More on Getting Your Work Seen

December 29, 2009

So I’ve covered a lot of bases about self promotion in my November posts and yesterday, but what about the person that is quiet as a mouse? What about that person that has a hard time speaking up, talking to people out loud, and constantly wishes they could telepathically send stuff? I happen to be a girl that used to be afraid to ask a store clerk a question.  No one that knows me today would ever believe it but it’s true, but it is.  Being able to speak for yourself lies in believing you have something important to say, show, or tell.  Don’t ever be timid about your work.  It’s YOUR work, no one elses, so respect it as unique and yours. Amazingly you’ll find that others will follow your lead and also treat your work with respect. This will go a long way towards helping you develop the confidence you need to be your own best representative.  I can’t stress enough how important it is for an artist to be their own best agent and also how important it is to do that without being a pest. Having confidence is one thing, being a “pest” is another.

What is a pest?  Someone who is always trying to get something out of others, hammering at them until they get what they want.  They often try to make others responsible for their needs. Consider the word pest a nice way to put it.  An example is when I was curating the ArtsNow Gallery.  I always sent out specific details about how art work needed to be ready to hang, bottom line.  Almost every show there would be one artist that popped up with their work either unframed, not in a a display box or with any sort of hanging assembly.  What was I supposed to do with that?  How was I to handle the work without damaging it?   Did they mean for me to hold their work during  gallery hours so it could be seen?  Should I lean it on the wall on the floor?  You get the picture. Just don’t be one of those.   That’s not the sort of impression you want to make on a curator, potential customer, gallery or anyone.

In fact, a professional artist that I know is one of my best remembered exhibitors.  Even though she was leaving town sometime before the exhibit, she arranged to have her work, ready to hang, in my possession complete with her inventory list and everything I needed ahead of the show (bio, artist statement, etc.).  That is the ticket.  Even though the artist wasn’t even in town it was easy to show their work.  Be the one that is remembered for making it easy to display and share your work with others.  Be the one that provides a complete package.


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