• Kat

5 easy steps: How to start selling your work

Hello, thanks for being here!

I just joined an art group on Facebook and so many people have questions about selling art and how to get started, so I thought I would try and answer some of them. Here are five steps to start selling your art from scratch.

1 Planning stage

I didn't do this but I wish I had...firstly think about what you want to sell. Do you like making large oil paintings? Charcoal drawings on paper? Think about what your product line will be. You could make prints, originals, greetings cards, stickers, digital art, printed homewares. Pick one or two things to start with. Take the time now to plan the format you will sell things in. Do you want to ship these yourself or pay a company to do that side of it for you? If shipping yourself, consider how you will send art out to people. You can learn more about making prints in my blog here

2 Start making some art!

Ok, ok very obvious... however if you are looking to sell your work it helps to start off with a small collection, ideally all under one theme. Maybe you paint portraits one day, animals the next and that is fine for a hobby, but for a business it helps to choose one niche so that you can become easily recognisable and memorable. Pick a theme that you enjoy (I picked plants and flowers as I love gardening), and create 5 - 10 pieces of art around that. Before you start think about the style you want to use and materials, black and white pencil drawings, pastel watercolours, whatever you enjoy most. You can expand and change this once people get to know you but for now, keep it simple and cohesive. Where possible, photograph and film as much of the process of creating these as possible. That is your social media content.

3 Get social

So you have your art ready and now comes the scary bit. Sharing it on social media. ARGH! This feels terrifying at first. What if nobody likes it? If it feels too frightening to do this straight away, join some art groups on Facebook and share to those small communities first, or open a new social media account away from your friendship group. Remember that no matter what your art is like, the internet is a very big place. Someone, somewhere will think that your art is exactly what they want. You just have to find those people. And they might not be your friends and family. Your creativity is something to be celebrated and it can take a while to find an audience, but you WILL find one. So keep sharing the work, talking about what you are doing and see where it takes you. It gets easier with practise - I promise!!

4 Build some interest

Once on social media, get social! Find other artists that are doing similar things. Instagram is brilliant for this. Follow local artists in your area and look at what they are doing. When I was starting out, I had been told my whole life that you can't make money from art and actually seeing other artists not only making sales but making an actual living from selling their art really helped me believe it was possible. Share other artists on your stories (always tag them!) or write nice comments if you like what they are doing. You will soon start growing a community of your own. Remember there is enough for everyone so lift others up as much as you can. This creates good will, but also people start sharing you back and that really helps you to reach potential customers. See what feedback you are getting from people. Does one piece get more likes than another? What are the trends you are seeing in peoples decor or fashion? Is there a specific community that might like your work, eg if you make dog portraits could you start following and interacting with local groomers, pet shops, groups that chat about certain breeds? If one piece of art gets a lot of likes or comments then you know that is the one to make prints of.

5 Open a shop

So you have some art, you have some people following it. Now you need to herd them into your shop and launch it! For pricing, look at what others in your niche are charging and start around the same price. I will do a whole blog on pricing at some point! If you do prints, start with small batches of 5-10 and see how they go. As a starting point, Etsy is a good option. It is very low cost to set up as you pay a small listing fee and then don't pay any more fees until something sells. These can vary but listing fees are about 16p for one item for 3 months. Sale fees end up being 25-30%. Another option is Shopify or a drag and drop website like Wix or Squarespace, however you will expect to pay around £29 a month for your own site. Unless you are coming in to this with a chunk of money to invest, Etsy is a better option. You can test the waters with limited outlay and people already know, like and trust Etsy as a platform. Sometimes an unknown website from a not well known artist gives people reason to hesitate when it comes to handing over their bank details. You want people to feel confident you are a trusted and honest seller. You can read some tips on getting Etsy set up here

There is a lot more to all this but I am aiming to write regular blogs answering some of these questions, so stay tuned for more info. Please make sure you subscribe to my mailing list so you can keep up to date with when blogs come out as well as getting the chance to win a print every month.

You can always DM me through my website, IG or Facebook...I am happy to help.

Congratulations on taking this step. If I can do it so can you! Believe it :D

All the love,

Kat Xx