ArtId Art Blog
It almost goes without saying that people love stories _ we root for the athlete with the story that affects us the most, we watch the same news report over and over because the story compels us, we even eat at a certain restaurant more often if we appreciate the chef's personal story. The same is true with art buyers.
Imagine you are at an art fair and you are selling your landscapes. There are 5 other artists selling landscapes at the same fair. If a buyer is out there looking for a landscape painting, chances are that buyer will buy a painting from the artist whom he/she feels a sense of camaraderie with personally.
How do you create camaraderie? Tell your buyers your story. Make them feel that the way you came about making your landscapes is far more compelling than the other 4 landscape artists at the fair. Not only will a patron be more likely to buy your art, but they will remember you, they will tell your story to their friends and create priceless word of mouth advertising for your work.
Recently, I saw the power of story-telling in action. An art consultant friend of mine was showing over 50 artists to a big retail client. Out of a wide range of excellent work, the client chose one artist to work with because that artist had an interesting story, one that pulled together his personal life with his artwork. The retailer knew the work not only had merit and salability like many of the other artists he saw, but that it also had a story he could sell to his retail customers. The artist was awarded a huge opportunity based on the power of his story.
As artists, we often like to believe that the quality of our work should determine how well it sells. But let's be real - selling art is like selling any other product on the market, it has to be good and have the most appealing package.
5 Ways to Effectively Tell Your Story to Sell Art
- Ask yourself why it is you are making the art that you are making. Is it because of where you grew up, some life changing experience that happened to you, an obsession you had from childhood, because of a job or career that you had, or a technique you discovered while fiddling around in your studio?
- Write your story (in no more than several paragraphs) in a way that captures your reader's attention. If you are not a great writer, hire a friend or freelance writer to do it for you. Try to use the first person voice in your story so you can bring the reader in more immediately.
- Copy that well-crafted piece of writing into your bio, your brochures and everywhere you can. You could even base your business logo on some aspect of the story and use the story as a basis for building your visual brand.
- Embody the story. Re-tell your story to anyone and everyone who is interested.
- If a piece/tangent of the story is recognizable in your work, all the better. A buyer will feel like they are taking your incredible story into their homes and are in some way too a part of it.