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Art Business Tips: How to Get Art Commissions



If we're being honest here, it can be really hard to know how to get your art seen -and- valued. It's not taught often enough in the world or even art schools.


Art professional practices!


So, how do we do it? How do we get our art seen and develop an audience of people who will hire you for a commission or show your work in town.


See below for a primer!



There are MANY ways to do this, and people to approach, but here are some ideas.



Step One: Do your research


Research interior design firms in your area, or, if you don't feel ready for that, check into local coffeeshops.


Step Two: Develop or curate a consistent body of work


You may work across the board or with many mediums - that's great! However, you want to present a consistent body of work when you are sharing it with a potential client. We have seen amazing submissions from artists that submit, say, ceramics work - they will share contemporary ceramics installation work and end with photos of plates they also make. Excellent work - very strong, but are we, a gallery, exhibiting plates? No.


Share work that conveys what you have made that is strong and also shares what you think they will see in their space.


Step Three: Make a Proposal


Make a proposal in a single pdf that includes the following information:


Name

Contact information

Website

Social media

5-10 images

Descriptions of images, with medium, year made, measurements, and weight

A general 2-3 paragraph statement that conveys your work style, mediums used, the type of art you make, and also why it would be perfect in that space.

Prices


Make this a general statement that -you will tweak- to the place. A high-level interior design firm versus a community coffee shop will have different needs and audience - consider this as you move forward to the next step, and tweak language accordingly.


Step Four: Consulting your list of businesses, send them an email with your proposal.


Yes, this is likely a cold email. That is why you do your research. You will want to send your proposal as the PDF, and an email that briefly explains you and why you love the business, or why you and the business would be a good fit.


Stay organized with this work! We highly recommend using a project management app like Monday or Asana to keep track of who you have contacted, date of contact, followup details, and details of project. Use this in tandem with your artist inventory work. (Advice Page to come!)


Step Five: Don't give up!


This is totally worth it and works! It enables you to be the organizer, rather than requiring a gallery or other service to do it for you.


If you need additional support on creating a consistent body of work or creating a proposal, we have live, hands-on online art business courses to walk you through the process!


Good luck!

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