How to Get Your Art Noticed

Get your art noticed by engaging with your audience.
Get your art noticed by engaging with your audience. (Image: Jupiterimages/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images)

Before there was anything known as "social media," Andy Warhol had already created it, albeit in analog form rather than online. He was a consummate relationship builder -- according to the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts website, a genius at getting his work noticed, one fan at a time. An artist has a natural ability to create works of art. What does not always come naturally is the ability to market your art. Nevertheless, there are simple steps you can take to help get your art noticed.

Create a website. Professional artists use the Internet as a platform to show the world their art. Whether you create it yourself or have a website designer help you, creating and maintaining a website is a key step to increasing your visibility as an artist. Use the site to post photos of your artwork, along with your biography, artistic resume and contact information. Websites can be basic or intricate. The important thing is to have an online presence that enables anyone, anywhere to view your artwork and contact you.

Use social media tools. Sign up on Facebook and Twitter. On Facebook, you can create your own page, devoted exclusively to your artwork, where you can post photos of your pieces and direct people to your website. You can invite friends to become fans of your page. As friends write comments on your page, others in their network see them and can become engaged by viewing your art. Twitter is another useful tool. Set up a Twitter account for your artwork and then "tweet" news, such as "Just finished my newest piece," prompting your followers to go check out your website.

Write to artists whose work you admire. An established artist might see great promise in your work and be willing to give advice and share contacts. She might even serve as a mentor to launch or expand your art career by shepherding your work into the hands of galleries or dealers.

Connect with art dealers and galleries. They can provide the stage on which your art will shine. Start with connections you already have and work from there. You might also contact smaller local galleries. Approach contacts with your portfolio to generate interest. Set up appointments with the decision-maker -- frequently a gallery curator, owner or the art dealer -- and be prepared to discuss your work, including your materials and creative process.

Enter art shows. Entering your artwork in art shows or craft fairs can be an effective way to gain attention for your work. People who come to art fairs come to view and buy arts and crafts, so you have a ready-made audience for your work. Selling your art is one of the benefits of setting up a display of your work, but the exposure you get is just as valuable. Hand out cards as you speak to those who express interest.

Ask your local library for an exhibition. Local libraries often put together exhibits highlighting items of interest from the community. Alternatively, ask whether there is space for more permanent exposure. You might consider donating one of your pieces for permanent exhibit. Choose as many works as they will accommodate or have room for on their walls and help organize the display space. Libraries sometimes have enclosed glass exhibit shelves that house smaller pieces. Call your insurance agent and check into having your artwork ensured before hanging it in public areas.

Teach a community art class. There are many community organizations that offer art classes. Libraries, nature centers, county recreational programs and non-profit arts centers frequently hold art classes for beginners or hobbyists. Offer to teach one of these classes for free or for a fee. As your reputation as an art teacher grows, so does your reputation as an artist.

Tips & Warnings

  • Do not sign a contract with a gallery until you have reviewed it carefully with an attorney. Review the commission percentage and compare it to standards for the locale by seeking advice from art dealers or lawyers who specialize in representing artists.

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