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As artists, promoting yourself can be scary. There is sometimes. A feeling of bragging. But hey! You are not bragging. You are giving and sharing your gifts with the world. You’re sharing ideas, art pieces, stories that can change a person’s life. In this episode of the guide we spoke with Nick Gammon, Political Odyssey, and Melissa Gold about promoting. You will read about their ways to promote them self or how they sometimes struggle.
‘Perhaps I should begin by saying I am probably the worst person in the world to give advice on how to promote yourself in social media, so I won’t do that.’ Says Nick Gammon
Nick thinks one simple thing really matters. Focus. Focus firstly on your work, and then focus on what you want to do with it. So, if for example you’d like a one person show with Larry Gagosian, that’s great! But realize that’s a big leap. So, you have to focus on how that could happen. What steps would have to take, which hoops would you have to jump through to get that big exhibition, or something like it? And so the trick is to focus on what you can reasonably achieve.
‘One of the best ways have found to do this is to work with the artists and galleries that are in your circle, who are your contemporaries.’ Says Nick Gammon
Melissa agrees on the statement of Nick. I have found Instagram a great way to connect to other artists. Finding other artists that support each other makes me feel part of something bigger.
Work together, collaborate with the people you know, make exhibitions and new galleries with them. But also, and this not a contradiction, remember to keep focus on the thing within your work that is independent and separate.
Justin A Curmi is in research and interpreting data for political organizations, which means he would often look backwards to look forward. So, when he started to play with art after struggling with getting a solid job in politics — mostly nonprofit work that often didn’t pay, but wanted quality research and briefs (“job experience”).
‘I looked backwards to go forward, and yes, I have noticed my decision lead me to one non-paying field to another. Nonetheless, I get to work on my vision and ideas rather than another’s vision and ideas. So, I gathered an intermediate level understanding about: the art markets through history, the responses to them, and the art pieces that were sold.’ Says Justin
He learned two courses of action:
1. A short-term approach is one that does everything that appeases the sentiments of the given time, which may be more profitable and beneficial.
2. A long-term approach is one that tries to go against the current sentiments of the given time, which may or may not pay off. Mostly depends on the intellect of the Artist.
Last, always go to where the people are gathering and communicating. Then learn the language of the gathering spot.
For Melissa is art a form of therapy. ‘I believe the only way to truly leave a mark is to be your true self.’ There are so many talented artists, how can I stand apart? Only by being my honest naked self.
She finds herself not the greatest artist, but, there is no one like me.
‘I don’t create because I believe it will make me lots of money or become famous, I do it because it is the only thing I have ever done that made me feel complete.’ Says Melissa
If others can see, appreciate that, what a blessing! ‘I think we can all agree that in this age of technology, utilizing online sources is a great way to get yourself seen by eyes that might never otherwise get to see your work. That being said, I still find that good old fashioned word of mouth works well too!’ Says Melissa
She was able to donate a piece to a charity gala event which she was honored to be part of. Not only was she able to donate to a great cause, but in the process she was able to have her art seen by possible bidders.
She finds herself an outsider artist. ‘I have to take every opportunity offered if I want my art to be seen. You have to put yourself out there and not be afraid of what anyone thinks. Some will love me some don’t get me at all, and that’s okay. That’s art.’