with other artists and your audiences Remaining authentic in your work: “The uniqueness of my brand is something that I actually don’t worry about” “Create what you love but balance that with what will also sell” Marketing:Art fairs as an opportunity to put your works in front of national and international audiences Utilizing demonstrations to show techniques and processes Residencies vs. awards Crossing-over from commercial art to a fine art careerSeeing through the eye of a graphic designer (commercial art) “Insanity is a requirement,” only requires small doses “Don’t give up your day job until you have some indication that your work will sell, otherwise you might starve.” “I do not change my art to cater to what might sell” but it’s okay to have a commercial attitude Arts Education and its influences on the studio practice:“I’ll invent an exercise [for my students] that will lead to a whole series of new artworks for me or vice-versa” “Not only does teaching keep my fundamental skills sharp, it also helps me articulate my thoughts” “Teaching balances the solitude of the studio by giving me a socially gratifying experience” “At this stage in my career, I can make as much money from selling art as from teaching that same amount of time.” “Teaching gives me contact with new ideas that are very valuable.” Demonstrations vs. Teaching Business Accelerator Program & Grants:Career-focused grant program As a pilot program, the artists participating are able to collaborate with the CHF team to form the program Lessons learned: importance of social media marketing to grow your business
Sep 10, 2016
Professionalize Your Studio Practice with Business Training
57:08
Increasingly, artists are being asked to professionalize their art business, but as Cristina DiChiera so aptly recognizes, “In some instances, combining arts and business can be putting a square peg in a round hole,” but it doesn’t have to be with the right resources and training. In this hour-long interview, Cristina talks about her career creating and implementing business workshops for artists with the http://www.arts.ri.gov/ (Rhode Island State Council on the Arts) and http://massmoca.org/ (Mass MOCA), and her recent shift to Visual Arts Development Manager at https://www.brown.edu/ (Brown University). She underscores the importance of tapping resources at the local level through arts councils, professionalizing business practices, and incorporating them into studio time. With the advent of technology and the internet, it has never been easier or more imperative that artists take full advantage of the resources available to them and craft an art business that is sustainable through their artworks sold. She also gave us insights into using crowdfunding as a marketing and fundraising tool and how to choose between grants, competitions, and residencies. Advice for our Business Accelerator Program on how to run a good business workshop for artists:Glean topics from artists themselves Understand the artist’s’ goals Give good overview of the topic/overwhelming overview (make it brief) Tease out each person strength – suggest areas where they can start to run their own affairs Respect the time of participants – want to see artists succeed Service providers are responsible to provide value in our workshops Arts organizations as a tool for artists to up their business game Learn more about CHF’s https://clarkhulingsfund.org/grants/ (Business Accelerator Program) and how you can participate. Artists and organizations are increasing their awareness for business training:Increased ease of usability for social platforms Artists have an increased capability to be their own marketing engine Evolution in business to incorporate a more creative approach Arts have started to change the way we perceive and understand business Artist’s approach problems in a different way that others might not consider – this is a benefit Museums vs. Arts Councils Technology as a catalyst in this shift toward business:More flexibility to manage their own affairs Artist as marketer and business person Relationships shift between artist and collector Relationships shift between artist and gallery Uniqueness of the art professional:Their business and products are a deep reflection of themselves Customers are intrigued by the artist, their background, and the details of their process The actual work is about connection with an audience and building their market Making crowdfunding productive:Set attainable financial goals To succeed, the artist must dedicate a specific period of time to promote the project An artist should think of it as a challenge to connect with people, tell their story, and get an audience excited about the project. Crowdfunding as a step toward becoming marketing savvy Grants, competitions, and residencies – how to choose?Applying for competitions, grants, and fellowships should be a part of an artist’s professional practice. Residencies are about “getting out of your current environment to dedicate your time to your artwork” Buyer beware: “Some online entries could ask you for proprietary, they might ask you for ownership, that when you win their little award, they have full access and rights to your images…”
Aug 21, 2016
Taking the Plunge to Become a Working Artist
01:15:21
Taking the leap into fine art after having a 9-5 job is a difficult decision, but this is exactly the leap that thriving artists need to make. For https://clarkhulingsfund.org/finalists/leslie-hirst/ (Leslie Hirst), a multi-media artist with over 30 years of experience in commercial and fine art, tells us about her recent CHF-funded exhibition https://clarkhulingsfund.org/details/leslie-hirst-objectively-speaking/ (“Objectively Speaking,”) the importance of continuity between shows, following the inspiration without losing the nuts and bolts of actually doing the work, and her transition from graphic design to fine art and teaching Experimental and Foundation Studies at the Rhode Island School of Design. Preparing for an Exhibition:Learn about the supply chain Determine location, transportation, target audience, and space restrictions Establish relationships with suppliers and potential partners Think about your presentation as you’re thinking about creation Plan ahead for unforeseen complications On her recent exhibition “Objectively Speaking:”Interpreting the world and language through visual senses – synesthesia Inspired by Ludwig Wittgenstein’s famous quote, “The world is everything that is the matter,” and its implications for visual art and craft. Exhibition is about “Seeing the world through the physicality of language and bringing the presence of experience into play through language” Artist as inventor, engineer, and problem solver. How the CHF Business Accelerator Grant funded materials, shipping, and transport. Components of brandingInternal motivation in brand identity: “My understanding of the world comes from a variety of sources that are uniquely me…” Strong personal characteristic to a work: Commercial graphic design and cross-over to forms of language Making your interests viable and ensuring you’re the inventor of your career Crossing media without losing your brand identity “Every work that you create should extend into the next thing that you do.” Making the leap from commercial art to fine art:Digital art vs. tactile and manual art Drawing from commercial art experience in your fine art practice Inherent need to communicate with the audience Teaching as a method to afford artwork Recognize the “relationship between lace and digital code” and the core of “all textile work is built upon the same systems that we recreate digital code with.” What’s next:Stronger engagement with the community through public art work Reaching a broader cultural spectrum, more ages, more socio-economic levels, people of different education levels Establishing a solid track record as a fine artist
Aug 05, 2016
Maintaining Momentum in an Evolving Art Career
47:42
As an artist who follows the inspiration as it strikes, https://clarkhulingsfund.org/finalists/etsuko-ichikawa/ (Etsuko Ichikawa) works in a variety of media from performance, sound, and film to glass installations, sculpture, and drawing. She’s known for her http://www.etsukoichikawa.com/Artist-Detail.cfm?ArtistsID=141 (pyrographs) and http://www.etsukoichikawa.com/Artist-Detail.cfm?ArtistsID=252 (aquagraphs), or drawings made from fire and water. She’s also a https://clarkhulingsfund.org/grants/ (2015 Clark Hulings Fund Business Accelerator Grant Finalist). We had a chance to sit down with Etsuko and talk about her next career move as she rebrands herself and her artwork. Her nearly hour-long interview offers an insightful look into public art commissions, the importance of vetting galleries before you work with them, and how to tackle brand management even as your career evolves. Re-Branding Your Art and Business:Following the inspiration vs. following the money How to maintain the momentum of your career without losing your soul Marketing and sales as key components of your business plan Controlling and budgeting for your artwork Breaking into new mediums as alternative sources of revenue Creating sustainable financial systems out of your art career Changing the direction of your work can result in more value being placed on your ‘limited edition’ products Project Management in Public Works Commissions:Know the mission behind your commission Collaboration with organizations, architects, and engineers Use public works as an opportunity to reach beyond the gallery and meet new audiences Public works and grants as alternative sources of income Audience Building:Incorporate a performance element in your artwork Don’t be afraid to include your audience in your process Attend events as shameless promotion of your work Network amongst local galleries, get your face out there Galleries:Creating & maintaining relationships with galleries Vetting galleries you want to work with Establish trust with your gallery Cutting ties with galleries without burning bridges Galleries vs. art fairs Future Directions:Re-Branding and ending previous works Feature Length Films Keep an eye out for http://www.etsukoichikawa.com/Exhibit_Detail.cfm?ShowsID=353 (Radiating Echoes – What is Beautiful?)  Determining what is really important in your life’s work?
Jul 21, 2016
Preserve Your Artistic Legacy
01:04:54
“The creative legacy is not necessarily an issue of résumé, but about the creative spirit itself shown through your works,” states Jennifer Cohen, http://www.poba.org/ (POBA)‘s Co-Managing Director, about their mission and dedication to preserving the creative legacy of artists irrespective of the measure of success attained during their lifetime. In this full hour show, Jennifer underscores the importance of maintaining artistic legacies for artists living and dead, as well as the subtle nuances involved in preserving the integrity and value of artistic works. She also acknowledges the importance of artistic legacy to living artists and collectors. What happens when the artist or art collector is gone?Appraisal, Insurance, and Inheritance Shared Legacy Management Emotional vs. financial value Responsibility to preserve the work’s value Bulk selling and charity auctions as potentially harmful “You have to educate yourself as to how to protect art from dust, from humidity, from light, all these things that will degrade not only its value, but its look over time.” The Importance of the “Great Amateur”Creativity vs. Commercial Success Art vs. Craft Art Collectors and heirs as partners in an artist’s legacy Protect Your Artwork:Physical vs. digital storage Inventorying and Archiving Your Artwork Establishing Provenance through documentation of location and critical dates Parenting your own creative works: “We’re putting a tremendous demand on artists not only to create their art but also to manage and market it.” Preservation and Reversion of CopyrightsImportance of the preservation of artistic intent Preservation of Copyright – Copyright Reversion Act of 1976 gives all artists and their heirs the rights to recapture copyright and to renegotiate the terms of licensing agreements
Jul 11, 2016
Collector: Steward of the Arts
01:06:14
“I would encourage everyone to buy the work that they love and that they can afford,” says https://clarkhulingsfund.org/people/tim-newton/ (Tim Newton), an art collector, Advisory Board Member at the Clark Hulings Fund, and the Chairman of the Board at the http://www.salmagundi.org/ (Salmagundi Club). In this full-hour show, Tim underscores the importance of collecting art to appreciate beauty, while also recognizing the role of art collectors as stewards of the arts. For Tim, this means curating shows of artwork he owns and encouraging others to do the same. Starting your collection:Buy what you can afford Quality over quantity Take time to learn about art “Every collector should have a mentor” Good art stands on its own regardless of the artist’s level of artistry Art Buyers vs. Art Collectors “Collecting artwork should be about the artwork – not investment, not the artist” Current Art Market:Art fairs vs. exhibitions Digital media & virtual artwork vs. the tangibility of artwork Passing on art collecting to the next generation as a great love affair Social media as a tool for art exposure Stewards on a Revolving Basis:Planning for your collection’s future Curate your collection in shows & exhibitions as a service to the rest of the world Art is created for its social impact – let the public appreciate it Art Collectors have a responsibility to their art and the artist Why Artists and Collectors Need Each Other:“The more artists are educated about the things that they could be and should be doing in their art endeavors, it’s a big deal. It does have a ripple effect that is beneficial to collectors as well.” Artists need to create the work and be business savvy enough to make it sustainable. Partnership between artists and collectors is essential to ensuring that the kind of works you enjoy continue to be made “Collectors have a vested interest in supporting the work of The Clark Hulings Fund because what goes around comes around in the collecting world.” On Clark Hulings:“Clark was just one of the most extraordinary painters of the last century.” “He was a genius in the way he did his art and the way he did his business.” On the Clark Hulings Fund’s Mission: “As a collector you may be collecting a terrific artist that really has enormous potential and does wonderful work, but if they can’t make it from the business side and they fold up their easel, that’s unfortunate for them and for the collector that began collecting their work. We need each other.”
Jun 10, 2016
Creating and Teaching Hand in Hand
38:26
Working artists can be both student and teacher; this is the basic premise of https://www.artcantina.com/ (Art Cantina), an online portal described as the Match.com of arts education. For Carolyn (Charlie) Bogusz and LaVonne Ewing, artists need a platform to market and brand their skills as potentially both experts and instructors. Meanwhile, students want easier access to arts education. Art Cantina allows students to find workshops in their local area and desired discipline, and helps them establish (if they wish) a teaching business to support their studio practice. Topics include: Business DevelopmentMarketing your own classes & finding students Why the art world needs its own Airbnb or Match.com Pricing your work and pricing your classes From selling expertise to selling art online Disruption, Connections, and SilosThe “starving artist” stigma and alternative income sources The stigma of online art markets Continuing Arts EducationThe working artist as student Art schools vs. informal arts education LaVonne Ewing Learning and marketing vs. creating and studio time Knowledge sharing amongst professionals & the elevation of artwork through study Art Cantina is a natural partnership for the Clark Hulings Fund: We equip artists to up their business game through education, introductions, tools, and critical project funding, but there is no business without a well-crafted product. For more information on how you can hone your craft and build your business through skills-based workshops, check out https://www.artcantina.com/ (ArtCantina.com).
May 13, 2016
Artist as CEO
32:54
What if an artist treated her project like a project, her business like a business, and became the CEO? https://clarkhulingsfund.org/finalists/vanessa-diaz/ (Vanessa Diaz) is an interdisciplinary artist specializing in sculpture and site-specific installations created from discarded furniture. She reimagines architectural pieces to distort conventional perceptions of how rooms and physical spaces should be used. She is also a 2015 CHF Business Accelerator Grant Recipient. The Clark Hulings Fund is funding and supporting her work “Possibility of an Exit” – an immersive installation that re-contextualizes a house impacted by natural disaster in the upper half of a 5,000 sq. ft. room provided by ArtsUP! Neil Ramsay the head of ArtsUp! says the artist is the “CEO of the project” – specifically that the artist – in this case, Vanessa – is coming in and designing the whole environment. We found that idea so intriguing that we devoted almost the entire show to it. Topics include: Scaling an artist’s business at the pivotal career moment. What does it mean to be the CEO of an art project? The path to being a self-sustaining artist. The bottom line business impact of an art project. Creative control as the CEO. Collaboration as the CEO. Collaboration and branding. Installation art in particular. For more information on Vanessa Diaz, visit http://vdiazart.com/ (vdiazart.com), and be sure to check out http://www.artsupconcepts.com/ (ArtsUP!) as well
Apr 28, 2016
Planning for Residencies, Shows, and Travel
42:33
Residencies, shows, and travel require forethought and planning for an artist to reach an international audience. https://clarkhulingsfund.org/finalists/lauren-frances-adams/ (Lauren Frances Adams) is a painter and mixed-media installation artist, incorporating traditional designs and decoration with contemporary Americana. Her wallpapers depict class struggle and labor movements. She also works as a Full-Time Painting Faculty member at the Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore and was one of our first CHF Business Accelerator Grant Recipients in 2013. Lauren lays out some of the critical issues in arranging travel for an art business. Art that Crosses MediaCross-media work as an academic distinction vs. real world experience Total installations and breaking the boundaries of the picture plane Technology, mass-production, and art The function of labor as a theme ‘Career impact of social issues as subject matter “Those that produce the work are often the least in control of what happens to that work.” Art that Crosses the Atlantic (The Travel Side of an Art Business)International shipping – e.g. when the gallery won’t pay Who pays for insurance Planning ahead financially Visas & travel papers Budgeting time for residencies & travel with studio time and marketing Making art vs. managing the business Painting vs. teaching – cynicism vs. reality Teaching vs. the gallery system Crossing the Hurdle of Grants & FundingWhy writing grants is essential – formalizing your project definition Where CHF’s grant has been pivotal The end goal of a grant project – e.g. being polished LastlyFor more information on Lauren Francis Adams, visit http://lfadams.com/ (lfadams.com)
Apr 09, 2016
Setting Up an Art Business for Scale
51:51
Despite our playful double entendre, the business of securing commissions requires taking proposals and contracts seriously. Large-scale artist https://clarkhulingsfund.org/finalists/molly-dilworth/ (Molly Dilworth) explains the challenges of both producing such works and operating the professional side of the business for scale. Molly’s geometrically inspired site-specific installations across the United States highlight invisible structures and hidden motivations. Her insights on a range of topics from proposals to contracts are crucial: Creating Large-Scale WorksMaking big paintings to be seen by Google Earth Special challenges of large-scale work Dealing with outdoor work and site control (e.g. timing, weather, and location) Technology and remote art creation [see also a https://clarkhulingsfund.org/the-enviable-lifestyle-of-the-working-artist-carolyn-edlund/ (previous broadcast)] Using under-appreciated spaces, everyday spaces, accessible spaces Operating the Business for ScaleRFPs, proposals, and the business of finding commissions Contracts and when you get paid Ensuring clients pay vs. getting burned Contingencies and budgeting for materials, mishaps, and take-home pay Getting a lawyer Responsibility for maintenance and limits of liability Contracts as a conversation Dealing with damage and insuring the work LastlyMolly Dilworth is currently a fellow in the first year of the Tulsa Artist Fellowship and. on April 23rd, will unveil her sculptural commission for a new Denver Light Rail station at 40th and Airport. For more information on Molly, visit http://mollydilworth.com/ (mollydilworth.com)
Apr 09, 2016
Becoming a Five-Day-a-Week Artist
54:45
“You can’t make full time money doing part time work. I paint every day.” – Robert C. Jackson Robert C. Jackson (or Bob, as he goes by in conversation) is a painter who uses his subject matter of balloon dogs, Oreo skyscrapers, and toy dinosaurs to highlight the satirical complexities he sees in the world. He has interviewed 20 contemporary representational artists for his book Behind the Easel, around which the Delaware Museum of Art is forming an exhibition this Fall. Bob explains exactly what it means and digs into what it takes to be a five day a week working artist. This is such an amazing talk that the topics are best expressed mainly as quotations from Bob himself: Getting Started“I was surprised at how many rules people do have – I thought art was supposed to be open-ended.” “I think it’s up to other people to label you.” “Most artists never talk about business and, as a result, most artists never make a living from their art.” If art schools were judged by how many of their graduates made a living from their art: “I couldn’t fathom an engineering department graduating people and saying the majority of our people never get jobs.” CHF and the implied dual major of art and business. “I needed to work five days a week painting to make five days a week salary.” “I thought when I jumped into this career, that there would be a lot more peers.” (who make art as their sole living) “There are no do-overs…. When you make art as your sole living, you’re highly motivated to make it work.” “I don’t feel like there’s a lot of luck in (making a living as an artist); there’s a lot of effort and work to make it happen.” “I can’t believe how little artists are willing to hustle; …as soon as you let your career go stagnant, it’s ending.” “It’s not like people say that when the artists die they get more famous; when they die, they die.” Running Your Business“If you can buy someone cheaper that looks the same, why not do it? Uniqueness is the biggest thing.” “The last gallery you should approach is the one with work that looks like yours.” Making “art that screams for attention.” “I’m not going to paint without a concept or a narrative.” “Realize, when you paint, there’s an audience in the room.” “I need 30 sales a year…” “One of the giant taboos was humor; you’re certainly not supposed to do humor with a still-life, but I’ve had a lot of fun with it.” A Practical Education“I didn’t go to art school; I learned by going up to New York and going to art shows.” “I have never had a collector or a gallery ask me where I got an art degree. They look at my work.” “It matters much more who the teacher is; the degree means nothing, but the learning means an awful lot.” “As for working in the marketplace, (art schools) aren’t teaching that at all.” Selling Your WorkKeep nothing sitting in inventory. The most expensive mistake is keeping your costs tied up in inventory. Showrooms and selling one of a kind work: “Art is still a visible, tactile experience.” “The galleries are people like you and I; artists are notoriously difficult. The galleries are my salespeople – my representatives.” “Most artists underprice themselves; I don’t think they do the math.” “No one is chasing you down. If you sit and wait for a gallery to call you or someone to discover you, no one comes knocking at your door.” “You’re remembered by the bigger pieces.” LastlyWhy Bob wishes he was The Flash. Why Bob likes podcasts (like this one): “I love what I do, but it’s one isolating career… Listening lets me glean little tidbits of what’s working for other people.” For more on Bob and his work, visit http://robertcjackson.com/ (RobertCJackson.com)
Mar 19, 2016
The Catch-22: Mixing Media & Crossing Genre
31:59
As a painter, illustrator, and storyteller, https://clarkhulingsfund.org/finalists/cheryl-gross/ (Cheryl Gross) combines her signature humor and urban appeal to create intense narratives. Currently, she is working on a large project titled: The Z Factor, a fictional work of drawings and text depicting the persecution of a new race and a resulting third civil rights movement. She is also 2014 Clark Hulings Fund Grant Finalist. What are the challenges when a fine artist wants to cross illustration, graphic design, film, poetry, blogging, and the graphic novel, all in a way that takes on current issues. ContentsBlending fine arts and commercial arts Parsing an art career as a way to make a living: "Sometimes you just need money" Mitigating genre bias by breaking barriers between types of media Crossing media from visual art, to the graphic novel, blogging, and film The catch-22 of crossing genres and not having a pigeonhole to hide in Being "Dr. Seuss on crack"! Using the online art markets Pricing commissioned work Cheryl's insights on the fundamental struggle of refusing to be pigeonholed while seizing a place in the market are a valuable addition to the learning program of CHF. More info on Cheryl Gross and her work, as well as her blog and book are at http://cmgross.com (CMgross.com)
Mar 08, 2016
Art and The Politics of Geography
21:47
"I started painting bananas to exoticize myself; it started as a joke and developed into a commentary on belonging.' https://clarkhulingsfund.org/finalists/gonzalo-fuenmayor/ (Gonzalo Fuenmayor) is a multi-disciplinary artist who has worked in painting and photography, but is best known for his charcoal drawings which, in their precision, resemble black-and-white photographs. He is also a 2014 CHF Grant Finalist. His comments on the role of the artist in an emigre environment (and in general) are fascinating. ContentsArtist as foreigner/diaspora: exoticizing oneself & belonging to a place Artist as historicist: the banana trade between West & Central/South America Artist as commentator: the role of the artist in politics and art as vicarious subversion Artist as tease: playfulness and deconstructing the phallic image Marketing yourself in an environment of creative misunderstanding A public internal conversation vs. dialogue with your audience The fear of prostituting oneself by entering the marketplace Discipline and Ambition - the habits of consistency For more info on Gonzalo and his work, visit http://gonzalofuenmayor.com (gonzalofuenmayor.com)
Feb 27, 2016
No Separation Between Work and Life
41:30
"When people sheared sheep 100 years ago, it wasn't just work, it was their life; work wasn't a separate thing.' Art and business are like that. https://clarkhulingsfund.org/finalists/laura-petrovich-cheney/ (Laura Petrovich-Cheney) is a sculptor whose work mirrors the human experience, full of transformation, second chances, reinvention, and resilience. She is also a Clark Hulings Fund 2015 Business Accelerator Grant Recipient for her current solo exhibition at Salisbury University Art Galleries, "Piece by Piece". Her comments on building a self-sustaining art career are profoundly on point. ContentsIncreased sales by adapting art format to the market Artist security through multiple income sources around the art The preeminence of the toolset for managing an art business The pivotal moment when funding makes the difference The vision of Clark Hulings for working artists Planning an art career backwards Hoofing it - marketing prior to a show Marketing as sharing your story "There's no separation between work and life anymore." Creating an "authentic conversation" with collectors and an audience http://bit.ly/1oNPVqM (#abstractartist) http://bit.ly/1oNPZ9S (#americanrealism) Good old fashioned business networking Not flinching from rejection For more info on Laura and her work, visit http://lauracheney.com (lauracheney.com). Laura’s exhibition runs from Jan 15 thru Feb 25 at SU art galleries in Salsibury MD. If you’re on the eastern seaboard or have a friend or relative in MD, have them stop by the exhibition. The show runs from noon to 5pm each day and information is on the https://clarkhulingsfund.org (Clark Hulings fund) website.
Feb 19, 2016
Serious Business: Marketing Your Art in a Flat World
19:41
Being serious about your business as an artist is more than paperwork; it's also mindset. Bette is a working artist, gallery owner, graphic designer, and author of the best-selling book: Talent is Just the Beginning - An Artists’ Guide to Marketing in the 21st Century. Sue is Vice President for marketing for the Messenger Art Collection, one of the largest, most diverse private collections in the U.S. Together, Bette and Sue are based in Santa Fe, NM, and run Ridgeway and Roderick Art Services, which provides hands-on career evaluation and marketing to artists, galleries, and collectors. Bette and Sue delve into three key imperatives for the working artist. Take Your Art Seriously As a BusinessHobby vs. Business: What Art Has in Common With Every Other Enterprise The Importance of a Stunning Website to Catch Collectors' Eyes The Minimum of 20+ Pieces and the Collateral Needed to Break Out Market Yourself for the Flat WorldDevelop Communities Around Your Art Practice Distinguish Your Appeal in a Global Search Environment Develop A Mindset for Success"Collectors Are Interested in Who Did It" Thriving Requires: Differentiation + Promotion + Multiple Income Sources For more information on Ridgeway and Roderick Services, visit http://RandRartServices.com (RandRartServices.com)
Feb 07, 2016
More Wall Space: The Collector’s Journey To Connoisseurship
40:15
What drives most art collectors, and how they decide what to collect, might surprise you. https://clarkhulingsfund.org/people/stephen-zimmerman/ (Stephen Zimmerman) is an art collector and co-founder of the Western Art Society of the Eiteljorg Museum. He also serves as an advisory board member of the Clark Hulings Fund for Visual Artists, and is based in Indianapolis, Indiana. Stephen explains that collecting is driven by self-made aficionados who often attain a level of education about a given artist and stewardship of a school of art that far exceeds that of the official mediators of taste. As a result, collectors are often driven by an intense curiosity, passion, and (profoundly) personal relationships with individual artists. Whether your an artist, art patron, or another collector - this episode is a joyous exploration of the a commitment that is anything but a hobby. What Art Collectors Know That We Don't  Collecting as diversification, therapy, and self-education (the collector as autodidact) "The wisdom of collecting original fine art" Art patrons and art collectors Collectors are internally driven, not externally persuaded. Art collecting is discovered, not taught. Generational differences among collectors "Anyone with a genuine interest at any economic level can acquire a collection." Art collecting is about the "subject matter & consistency of approach". The collector as rebel vs. follower. Collectors vs. tastemakers. Curation does not necessarily confer conversance in the arts. Personal relationships with artists (not curatorial direction) drive collectors' choices of whom to collect. "Helping artists who need business acumen enter the ring with the world's great visual artists" Why join a non-profit board, as an art collector? Art collecting is not a hobby. Steve also discussed: The Mission of the Clark Hulings Fund:Real artists get up and work every single day; they need business training to enter the ring with the world's great visual artists... Some need legal advice, some accounting advice, some marketing advice, and some need help connecting with collectors whose acquisitions are often driven by personal relationships with artists.CHF Collector SalonsCollector salons offer collectors access to their peers (and insights into peer collections), as well as an insider's view of working artists to watch and emerging markets for new work. Indianapolis: The Best Kept Secret in Fine Arts(Except to anyone who has stepped out of the airport)! Stephen is passionate about placing Indianapolis into its proper role as a Mecca of the fine arts. Given the guests we've had from Indianapolis, and the events we've touted to our audience and supported with our media, we quite agree! With that in mind, for more information on the Eiteljorg Musem visit http://www.eiteljorg.org/ (eiteljorg.org)
Jan 26, 2016
Stripping Down to Your Soul and Selling Art Like Hotcakes
34:53
Building your brand without sacrificing your craft requires both finding your public and going deep into the artist. Jane Robinson is a contemporary abstract artist, living and working in Michigan, who specializes in acrylic and mixed media. Jane also conducts workshops for other artists under the banner "The Business of Creativity" as well as a monthly meetup group. She was once, also, a felony probation officer and writing pre-sentencing guidelines helped her tap into her creative side. ContentsArt & business as different muscles "The Business of Creativity" The grant as the launching pad "No one will care about your art career as much as you" Being an "artpreneur" - integrating art and business. Beyond the canvas - creating the brand around your art. Getting ahead of your business - branding yourself as pulling the sale rather than pushing it. Quirky as an asset - the brand as both you and the work. Identifying vs. expressing your brand. Discovering your brand by other people's experience of you - art shows, art fairs, gallery receptions, open studio events... Finding your public - web as a global marketplace Social media as the artist's storytelling medium - going beyond posting your work Business building vs. sacrificing craft - the false dichotomy Devote as many hours to business building as you do studio time Reinvest 40% of your earnings into your art business Aligning the operational areas of your business and your life The solo artist and the creative tribe The essential infrastructure of an art business Being objective about your own work Building a cohesive body of work Studio time first, then find your audience The journey of not worrying Building an e-mail contact list around your shows Stripping down to your soul and "selling like hotcakes" Technology on the way: virtual painting and non-local creation More information on Jane Robinson and her work, classes, and Meetup group, is athttp://janerobinsonabstractart.com ( JaneRobinsonAbstractArt.com)
Jan 26, 2016
Art Curation and Curriculum
35:23
We all share a planet. Frank Juliano is Executive Director of Reeves-Reed Arboretum in Summit, New Jersey. He makes it his mission to bring innovation and community building to all aspects of the Arboretum’s programming and operation. He is well known in visual art circles for his curation of exhibitions at the Arboretum’s Wisner House and gardens. He lives in New York and studied Music, Theatre, and Dance at SUNY New Paltz before turning to his current career in non-profit management. Topics Include:Crossing over from performer to curator/talent acquisition Going in for the money: reflection and authenticity Art as social consciousness and means to a social end Purpose of art as transformative Stewardship of the planet Making art and curriculum interactive Curation: choosing artists Effective art curation Collaboration between artists as a career path Balancing mission with money Market savvy art pricing The usefulness of mistakes Why go to Summit, New Jersey! Information about the Arboretum is here: http://reeves-reedarboretum.org (reeves-reedarboretum.org) If you find this content valuable and want to foster even more material like this, a modest donation would be very meaningful: click http://clarkhulingsfund.org/donate/ (here).  
Dec 10, 2015
Planning the Future of Your Art
23:22
COLLECTORS, ARTISTS, and GALLERIES need to think about the future of their works and collections. In this insightful podcast, Kristin Gary, a private dealer who specializes in appraisal, bankruptcy, and related divestiture issues, encourages us to think ahead. Kristin manages Kristin Gary Fine Art, a private gallery that includes European Old Masters, 19th century European, American 20th Century and select Contemporary works. Topics include: Challenges of breaking up significant collections Owning art as temporary. Planning in advance for some kind of divestiture Art fairs and the auction world vs. the gallery world The importance of dealers banding together to create events Thinking ahead as an artist Thinking ahead as a collector Protecting yourself and your art pieces when entrusting them to a gallery (e.g. the risk of foreclosure) The importance of filing UCC The importance of a formal tracking system Balancing commercial viability with choosing pieces you like Is genre bias a problem? Essential business skills artists must acquire Waiting until the future to think about the future is a mistake. Don't miss this 24-minute podcast. Listen now, or download and take it with you on your phone or mobile device. Kristin Gary's site is at http://kristingaryfineart.com (kristingaryfineart.com). If you find this content valuable and want to foster even more material like this, a modest donation would be very meaningful: click http://clarkhulingsfund.org/donate/ (here).
Nov 14, 2015
The Enviable Lifestyle of the Working Artist
40:24
Carolyn Edlund is Executive Director of the Arts Business Institute, a non-profit that offers creative business solutions to artists and craftspeople. She is also the Founder of Artsy Shark, a forum that targets artists AS small business owners with marketing and sales tips. Carolyn flips a lot of the concerns artists may have about growing their careers as a business into positive opportunities for full artistic expression. Her emphasis on the lifestyle of the artist as one of glamour and freedom is insightful and balanced by the call for creating a skill set to further one's deepest professional aspirations. Topics Include:The fine arts vs. arts & crafts barrier Art for its own sake vs. art as a business How artists build a business without sacrificing their craft How "repeat business builds business" The catch-22 of selling out for money or not being good enough for it The artists' enviable lifestyle of glamour & freedom Referring to all customers as collectors Branding: How artists create their brand Marketing: How it has changed - keeping up with the times Essential marketing tools & skills for artists Scalability: managing audience growth The opportunity of technology for fine art and business scale: 3D Printing, Laser Cutters, etc Listen now, or download and take this 40min episode with you on your phone or mobile device. The Arts Business Institute is at http://artsbusinessinstitute.org (artsbusinessinstitute.org) and Artsy Shark at http://artsyshark.com (artsyshark.com) If you find this content valuable and want to foster even more material like this, even a modest donation is meaningful: click http://clarkhulingsfund.org/donate/ (here).
Nov 07, 2015
Funding the Well Defined Art Project
28:12
https://clarkhulingsfund.org/finalists/tim-kennedy/ (Tim Kennedy) is a representational painter who works to present still lifes, figures, and landscapes with immediacy and intimacy. He is also Senior Lecturer at Indiana University Bloomington and was a 2014 winner of the Clark Hulings Fund Grant. He was born in Buffalo, NY and did his MFA at Brooklyn College CUNY. Articles on his paintings have appeared in American Artist and Watercolor magazines. Tim helps us understand.... Topics include:The Role of Project Funding in Boosting an Art Career Creating a Well Defined Project Proposal for a Grant Application Being a Visual Artist in a Photographic World (e.g. Instagram) Coops and Other Gallery Relationships The Challenges of Large Pieces Insider Keys to an Effective Grant Proposal Listen now, or download and take this 42min episode with you on your phone or mobile device. Tim's website is http://timkennedypaintings.com (timkennedypaintings.com). You can also see the video on challenges of "working large". If you’re an arts industry professional, collector, or business specialist, or a working artist who would like to be interviewed, visit our http://clarkhulingsfund.org/teach-learn/ (Teach and Learn) page. If you find this content valuable and want to foster even more material like this, even a modest donation is meaningful: click http://clarkhulingsfund.org/donate/ (here).
Oct 24, 2015
“Making It” as an Artist in Business
42:55
Brandon Kralik is an internationally exhibited post-contemporary figurative painter who employs classical oil painting methods “with a current vision to create a visual mythology.” Born in the US, he has spent 13years of his 20-year career in Sweden, where he currently lives and works. His work is found in the collections of Steven Tyler, The Crown Princess of Sweden, Matthew Barzun, and Carlos Santana. He studied Fine Art at Western State College of Colorado, Art History at CUNY (Manhattan), and painted under Norwegian figurative painter Odd Nerdrum for 3 years before opening his own studio. Brandon helps us understand how, exactly, one "makes it" in business as an artist. Topics include:The Tenacity of Choosing an Art Career vs. "Shadow Careers" What Does "Making It" Look Like? The Series of Affirmations That Amount to Success Artist As Digital Nomad! Contact Management As The Key To More Art Sales The Role Of Semantics In Describing Your Art & 'Personal Brand' Thought Leadership As Networking Bleeding For Your Art - As A Business! The Critical Role Of Knowledge Transfer Clark Hulings and Cultural Change through Business and Beauty Revising the History of Art From the Road Listen now, or download and take this 42min episode with you on your phone or mobile device. Brandon's website, where you can find his latest work and links to Facebook and Twitter, is http://brandonkralik.com (brandonkralik.com) If you’re an arts industry professional, collector, or business specialist, or a working artist who would like to be interviewed, visit our http://clarkhulingsfund.org/teach-learn/ (Teach and Learn) page. If you find this content valuable and want to foster even more material like this, even a modest donation is meaningful: click http://clarkhulingsfund.org/donate/ (here).
Oct 17, 2015
Genre Boundaries, Gallery Opportunities
43:25
Philip Koch, is a professor at the Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore, specializing in landscape realism. He has also been a Clark Hulings Fund Grant Review Panelist for 3 years running. In this episode of the Thriving Artist Podcast, Philip talks about the significance of genre/style for an artistic career, and the business end (selling things) via galleries and dealers. Topics include:Crossing the abstract/realism divide Genre biases and reaching one's artistic/career potential The avante garde in light of its predecessors Education and the role of history and tradition Getting work into galleries The universal grammar of art Being a panelist (and applying for a grant) at CHF Listen now, or download and take this episode with you on your phone or mobile device. Philip's website is http://philipkoch.org (philipkoch.org) and you can meet other members of the CHF grant review panel on our panel page. If you’re a working artist, feel free to visit our http://clarkhulingsfund.org/grants/ (Grants page). If you’re an arts industry professional, collector, or business specialist, or a working artist who would like to be interviewed, visit our http://clarkhulingsfund.org/teach-learn/ (Teach and Learn) page. As always, even a modest donation is meaningful; and that page is http://clarkhulingsfund.org/donate/ (here).
Oct 10, 2015
Impact of Financial Literacy on Artistic Purity
34:38
https://clarkhulingsfund.org/finalists/elaine-grogan-luttrull/ (Elaine Grogan Luttrull) is a CPA and founder of http://minervafinancialarts.com/ (Minerva Financial Arts), a company that increases business and financial literacy for artists and arts organizations. She also runs the Business & Entrepreneurship department at Columbus College of Art and Design in Ohio. In this episode of the Thriving Artist Podcast, Elaine provides insights on the types of financial decisions that directly impact the purity of one's art! Topics include:The big financial questions (budgeting, pricing, taxes...) Tax issues artists face How do artists choose an entity type? Impacts of entity types (for taxes, health care types, creditworthiness) Overcoming the emotional barrier of art vs. business concerns The “Starving Artist” stereotype How financial literacy impacts artistic purity What financial decisions say about an artist Pricing of art: intrinsic value vs. commodity Financial literacy as a path to more money Listen now, or download and take this episode with you on your phone or mobile device. Also, read Elaine's recent post on http://clarkhulingsfund.org/pricing-your-art/ (pricing art). Minerva Financial Arts is at http://minervafinancialarts.com/ (minervafinancialarts.com) If you’re a working artist, feel free to visit our http://clarkhulingsfund.org/grants/ (Grants page). If you’re an arts industry professional, collector, or business specialist, or a working artist who would like to be interviewed, visit our http://clarkhulingsfund.org/teach-learn/ (Teach and Learn) page. As always, even a modest donation is meaningful; and that page is http://clarkhulingsfund.org/donate/ (here).
Sep 28, 2015
Estate Planning for Artists and Collectors
47:23
Jim Grace is an attorney for the arts, and Executive Director of the Arts & Business Council of Greater Boston. One of their major programs is Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts of Mass., which does free legal services for the arts including seminars on legal topics. Jim is also co-author of the http://joanmitchellfoundation.org/ (Joan Mitchell Foundation)'s workbook on estate planning for artists. In this episode of the Thriving Artist Podcast, Jim provides insights for art collectors and artists on estate planning. It's OK to suffer for our art, but we don't want it to make others suffer. Some of the topics we must consider include: The importance of estate planning for visual artists Healthcare proxies, living wills, and powers of attorney Goals, options, and tools - not letting the tail wag the dog Options for supporting causes Artist endowed http://www.aspeninstitute.org/policy-work/nonprofit-philanthropy/artist-endowed-foundations (foundations) What happens to your collection? Valuation of your art, including unfinished works in your inventory, formal appraisal, and tax consequences What happens to your unfinished work? What about your collection of fellow artists' work? Representation (agents, galleries, and dealers) Document archives (image licenses, releases, gallery consignment contracts) ARTWORK ARCHIVE (tracking inventory, cataloging collections) Planning for maintenance, storage, conservation, and distribution of works & supplies Getting approval from donee organizations Rights and joint authorship / collaborators Copyright is your life + 70 years Legal services for artists via local http://artsandbusinesscouncil.org (arts and business councils) Collaborative space for organizations and artists Hitchcockian bird attacks Listen now, or download and take this 47-minute episode with you on your phone or mobile device. If you’re a working artist, feel free to visit our http://clarkhulingsfund.org/grants/ (Grants page). If you’re an arts industry professional, collector, or business specialist, or a working artist who would like to be interviewed, visit our http://clarkhulingsfund.org/teach-learn/ (Teach and Learn) page. As always, even a modest donation is meaningful; and that page is http://clarkhulingsfund.org/donate/ (here).
Sep 19, 2015
Artwork Archive for Artists & Collectors
31:09
What started as a labor of love for someone's mother, became a modern tool for art collectors and visual artists. John Feustel is co-founder of Artwork Archive, a cloud-based tool for tracking art inventory and managing consignment records, sales info, and competition history. John's solution works on any device (phone, tablet, desktop) and takes the worry and hassle out of cataloging a visual artist or art collector's works/collection, while providing solid financial intelligence and even heat-map based location maps. "Galleries love artists that use Artwork Archive, because it makes the consignment paperwork so easy,' says Feustel. The Clark Hulings Fund is sponsoring discounted access to Artwork Archive. Says Elizabeth Hulings, founder of the fund, "I have looked at all kinds of ways to track my father's work, and I love this product. I'm migrating everything of Clark Hulings onto it." Because we at the fund feel so strongly that artists can maintain control over their own work only if they track it, Artwork Archive is a natural partner with our mission, and it is the first tool that we're offering and endorsing.  Topics for this podcast include:What is Artwork Archive & what does it do? Community development and artist-driven design Why track your collection? How is art displayed in Artwork Archive? Privacy and security, backups, exportable data, and device neutrality Day in the life of an Art Collector with Artwork Archive Day in the life of an Artist with Artwork Archive How feedback guides development How to get the discount [http://artworkarchive.com/from/chf (get the discount here)]. John Feustel brings a lot of experience with technologies as well as business, in his own role as a startup founder. Of course, his mother is the visual artist who inspired the tool, and it was she who originally shaped it with her feedback and her own art career. The website for Artwork Archive is http://artworkarchive.com/from/chf (artworkarchive.com). If you’re a working artist, feel free to visit our http://clarkhulingsfund.org/grants/ (Grants page). If you’re an arts industry professional, collector, or business specialist, or a working artist who would like to be interviewed, visit our http://clarkhulingsfund.org/teach-learn/ (Teach and Learn) page. As always, even a modest donation is meaningful; and that page is http://clarkhulingsfund.org/donate/ (here).
Sep 09, 2015
Competitive Strategy for Working Artists
35:34
P.A. Nisbet (pronounced "nesbit") is a painter of outdoor landscapes, based in Santa Fe, and this year he's a panelist at the http://bit.ly/questforthewest (Western Art Society's Quest for the West). Before his career in fine art, he was a commercial artists (illustration and graphic design). He's quoted as saying "no artist is going to survive without being a business person." In this episode of The Thriving Artist Podcast, he answers questions about the fundamental tension between being effective as an artist and effectiveness of growing and marketing a body of salable work. Topics include:Knowing your audience Business best practices Commercial viability vs. imitating commercial success The tension between art as creation and art as business (distinct but inseparable) Artistic clarity - intrinsic personal vision as a component of commercial visibility Collaborating effectively with galleries Doing your own marketing vs. relying on galleries Quantity of artists & its effect on gallery collaboration Quantity of work & its effect on gallery collaboration Market awareness and production values: sizes, price points, speed of production Holding your own with galleries: filling orders v.s. producing art How to price your art: competitive pricing and transparent pricing Market awareness and competition for gallery space The working artist as social artist: the value of going to parties Quest for the West This 35-minute episode is a treasure trove of critical insights for creating and managing a career as an artist. In particular, the focus on working with galleries and exploration of how to price your work are gold! Listen now, or download and take it with you on your phone or mobile device. P.A. Nisbet may be reached at http://panisbet.com (panisbet.com) If you’re a working artist, feel free to visit our http://clarkhulingsfund.org/grants/ (Grants page). If you’re an arts industry professional, collector, or business specialist, or a working artist who would like to be interviewed, visit our http://clarkhulingsfund.org/teach-learn/ (Teach and Learn) page. As always, even a modest donation is meaningful; and that page is http://clarkhulingsfund.org/donate/ (here).
Aug 22, 2015
Project Management for Artists
30:05
Meredith Bergmann is an American Sculptor who both creates public monuments & sculpts on a private scale. She lives in NYC, and has created the Boston Women’s Memorial (2003), is currently working on the FDR Hope Memorial for Roosevelt Island, and has also created the 9/11 Memorial at Cathedral of St John the Divine. In this episode of the Thriving Artist Podcast, Meredith helps us understand what goes into managing large scale art projects. Topics include: The trials and tribulations of doing commissions, especially large public art ones Managing project scope, objectives, and expectations Dependency on 3rd parties (e.g. foundries) Contracts and payment by project milestones (not time) The financial side – getting paid in chunks without knowing how long each check is supposed to last Why do your best work even when the money isn’t there? “The biggest skill is not to panic.” Special issues sculptors face vs. other visual artist. Not being limited by genre biases The influence of motherhood Marketing strategy – then and now Meredith Bergmann is an insightful guest, and anyone doing large, commissioned projects can’t afford to miss this 30-minute episode. Listen now, or download and take it with you on your phone or mobile device. Meredith Bergmann may be reached at http://meredithbergmann.com/ (meredithbergmann.com) If you’re a working artist, feel free to visit our https://clarkhulingsfund.org/grants/ (Grants page). If you’re an arts industry professional, collector, or business specialist, or a working artist who would like to be interviewed, visit our https://clarkhulingsfund.org/teach-learn/ (Teach and Learn) page. As always, even a modest donation is meaningful; and that page is https://clarkhulingsfund.org/donate/ (here).
Aug 15, 2015
Creating the Middle Class Artist
21:43
Special Edition: 3rd Annual CHF Grant to Visual Artists https://clarkhulingsfund.org/people/elizabeth-hulings/ (Elizabeth Hulings) is daughter of Clark Hulings and Director of the Clark Hulings Foundation. In this episode of the Thriving Artist podcast, Elizabeth explains how to change the culture by funding, training, connecting, and equipping working artists. Topics include: Creating the Middle Class Artist (vs. stars and starvers) A “Kickstarter” for art and culture Why artists need capital Charity vs. business development for artists Patronage, not parentage – cutting out the middle man A big tent for artists – style agnosticism Exchanging the expertise of artists and art industry professionals Why spread the word: Artists wanted! Elizabeth lets us see into the world of the working artist in this 22-minute episode, and explains what is needed to make thriving artists the norm. Grab the mp3 to listen on the train or the drive home. If you’re a working artist, feel free to visit our https://clarkhulingsfund.org/grants/ (Grants page). If you’re an arts industry professional, collector, or business specialist, or a working artist who would like to be interviewed, visit our https://clarkhulingsfund.org/teach-learn/ (Teach and Learn) page. As always, even a modest donation is meaningful; and that page is https://clarkhulingsfund.org/donate/ (here).
Aug 06, 2015
Growing an Economy with Artist Entrepreneurs
41:02
Shannon Linker is VP of the Arts Council of Indianapolis and is liaison on arts issues with organizations throughout Indianapolis. She also directs the Arts Council’s contemporary fine art Gallery – Gallery 924. In this episode of The Thriving Artist podcast, Shannon helps us understand how art communities are built and economies grow by funding and training the working artist. Topics include: How are arts councils faring with slimmer budgets and fewer galleries The crucial distinction between an art market and an art community How funding individual artists (not just arts organizations) impacts a community How working artists begin to thrive Critical blind spots and needed business skills that challenge working artists The artist as small business owner (accounting, copyright, legal issues, contracts) The stigma behind art as a business How arts councils facilitate collaboration between artists and art industry professionals (as well as the organization itself) For the artist: ingredients of effective art exhibitions & the importance of a cohesive body of work Helping artists create a market for their work and achieving community buy-in Supporting the arts as an ECONOMIC force – how art revitalizes neighborhoods and local economies Being assertive, not passive in marketing yourself as an artist and putting your work out there The needs of the ‘barrista artist’ (the emerging artist with a part-time job) One industry leader’s personal vision and inspiration (plus Heavy Metal!) Shannon Linker is an incredibly articulate thinker, and it comes across in this substantive and inspiring 41-minute episode. If you’ve ever wondered how it actually works – beyond the rhetoric – how arts tangibly grow an economy and foster entrepreneurship, you’ve GOT to listen to this episode. Do so now, or download and take it with you on your phone or mobile device. If you’re a working artist, feel free to visit our https://clarkhulingsfund.org/grants/ (Grants page). If you’re an arts industry professional, collector, or business specialist, or a working artist who would like to be interviewed, visit our https://clarkhulingsfund.org/teach-learn/ (Teach and Learn) page. As always, even a modest donation is meaningful; and that page is https://clarkhulingsfund.org/donate/ (here).
Jul 31, 2015
The “Lurid Truths” of the Working Artist
48:39
https://clarkhulingsfund.org/finalists/watie-white/ (Watie (pronounced “Waddy”) White) is a thriving American artist living in Omaha, Nebraska. whose works appear internationally in museum exhibitions and galleries as easily as the sides of building in public spaces. Watie creates public art and public-works related art and delivers business-oriented workshops for artists. In this episode of The Thriving Artist podcast, Watie reveals the inside realities of treating your art as a business rather than a martyrdom. Among the insights are: Who among artists gets business training The advantages of smaller markets, and the importance of creating an artist community around you Creation vs. distribution, and how being an artist does not mean being a monk Self-reliance and the artist’s identity Stepping into the unknown with your career The allure of public art, and the ‘lurid truths’ of pulp Crossing boundaries, and interior vs. public expression Watie’s initial marketing strategy and take on professional success The myth of doing things differently and the significance of a watershed moment Watie is a natural storyteller, and this meaty, 48-minute episode, delivers substantive taste of business-focused commentary without setting foot in a classroom. Listen, now, or download the mp3 and take it with you on your phone or device. If you’re a working artist, feel free to visit our https://clarkhulingsfund.org/grants/ (Grants page). If you’re an arts industry professional, collector, or business specialist, or a working artist who would like to be interviewed, visit our https://clarkhulingsfund.org/teach-learn/ (Teach and Learn) page. As always, even a modest donation is meaningful; and that page is https://clarkhulingsfund.org/donate/ (here).
Jul 25, 2015
Art on Your Own Terms
34:07
C.W. Mundy is a successful American impressionist painter who also routinely sells out enthusiastic workshops for professional artists. His spouse, Rebecca Mundy, is his business manager. Together, they live in Indianapolis where they’ve based their partnership and career. In this episode of The Thriving Artist podcast, the duo reveal the keys to their longevity as an art/business team and the secrets of C.W.’s reach and fame as a visual artist. We ask the Mundy’s about: The requirements for making a business out of one’s art: financial, collection tracking, marketing, fulfillment, communications, events The role of teamwork and building brand recognition How the industry has evolved and the role of digital media, especially video The duty of successful artists to teach and the role of teaching in the creative process Gallery divorces and the nexus of spirituality and art Bucking the trend of flocking to the coasts or the temptation to join an artist colony Defining success for yourself, and showing your art on your terms You’ll want to sit down, or take a run or drive, with this slightly more than half-hour episode and listen to what a globally renowned visual artist is saying about thriving as a working artist. If you’re a working artist, feel free to visit our https://clarkhulingsfund.org/grants/ (Grants page). If you’re an arts industry professional, collector, or business specialist, or a working artist who would like to be interviewed, visit our https://clarkhulingsfund.org/teach-learn/ (Teach and Learn) page. As always, even a modest donation is meaningful; and that page is https://clarkhulingsfund.org/donate/ (here).
Jul 18, 2015