June 8, 2017

Networking Matters, Even for Artists

Talent and Vision are important to the success of any Artist, but as with many other industries, don't forget the value of Who You Know (and Who Knows You). Its pretty common to hear that most artists are introverts and prefer not to hob knob with each other or potential buyers. Whether or not that is true, I think we can all agree that you need to connect with people to share your art with the world. The Internet has made it easier to get your art in front of your audience, but if no one knows you, no one will share and you are the only one who gets to enjoy each piece. Networking and building relationships can help further any artist's career, and here's how to make the most of it. The goal is to seek as much positive influence as possible so you foster your creative spirit and success.

Its easy to get started. All you have to do is meet people. The secret to my success is showing up. Talk to shoppers and fellow vendors at art events. Sit in on local arts organization meetings. You can even join social media groups for virtual networking or send emails to connect with people you admire. Conversation is the key. Say hi, ask questions, share your story, and those who are engaged will respond. Just be sure you're thinking quality instead of quantity and not trying to make a sale. You're trying to make a friend, and the potential for benefiting one another will come to light in time.


  • Meet other creative people you can connect with those who understand what you're going through, and if you're lucky, they may have tips to help you over come.
  • Learn more your market through similar artists and potentially engage a mentor.
  • Get your name out there as an active, dedicated artist and start to build a reputation.
  • Find opportunities to collaborate with artists in similar or different areas of expertise.
  • Artists are often each other's best supporters, recommending one another for opportunities.
  • Obtain knowledgeable critiques from experienced professionals to improve your prospects.  


  • Don't let yourself see other artists as competition or rivals to be beaten.
  • We are all unique, so be careful not to judge or compare your work against that of others.
  • Don't be one-sided in your approach; connect with other artists to help each other. 
  • Avoid letting the work of others influence yours in directions that aren't natural.
    • Don't copy because someone else is finding success with certain elements.
    • Don't follow feedback blindly without questioning what's applicable.
  • There will always be Negative Nancy's out there, so watch out of connections that bring you down. It's not productive for either of you.
  • Best to stay away for big egos that overpower the relationship without value.

"Meeting people who can be of help to one's career - call in "making connections" or "networking" - is vital to artists, although this may be a difficult course to plot: Those who obviously are looking to make headway with the "right people" are apt to be seen as opportunists. Share ideas and information, attempting to interest others in one's work and showing enthusiasm for theirs, on the other hand, are essential to advancement, as the art world picks winners and losers primarily on the basis of what people say." The Business of Being an Artist by Daniel Grant