Curating Your Artistic Life

Curating Your Artistic Life

You don’t need a marketing degree to own and develop your own brand.  You also don’t need to put everything out there for your audience to see. Your artwork, your products, your digital footprint, your studio space, and your personality all contribute to developing your brand and your professionalism.

This blog post outlines 4 places to begin thinking about adapting, curating, and documenting your creative life in a brand-conscious way but still leaves room to be authentically you!

Curating Online: Instagram and other social media networks are a great way to see processes and see a bit into “behind the scenes.” This could mean seeing work in progress, seeing studios or workspaces, or perhaps sketches.

Be strategic about what you post on which days. Always have a why behind that decision. The filters, fonts, social platforms, colors, language, and images you use all contribute to your online brand identity.

Space Curation: Besides online, you can see this curation in person with studio visits or an open house. Spaces are cleaned up and staged for the gallery owner visit or the big buyer stopping to view their commission.

At previous studio configuration and open house workshops, artists have talked about setting their spaces up for a show, closing off other areas, and showcasing what they want to sell. Product placement and merchandising in your studio are key.

Website Curation: Curate your website. Artists use their websites as a professional portfolio. A rookie mistake artists make is to put everything they have made on their website. This web space needs to be refreshed, curated, and clean. Your website is not a database and nobody wants to see or navigate through everything you have made. Takedown old work, update your pieces when they have sold, and keep your website relevant. For some artists who work in multiple media, the question of which media or how many comes up often. Again, only put up what’s relevant.

Curating Yourself: Think about how you present yourself as an artist. First impressions always count. The way you dress and your personality also impact how people see your art. This doesn’t mean to change everything about you or always dress office professional. This also doesn’t mean you need to change to appear more “artistic.”

Think about how you and your work relates and how you can present your art through yourself. If you create wearable art, why not wear your designs frequently. Or, do your homework and learn how to talk about your art or pitch your “elevator speech” when needed if someone inquires about what you do. Being able to concisely explain your artwork demonstrates your seriousness to your creative craft.

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