Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Book Review: How to Survive and Prosper as an Artist

Are you looking for the perfect gift for that art school graduate in your life?

How to Survive and Prosper as an Artist: Selling Yourself without Selling Your Soul offers practical and encouraging tips to help a young artist build a career selling paintings.

The author began as an artist herself, and is a career coach and advocate for artists.

There are many aspects of running an art business, such as: creating presentations, promoting and marketing, handling public relations, pricing a painting, dealing with galleries, and applying for grants.

She begins the book talking about psychological blocks, a place where many people get stuck. She addresses being intimidated by others, feeling insecure, requiring validation, and overcoming rejection.

The book is mainly concerned with gallery art. She reminds young artists that they have a lot of leverage in negotiations, and she recommends having a written contract, rather than trusting to a handshake. There's a discussion of discounts, artist statements, market values, pay-to-play, and mailings.

No single book can cover every aspect of the art business. In this volume, there's not much coverage of illustration, concept art, or other studio or commissioned jobs. Also, the coverage of social media is not very thorough. It also doesn't get into much detail about publishing contracts or other legal matters. For that, I'd recommend Tad Crawford's Legal Guide for the Visual Artist.

The back of the book is has a very well-stocked Appendix of Resources, with a list of publications, organizations, websites, and mailing lists.
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How to Survive and Prosper as an Artist: Selling Yourself without Selling Your Soul 358 pages, $24.99 list.
Related Post: 72 Tips for sharing art on social media 
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3 comments:

Salty Pumpkin Art said...

Good review. The book will be on my summer reading list. Thank you

Jim Serrett said...

Funny how many books are out there like this.
Written by"non"artists.
There is an old saying that goes something like, I get my legal advice from lawyers, my medical advice from doctors, so why would I ...you get the idea.
I am certain there is sound business advice in this book. But.
...
I found a book in a second hand store, published by the artist Kenneth Harris titled "How to Make a Living as a Painter". first edition 1954. He had some very interesting insights that are still valuable today. I think that came from him actually doing it. Best book of art business advice I ever received, better than the advice on making a living as an artist I received from getting two art degrees.

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