Why does the Internet work for artists? Well, it’s free, it’s huge, it’s full of magical and wonderful people, tools and sites. Most importantly, it maximizes your exposure to your patrons and groupies. It’s what we want as artists, no? Don’t lie. Even those of us, like myself, who are painfully sensitive to criticism and rather crawl into a hole and zip it closed, still want praise and recognition. It’s what makes us human, however pathetic it seems.
So, here’s what you do to make your patrons start a bidding war over your art and your groupies start a bidding war over your body…uh, body of work, I mean.
1. Get a website. Better yet, get a blog, a WordPress blog. You know how to blog don’t you, just put your lips together and… Wait, that’s something else. Anyway, before I tell you how, read our article on “what is a blog”, then come back real quick to continue this fascinating article. In summary, a blog is a regularly updated journal or chronicle of articles and other bits of information such as images and links, published as web pages. A blog is best for an artist is because we don’t want to get bogged down in technology, we want a quick and easy way to display our amazing talents and join a community of folks who think we are just as amazing as they are. Where there is community, there is opportunity, folks. Becoming a successful artist is all about networking and knowing as many people as possible to spread the word about how disgustingly talented you are and how great your piece would be in someone’s home, on someone’s body or wherever you’d like to have it put. There are a number of truly amazing online blogging communities for all types of topics, subjects and groups. To find them, you can do a web search for ‘blog networks’. Of course, local art groups and associations online sometimes have their own blogs. And if they don’t, they damn well should! Visit our resources page for useful links to get your *arse* blogging.
But, before you sign up with a community, you got to a have a blog first don’t you otherwise it’s the whole putting the cart before the horse problem. You have three choices, get a free one that’s hosted for you, get a free one you host yourself, or get a fee based one that you host yourself or is hosted for you. Here are the differences:
A free hosted blog from WordPress.com, Blogger.com or LiveJournal.com. You get a free blog with limited (but usually generous) web space, a domain name with the host’s extension (yourname.wordpress.com, yourname.blogspot.com, community.livejournal/yourname.com), an instant network, and bragging rights. I’d suggest WordPress.com cause WordPress because they’ve got a great community, great tools, and great looking templates. I like blogger.com too. Live Journal, not so much. The themes are quite visually offensive.
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