Checklist to become an professional artist
Yes, this is the question I keep asking to myself. So I have created a checklist to reach the goal of becoming an professional artist. I am not saying that these are the only steps to follow but its a guide line that I have created for myself and thought to share with everyone.
If you are already an professional artist and reading this blog, I would love to hear back your suggestions and advise to add it in my checklist.
1. I think to become a professional artist, obviously need to create more art. Build your portfolio. First thing come to my mind is Website. Build a professional website.When I was thinking to build my website , I was concerned about the fortune it will cost but you don’t have to pay hefty money to get your website done. Now a days you can build your own website. Upon researching I found that we can create our own website very easily by paying few quids monthly or yearly.
There are many web services you can find who charge you little amount on monthly or yearly basis to host your website. There are templates that you can use to build your website. Purchase your domain and you are ready to go.
To name a few to purchase a domain is Godaddy.com, Names.co.uk which can provide you domain as well as website building services.
If you have a look it is very easy to setup your own Website to maintain your online portfolio.
Yes, you can use social media like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter etc, for online presence but having your own website is the first step towards your goal.
Before submitting your entry for any major art competitions or exhibitions, I would say have your website up and running. Most of the art competitions organisers look at your work through your website.
2. Build your online presence. It’s like marketing yourself. I know we are artists and would like to focus on creating art instead of marketing but to become a successful and professional artist we need to do self marketing. Get yourself on all social medias, create a YouTube channel and demonstrate your work. There are many ways to get public attention. You can offer art demos on your YouTube channel, timelapse videos. Offer online tutorials. There are many ways you can build your followers.
3. Join art organisations, there are many art organisations where you can become a member as an amateur artist and develop your skills. There is a benefit of joining an art organisations. You will get to learn how fellow members who are an professional artists work. You can learn new techniques and develop your skills. If you are an animal artist you can join Association of animal artists, TWASI. Other art organisations like Society of all artists – SAA, The Society of Women artists. If you love working in colour pencils you can join UKCPS.
By joining these art organisations gives you confidence and opportunities to exhibit.
4. Art Fairs- Try to get into art fairs. You can find local art and craft fairs where you can book a stall and show your work. You can sell art prints, original framed artworks, greeting cards, handmade items or you can merchandise your art on Coffee mugs, t-shirts etc and sell it at your stall. I am not saying you have to do a big investment in it. If it’s your first time try small. To make your stall attractive get the banner with your business name on it.
You can also do demos of your work at your stall. People are often interested in observing working artist. They are curious to know how artist create his/ her art. From art fairs you can build your contacts. Don’t forget to keep your business card handy. If you want commission work. Let people know you are open for commissions.
5. Participate in different art competitions. Even if you don’t win at least you can earn an experience. You will get to know, art markets. You can get an idea of what kind of work are getting selected and know the types of work in demand.
6. If you love showing people your techniques and skills. You can organise workshops. Try to approach local art clubs and devised a plan to deliver a workshop or if you have a space at your house or a studio, you can organise a workshop at your own place. If you are living in around nice countryside or near beach and have nice place, you can arrange art holidays and invite people to offer arty holidays.
These are list of things that I have created. Please comment and share your experience and I will update this checklist. I will appreciate advice from experienced and professional artists.
For those who are wondering from where to start, now you have a general idea to take steps towards your goal.
Last and most important thing I would like to say is stay inspired, motivated and keep creating art. Never stop, don’t give up on your dreams. It will take time but it will happen.