After years of stitching, I never really set out with the aim to sell.
How things have changed, because I do now.
And although I don’t have an online sales platform yet, one is in the offing.
So, it really comes back to that age-old question. Do you make to sell or do you continue to go your own way, create new work and push your own boundaries?
As a practicing textile artist, my opinion is that to do the former is certain death to your creative spirit, so the only way I see forward for any artist wishing to sell their work is to continue to be creative.
Now that may mean some work will simply not resonate with your audience – and that’s the risk I suppose, of our creative freedom.
In my very first gallery exhibition, I made a series of small works titled ‘Happy Houses’.
They were fun, playful expressions using sinuous shapes, vibrant colours, and odd angles.
I believe they sold out, but would I want to make them evermore? Of course not – although from time to time I do look back on them with new visions of how I could apply that same theme differently.
At the crux of the matter, for me, and I suspect most textile artists, is the need to create new work.
Perhaps it’s all about the challenge?
Sampling – that vast arena of trial and error is another avenue that often leads to both expected and unexpected outcomes – and therein lies the magic because it’s often those ideas that come without warning that are the way forward to creating new work.
And there’s the plus – the excitement.
As artists, we need to feel the excitement of that creative chase.
It begins with an idea. It germinates into a melding of technique and materials. It satisfies a need within us.
And that simply can’t be achieved by creating same-old, same-old.
So, if you wish to sell your work, my advice would be this:
- find your audience
- continue to create work that resonates within you
- use new techniques and materials only if they add to the work you’re creating
- hone your marketing and branding skills
- remain professional in your presentation and on-point in the messages contained in your work
- get on top of your social media
- be organized and on top of all paperwork, images and pricing
- price fairly
- present your work in pristine condition
And, may your sales increase.
All views and opinions expressed are my own, except where acknowledged information is included from other sources.