The San Diego sunshine, crisp ocean breeze and melting ice-cream cones on the pier have my Summer vibes in full effect. One thing about the summer here in beautiful San Diego is star studded, costume clad cesspool of fun and awesomeness we call Comic-Con. For those of you that followed my early work, you know the geek in me can’t resist the opportunity to paint some of my favorite heroes. Batman, Joker, Star Wars etc. This year I’m excited to drop some new comic-con 2017 themed original artworks from Deadpool to cat woman (in honor of all the strong ladies out there of course!!)
Why Deadpool, you ask? Lets just say uh….we can relate haha. Original works of art are available for sale on my store here. Just a final tidbit, remember to do something creative today. Inspire yourself even just just the slightest bit every day and watch how quickly it snowballs into a more passionate, creative you 🙂
Now here’s the kicker: It’s going to take time and effort.
I know what you’re thinking “Oh great, now she’s going to just say that tired old spiel of ‘work hard and you’ll make money’,” But surprise!! It’s not just that for once. How amazing, right?! I’m actually going to explain some of the key goals and what you can do to achieve them. Alright, let’s get onto what your here for, the good stuff, that is.
1: Money Doesn’t Come Quickly
If there is one thing that’s certain, it’s that making money as an artist can be tough. I mean we’ve all heard the age old adage of the starving artist right? It could take a few months to get your first sale, maybe even a few years and you’ll probably find yourself wanting to torch anything art-related after a point. Don’t give up there though, because when you get that first payment for your work you’ll have that sweet, sweeet moment when you finally get to say “worth it”. (Just… uh… don’t spend it all on coffee within a week… I di- my friend did that).
2: You Have to Network and Market Your art
This is how you can go about the actual process of trying to make money; about 90% of your first sales are probably going to come from referrals by friends, family, or other connections. So get yourself out there; start telling people about what you do and make sure that as many people as possible know that you’re an artist that’s looking to sell their work or do commissions. Carry pictures of your work in your phone and set up social media accounts, websites, etc.; basically any places where people can find you and see your work. Art is subjective and we as artists tend to view our own work more harshly than a perspective buyer would so keep your head up and keep trying.
3. Art is basically a business
Shhh…Here’s the secret. (Saaayyyy whatttt…. its not about the art?) Well yeah…and no. Of course some talent will have to work its way onto your canvas but I’ve seen artists generate a good amount of money selling work that consists of scribbles or magazine clippings taped together. How? They have their business model down better than the average hobbyist artist; Now, if you’ve ever started a business you know its an insane amount of work, and that’s no different for marketing yourself as an artist. People don’t just swoon to you in droves, no matter how good you are skill wise. I’ll touch more on this aspect later but if you want to start learning more about the business side of art; pick up a few business books, podcasts, videos, or whatever it is you can squeeze in the time for (and don’t forget to hit that follow button for my updates, because I’ll have posts on this coming very soon).
4. Get yourself out there
The only way to sell art is to let go of your preconceived notions about your own work and get it out there. Vend at local fairs or try popping up a small table on the sidewalk (just check with local laws first). Try contacting gallery owners, cafes, restaurants, interior designers and pretty much anyone else you can think of who might need something art related; this will get you a good amount of exposure and immediately place you above all the other artists that don’t do this. I actually started in a small, off the beaten path cafe and ended up generating quite a bit of sales with pieces ranging from 80$ – 300$; so don’t overthink it, just get in where you fit and keep moving up from there.
5. Public Murals
Public Murals generate a huge range of viewers to your art. If they like it and you make it easy for them to find you, they will find you. Collectors are hunters; they like to acquire things that not everyone has. They are trend setters, trail blazers and have a taste for uniquity; if you put yourself in their path and they love what they see, they won’t hesitate to support an artist and scoop up a sweet piece of original art to hang on their walls.
6. Establish Value
The more your original art begins to make its way into homes and businesses, the
more valuable your work becomes. Constantly re-assess your “value” and try to keep logs of everyone that buys your work. This isn’t always possible, especially if third parties are selling your work but always make yourself
available to your buyers. There is nothing better than receiving a photo of your work proudly hung in their house, or a short text about how happy your art piece made someone; those moments mean more than the money (to me, at least) because they’re when I get to remember why I started: For the passion and love of the craft. Although money is necessary and definitely nice to have, remember that it really isn’t everything and what is really important is that you LOVE what you do.
Stay tuned for my next article: Making Art a Business
What’s the difference between coffee and espresso, you ask?! What about House Coffee vs Single Origin Coffee? “How dare you?” sneers the listless barista as his gaze peers into the very fabric of your soul like you’re supposed to automatically know the difference between a latte and cortado. Okay, baristas don’t actually say that (mostly), but we’ve all felt it (Don’t hate me barista artist friends haha). All puns aside, having spent countless hours touring some of the best coffee shops with my hubby, I see the look on one too many coffee shop first timers. With the wave of art-adorned coffee shops following the yellow brick starbucks road (Venti… Tall… What even are… Whaaa?) I just had to shed some light on all of this craziness. Here are a few of the tips and tricks for coffee lovers that I’ve learned along the way.
1: Single Origin:
Okay, ask your friendly neighbourhood hipster, and they will say that this is the crème de la crème of coffee but all that this phrase means is that the coffee bean came from a single, traceable coffee farm; sometimes it’s even traceable to a specific lot. Does it mean its better? Well…Not
necessarily, depending on your own personal flavor palette.You might love it! Orrrrr… It may pucker your face so badly that you run for the hills. Well… maybe not run because how bad can coffee actually get, right? Think of it like wine tasting: the important part is that you tried it and got the experience. If trying new things is your cup of tea or… errrr… coffee in this case. Long story short, it’s just coffee… Slightly more expensive coffee, but usually fresh and yummy.
2: House Coffee:
This is just any coffee that a restaurant or cafe chooses to use as their “default” or “basic” coffee; So unless you’re going somewhere for specialty coffee, house coffee is usually pretty tame and similar to the brands you buy in the store. That is, if it’s not at
least slightly better. Keep in mind that this doesn’t always apply to places that roast their own coffee, or even buy their coffee directly from a coffee roaster. Coffee that comes in whole bean form from the roasters is usually fresher and more flavorful, and don’t I’ll touch more on that process later…
3: Cold Brew:
This is when Coffee is allowed to sit in water for several hours, usually 12 – 24 hours to be exact. Sometimes you’ll even find the occasional 48 – 72 hour brews. The coffee slowly leaches out into the water and creates a beautiful, smooth, and slightly thicker feeling brew. The caffeine content is also usually higher than the caffeine in hot-brewed coffee, which is pretty greeaat (especially on those days where rolling out of bed is a chore in and of itself.)
Espresso in a nutshell is a small shot of concentrated coffee. The coffee beans are ground super fine and hot water is pushed through them to create a beautiful,
dark, foamy, and ultra-concentrated coffee (a ubercoffee if you will). It’s best served fresh while there is still a foamy “crema” on top and taken more like a shot of tequila (either sipped on or gulped down) then your standard cup o’ Joe. If you add water to this shot it basically turns it back into regular coffee but a coffee shop will call it an *cue pretentious accent* “Americano”.
All in all, don’t let the artsy atmosphere intimidate you (We’re all just people). Try a little bit of everything but be forewarned, once you try a really good coffee it’s hard to go back. You’ll know it when you taste it. Lastly, breathe and ask questions if you need clarification before you place your order, It happens all the time and an informed decision is usually a good decision 🙂