Wondering what it takes to get your work hanging in a gallery? Sylvia White offers some insight on why galleries sometimes reject artwork.
Have you listed any items in the FNO Marketplace yet? Now you can sell your artwork online through FNO! It's free to list your items, complete fee information is listed here.
And if you do plan to list items in the Marketplace or even just post photos of your work in the FNO Community, be sure to check out Julie's tips on taking good photos of your work!
As always, if you have any particular topics you'd like to see covered here, or if you'd like to contribute an article to the FNO newsletters - drop me a line!
FNO Newsletter Editor
Top 10 Reasons Why Galleries Reject Artists (It's Not What You Think!)
by Sylvia White
Most artists harbor the fantasy that if they could only find one art dealer who loved and believed in their work, their career would be set. They secretly believe that there
exists a special person who can catapult them to fame. Many artists spend most of their careers searching for “the perfect gallery.” And, like all quests towards perfection, it is neverending. If they already have a gallery, it’s not good enough; if they are looking for
their fi rst gallery, they dream about the moment when someone sets eyes on their work and offers them a solo show immediately. The harsh reality is that having a gallery love your work is only one very small part of what goes into the decision to represent an artist.
From a gallery’s point of view, adding an artist to their stable is much like adding a stock to one’s portfolio. There are many complicated factors to take into consideration, and liking the “stock” usually has very little to do with the decision. There is no doubt that
while liking the artist’s work is certainly the first criterion, there are several other hurdles that must be overcome before a gallery will commit to an artist. Understanding those hurdles will help you to present your work effectively to galleries and detach yourself from the inevitable sense of personal failure that follows when a gallery rejects your artwork. Read more
FNO Tip: Taking Good Photos
Upon landing in your online shop, your photos are the first thing that speaks to your customers about your work. If the photos are out of focus, pixelated, confusing, or poorly lit, you've lost a potential customer. If you don't take the time to share excellent photos of your items, don't wonder why you aren't making any sales. It is the most important thing about online selling; good photos of your work pay off.
Fortunately, you don't need to be a professional photographer to take decent photos of your items. Here are some tips:
- Get a tripod for your camera. An inexpensive small table top tripod will ensure a steady shot.
- Natural lighting won't let you down, but using the flash on your camera always will. Flash photography will change the colors of your items, create glare, or otherwise misrepresent your craft, period. So, set up your display near a window, or if you go outside, take your photos in the morning or afternoon when the sun is not directly overhead.
- Open your camera's manual and learn about the white balance setting. It's easier than you think, will only take a second, and you will be glad you did when your pictures are brighter and cleaner. If you use plain white for your background, make sure it is truly WHITE by white balancing your camera. I often see grey-white, underlit backgrounds and it looks terrible. (Another great solution to giving your stuff great lighting: try googling "creating your own at-home lightbox" for photographing small items. It's easy and cheap to make your own mini photography studio!)
- Place your items on non-distracting and complimentary backgrounds. You don't want to use colors or textures too similiar to your item that will cause it to blend in. Contrasting elements will make your item stand out, but choose wisely and make sure the placement of your artwork "makes sense". Being consistent with your backgrounds will help brand your shop.
- Take photos at various angles. You will want to include a close up (using your macro setting on your camera will help you achieve clear close ups) when you list an item to sell. Take advantage of uploading as many pictures as allowed per item! Let your buyer see your item completely so they know what they're getting. I see so many people just uploading one photo of their item. Those people shouldn't wonder why they aren't making any sales either.
There are so many online resources on this topic so feel free to dig into this topic on your own too. Good photos = more online sales. Bad photos won't get you anywhere.
Members: If you would like my opinion on your photos, shoot me a note with your FNO profile, I will be honest! You can find me here.
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Quick info about our affiliate program:
Be sure to hand people your business card or a custom FNO Affiliate Flyer when you refer them to be sure you get credit when they join as a Pro Member. If you want to learn more, go here - where you can print your own flyers to hand out (to do this, you must have an affiliate number, all Pro Members automatically have one, if you are a free member, you must request one).
- We pay $5 for each new pro member you send our way.
- We pay quarterly via Paypal.
- You may apply your affiliate credit towards next year's renewal.
- Referrals can come in via word of mouth or through special tracking links you use in emails or online.
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