Sunday, February 14, 2010

When the Art Can't Speak for Itself

@ 2010 Cottonwood Study, 8x10 oil Private Collection

In my last post I listed a few of the things a solo-preneur must handle. Creator, bookkeeper and marketer come to mind. I'm adding videographer to the list.


My pal, Canadian artist Mavis Penney, and I were discussing the many aspects of what it means to be an artist. Among them is the dreaded M word. At least in my world it's dreaded.


Marketing brings to mind balding used car salesmen in polyester pants and plaid shirts screaming deals from the boob tube. I imagine a late-night infomercial, touting the virtues of a little plastic thingy I can't live without, which will cost less if I buy them by the gross. Then there's shipping and handling...


Mavis reminded me that authentic, honest marketing, the kind coach Molly Gordon supports, is really no different than having a conversation. No shouting. No pointing. No free shipping if you order now.


I don't have a storefront, or even a late-night infomercial at my disposal. I do have a video camera. And a blank wall. A tripod for the camera. A website. I even wrote a script so that I wouldn't have to pause and stammer while trying to remember that terrific ... whatever it was I was going to say.


Thirty or so takes into the project my voice is shot and so is my camera battery. I'm beginning to think that maybe this wasn't such a good idea. I feel like a complete idiot chatting away to myself in front of this unblinking eye. I feel even worse watching myself.


So this week I'll practice some more, refine my presentation and post it on my website. I'll share a conversation with my viewers about my One Square Mile project, how I start, what I've learned from limiting myself to a single tract of land. It'll be available to my newsletter readers only. Kind of a special gift to them. If you're interested, sign up here.


I'll squeeze it in between painting sessions, because after all, I am a painter.


When all is said and done, it's the artwork that speaks the loudest. That and a plaid shirt.

5 comments:

Kaylyn said...

If we were really into marketing, we probably wouldn't be painting!

However, the artist's business plan Sue Smith put together really puts the business of art into a language and perspective that keeps the art, and the plaid shirts, at the forefront. I recommend it highly. And her blogs are very thought provoking and interesting. Great artwork, as well.

http://ancientartist.typepad.com/ancient_artist_developing/ see the 'resources' on the right hand side of the page. It's a big document, I printed it two pages to a sheet of paper to minimize the printing!

Karine said...

Ooooo...a video!!! How exciting! You are much, much braver than I am. My hero.

Patricia said...

Kaylyn, thanks for the Sue Smith tip. The information is terrific - and so is she!
Karine, braver...nnnnnnno, I doubt it, you who paints gorgeous huge canvases. This was a leap before you look moment!

Fanboy Wife said...

I really like the loose brushstrokes in the painting; it gives it a nice texture.

Patricia said...

Thanks Fanboy Wife, I appreciate your kind comment.