Okay, we are kidding ourselves if we think that there isn’t a business side to art. There is and, as you know, artists need to wear many hats in order to have a growing career. One of those hats is “Marketing and Promoting your Paintings”. There are many ways to do this necessary aspect of your career. Some methods require big funds to accomplish and some methods are free. I will be writing a series of articles on some of the free ways that you can promote your paintings and gain recognition.
One marketing hat you should wear is the “Press Release Writer” …Now, this is where the artist pales at the mere suggestion of writing an article. Relax, press releases are one of the easiest articles to write and can make a huge difference in any event, workshop, or announcement. Here are the basics.
- Start your article with these basic facts: Who, What, Where, Why and When.
Example #1: The oil paintings (WHAT) of Skokie artist, Elizabeth Jones (WHO), will be featured in “Light and Wonder Show ” (WHY) for the month of October (WHEN) at the White Rose Gallery (WHERE), Skokie, Illinois.
- Elaborate upon the facts:
Example #2: Thirty floral paintings, emphasizing the inspiration of luminosity, will be on display.
- Elaborate on the techniques or style of the paintings:
Example #3: Thick juicy strokes accent the brilliant glow of these impressionist paintings.
- Bio on artist:
Example #4: Elizabeth Jones, known for her romantic expression of flowers, studied oil painting and design with nationally recognized artist, Howard James. She has been an associate member of Oil Painters of America for 5 years and has been juried into 3 of the OPA regional shows.
Example #5: The Opening Reception will be October 1st from 5 pm to 9 pm. Artist, Elizabeth Jones, will be present to discuss her techniques. The public is welcome.
- Contact info:
Example #6: White Rose Gallery is located 931 Niles Center Road, Skokie, Illinois. For more information contact Cheryl at 316-673-4196.
For this example, that would be the end of the article. It is 143 words long. It is a short Press Release, easy for the newspaper or magazine to fit into their layouts. But you are not done yet.
- At the top of the article, you need to write:
For Immediate Release
- At the end of the article, in order for the newspaper to be able to contact you and verify that this press release has originated in their area, you need to write:
For more information contact:
Elizabeth Jones (your name)
5140 Howard Street ( your address)
Skokie, Illinois 59715
312- 222-5555 ( your phone number)
- Be sure to include a photo of one of your paintings that will be on display. Include the title, size and medium of that painting. Most newspapers are wanting digital 250 dpi images that are about 5 inches x 7 inches.
Here is the finished Press Release example: ( all names and information are fictional )
Write the press release based on facts, do not let it sound like an advertisement. Always write in the third person. Be aware that some newspapers are more prone to print press releases than others. In my home town, the arts have a separate insert magazine once a week that features what is happening in the arts, music, and dance. This is where art related press releases would be sent.
Submit your press release to neighboring newspapers, local magazines and, yes, national magazines. Many publications are now accepting press releases via e-mail, easy to use and to attach your photo. Call the publication first to find out the way that they prefer to receive press releases.
Each time you win an award or are juried into a regional or national show, you need to write a press release. Not only are you getting the word out to the public about your achievements, but in the process, you are introducing the editors of these publications to your work and your career. In time, this could definitely develop into an article. Press releases will awaken the general public to your work and your career. The more they know about you, the more likely they are to step up and purchase your paintings, take classes, etc.
So these are the basics. Most newspapers welcome an independent writer to aid their reporters’ efforts to keep their publication interesting. Try it! You have nothing to loose and “career recognition” to gain!