Books for Artists in Business

June 30, 2010


The following books are available at Amazon, (titled of each books  is a link to it’s Amazon page) and I’ve included their official descriptions for you.  Each has been highly rated by readers and each are below $17.  Each of these books are good resources and provide a wealth of info for getting your ducks in a row.  If you can’t afford them, try your local library.  It’s free there!

I’d Rather Be in the Studio!” by Alyson Stanfield

The Artist’s No-Excuse Guide to Self-Promotion offers practical approaches that help you sell more art and build an art career that lasts. Alyson B. Stanfield, the art-marketing guru behind ArtBizCoach.com, shares self-promotion tools that have enhanced the careers of thousands of artists. You’ll learn how to: (1) Introduce yourself as an artist so people want to know more; (2) Nail your artist statement to discover the right words for all of your marketing messages; (3) Expand your mailing list and use it to cultivate collectors; (4) Create marketing materials that outshine the competition; (5) Become a media magnet so buyers come to you; (6) Take advantage of your Web site and blog to build a bigger audience; and much more. It would be great if there were a precise formula for getting your art into galleries, museums and private collections. But every artist’s path is different. That’s why I’d Rather Be in the Studio! provides easy-to-follow self-promotion practices that help you find your way at any point in your career. Match Internet marketing strategies with sincere personal skills to take charge of your career.

‘The Artist’s Guide: How to Make a Living Doing What You Love” by Jackie Battenfield

Using a “tough love approach” to pursuing a career in the visual arts, Jackie Battenfield expands on her highly successful classes and workshops to provide a comprehensive guide for both emerging and mid-career artists.

Providing real-life examples, illustrations, and step-by-step exercises, Battenfield offers readily applicable advice on all aspects of the job. Along with tips on planning and assessment, she presents strategies for self-management, including marketing, online promotion, building professional relationships, grant writing, and portfolio development.

Each chapter ends with an insightful “Reality Check” interview, featuring advice and useful information from high-profile artists and professionals.

The result is an inspiring, experiential guide brimming with field-tested techniques that readers can easily apply to their own career.

“ART/WORK: Everything You Need to Know (and Do) As You Pursue Your Art Career” by Heather Darcy Bhandari

Find Out What They Didn’t Teach You in Art School

The most comprehensive guide of its kind, Art/Work gives artists of every level the tools they need to make it in an art world so competitive one dealer likens it to “The Sopranos, except nobody gets killed.” Whether you’re an art school grad looking for a gallery, a mid-career artist managing a busy studio, or someone just thinking about becoming a professional artist, this indispensable resource will help you build your career and protect yourself along the way.

Unlike other creative professionals, visual artists don’t have agents or managers. You have to do it all yourself, at least until you find gallery representation — and even then, there are important business and legal issues you need to understand to stay in control of your career and ensure you’re being treated fairly. Heather Darcy Bhandari, a gallery director, and Jonathan Melber, an arts lawyer, walk you through these issues so that you can essentially act as your own manager and agent. They show you, for example, how to tackle business basics such as tracking inventory and preparing invoices; how to take legal precautions like registering a copyright and drafting consignment forms; how to use promotional tools like websites and business cards; and how to approach career decisions such as choosing the right venue to show your work.

In addition to drawing on their own experiences, Bhandari and Melber interviewed nearly one hundred curators, dealers, and other arts professionals, in cities across the country, about what they expect from and look for in artists. The authors also talked to a host of artists about their careers and the lessons they’ve learned navigating the art world. The book is full of their entertaining anecdotes and candid advice.

No matter what kind of artist you are — or want to be — this book will help you. Art/Work covers everything you need to know to succeed, saving you from having to learn it all the hard way — and letting you spend more time making art.

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