Things You Need To Think About Before Taking Commissions

Many artist make their money through taking commissions.  I personally don’t do this because of the way my life works.  I have a little baby and certain medical issues that make it difficult for me to commit to a time frame.  However some of you may have an interest doing this so I thought I give you some things you need to thing about before you start.

Have at least 10 samples of whatever you are going to take commissions of.  This gives people a good idea of what to expect from you.  Doing these also gives a reference for how much time it will take you to complete a painting and how much supplies will be used.

Require good reference photos, especially when you’re first starting out.  You may be able to work from a bad reference photo later, but in the beginning, you’ll need good ones.  You won’t be able to see the detail you need from bad reference photos, and sometimes while a photo might look cute, it just doesn’t work as a painting.  Don’t be afraid to tell the person that and possibly lose the commission.  It’s much worse to have someone who’s unhappy with something you did for them.

Using a photo editor of some sort will help reduce the number of changes.  You can show them different backgrounds, different lighting, change it to black and white…  It doesn’t have to be an amazing edit.  It just has to give them a general idea of the painting.

Have a written contract explaining the cost, time frame, and the amount of changes allowed.  Whether that’s two or none, or maybe have all editing done during the photo editing and then nothing else.  Whatever works best for you and your style of painting.

Also take a deposit.  This weeds out people who aren’t serious, and then if they don’t take the painting, you’re not out the money.

Often times people get burnt out from the headache of commissions, but if you follow these things, it’ll reduce the amount of problem that come with commissions.  So good luck!

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1 Simple Thing To Boost the Views On Your Website

There’s one very simple thing you can do to boost the views on your website.  Post links at the bottom of your blog posts to other relating blog posts.  It’s almost too simple isn’t it?  Having a search function isn’t enough.  They won’t use it.  Even if you have another post that might interest them, it’s just too much effort to type anything into a search bar.  So tell them about all your other wonderful posts, which have links to other wonderful posts and other wonderful pages.  Then, they get funneled into the world that is you!

Also, don’t make your link look like a link.  Don’t have it be http://www……  Change it so that it says “my art print is available here,” or have just the title of the post as the link.  No one wants to click on something that looks like a link to another page.  You can see all mine below.

So put links at the bottom of your posts and you can watch the little analytics bar go up.  It’s fun.  You’ll love it!  If you try it out, let me know how it goes for you.

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Are You Violating Copyright?

With my family visiting I didn’t have time to record a video for you guys, so I thought I’d introduce you to another artist that I follow.  She has a really good video about copyright.  Since I use reference photos A LOT for my paintings, I found this video very helpful.  When doing more realistic style artwork reference photos are very useful.

I haven’t bought reference photo CDs yet, but the two sites I use for reference photos are pixabay.com and pmp-art.com.  There are plenty of other sites you can use.  These are are just the two I use the most.

If you use reference photos, where do you get them?  I’m always looking for more places to find reference photos!

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Do I Need A Website?

Yes, you need one, and no just using a social media page doesn’t work because those can disappear.  Also pages like etsy can disappear as well.  You need a home base to drive everyone to that has all of your information.  You can link as many pages as you want to your website.

You also don’t have to have money, and you don’t need to know html to set it up.  There are plenty of free sites with templates to use.  I’m a fan of WordPress.  You can set one for free at wordpress.com and then switch to wordpress.org once your needs grow.

So go make one because you need it, and then tell me about it!  I can help you get started with wordpress.com if you need it.

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What’s Good About GooglePlus

Sorry this post went out a little late today.  I was having computer issues.  :/  Anyway, Google+. I know it’s another social network that you just don’t want to do, but here’s what it can do for you.  Google is the number one search engine, and they’ve created a social network.  Guess what?  They want you to use it.  If you use it, Google makes your stuff more searchable.  Isn’t that nice?

Also the people on Google+, USE it!  It’s their favorite.  They’re almost obsessive, which is kinda creepy, but nice for your website.  Once I post my blogs on Google+, the traffic to my website jumps.  So make a page, and a community because they’re just waiting for new one’s to join.  Go ahead.  Do it.  It’ll be awesome!  You can even hang out with me here.

Have a Google+ page?  Tell me about it.  What do you like?  What do you not?

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Selling Art On Storenvy

If you’re looking for a free place to start selling your art, Storenvy could be the place for you.  Ok, it’s not totally free, but it cost you nothing to set it up and list your pieces.  There’s only a charge once something is sold.  Your page is also completely customizable so it can look just like one of your pages on your website.

Storenvy isn’t as know as places like etsy and ebay, so you will have to market your Storenvy page, but you should already be doing this for your own website.  If you just need a place for your artwork to sit and funnel people to, this might be a good option for you.

You can check out my storenvy page here.  Have a storenvy page?  Has it worked for you?  Why, or why not?  Tell me about it.

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