How to Write an Art Press Release

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A well-written press release is a great way to promote your art. Press releases can be picked up by journalists and used as the basis for news stories, so they can generate a lot of publicity. However, press releases follow a specific format. If you want readers to take your press release seriously and journalists to cover it, you must follow this format. Writing an art press release may seem somewhat daunting at first, but the process gets easier with practice.

Things You'll Need

  • Word Processing Program
  • Decide what topic(s) your press release will cover. Make sure you have a specific, newsworthy topic. A press release is primarily written to inform an audience about an art event of some sort. For example, if your art is showing in a gallery, the show would be a great subject for a press release. An example of a poor subject for an art press release would be a new series of paintings you have started. Until they are finished and on display, there is not much that a member of the public can do with that information. When you write a press release, make sure you can answer who, what, when where and why.

  • Write a headline that grabs the reader's attention. To comply with the standard press release format, the first letter of each word in the headline should be capitalized. To be effective, your headline should tell the reader exactly what they can expect to learn from reading your press release. It should be clear, concise, compelling and as short as possible.

  • Add a short subtitle that gives a little more detail about the content of the press release. For example, if your headline is "XYZ Gallery Displays John Doe's Work," your subtitle could be "Exhibition Open To The Public For 14 Days." Your subtitle should be short and sweet to help the reader get a better idea of the subject of your press release and make them want to continue reading.

  • Write a brief summary paragraph. This summary paragraph should give the reader the "meat" of your story. In one to four sentences, answer who, what, when where and why.

  • Write your "lead sentence," the first sentence of the body of your press release. In the lead sentence, you must give the reader a quick breakdown of the information you want him to take away from your press release.

  • Write the body of your press release. This is your chance to "flesh out" your lead sentence. Go into more detail about your subject, give the reader background information, and add interest and personality with some quotes. However, press releases are supposed to be brief, so avoid going into unnecessary detail. Remember, stick to the facts. Keep the text interesting and newsworthy.

  • Sum everything up with a short concluding paragraph.

  • Attach a short biography of yourself and a description of your work, called a "boilerplate."

  • Include contact information for you or for your agent, if you have one.

  • Enter "###" to signal the end of your press release.

Tips & Warnings

  • Write in the third person, even if you are writing about yourself. Also, use the active voice. For example, if you are writing a press release to publicize a show, it is better to say, "XYZ Gallery Displays John Doe's Work" than it is to say, "John Doe's Work has Been Placed On Display At XYZ Gallery." Using the active voice instead of the passive voice will provide a stronger impact.

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