My husband and I were watching 60 Minutes when they featured a story about mobile phone addiction. It was very compelling (and scary) and they focused mostly on teens. Then my husband dropped the bomb and said "I wonder why they aren't featuring a middle aged woman who spends way too much time on her phone". Gee, I wonder who he was referring to?
I do spend a lot of time on my phone. Recently I have made an effort to spend less time on my iphone. But then I started a new instagram account and blog called @my100yearoldhome and my plan went right out the window.
But here is my question. Is it any "less bad" if the time I spend on my phone is primarily for my business? I check email and social media frequently on my phone. But the social media is about 85% business related. I guess I could spend the same time on my computer and thus it would seem less like I am addicted to my phone.
The scary thing is that I don't even think we know how much time we are spending on our phones. I did some research and I found an app that tracks the time you spend on your phone. The app is called Moment, and it is designed to help you monitor (and hopefully, lessen) the time you spend staring glassy-eyed at your phone. You set the "start" and "end" times for tracking your phone use, as well as your maximum daily limit. The app gives you "nudge" updates every so often so you know how much time you've used. I don't think it shocks you if you go over your limit but I do think just knowing the amount of time spent on your phone might be an eye opening. At least for me.
How much time do you think you spend on your mobile phone? I will install the app and let you know soon ...
Hopefully you have had a chance to think about your audience. (If you haven't read yesterday's blog post I suggest you do that first!)
Now that you have some idea as to who your audience is, it's time to find them. And the first two places you need to start are Facebook and Instagram. Go to your Facebook account and set up an ad. While you are setting up the ad you need to create an audience who will receive your ad. The way you do this is by identifying demographics and interests of your audience. Start with the basics, such as geographic location, age, gender, etc. Then start identifying their interests. Perhaps it's travel, outdoors, sports, and food and wine. The list of interests can go on and on and on. Maybe your audience likes the beach and water sports and travel. As you create your audience be sure to save it and name it appropriately.
You don't even need to run an ad right now. Just define your audience. And just so you know since Facebook bought Instagram the audience you create will work for both Facebook and Instagram.
30" x 30" Available here.
One of the questions I am asked all the time is "How do I find my audience?" Most artists need to know who their audience is, because why should you spend your time marketing if you don't even know who you are marketing to? It's pretty simple. If you know your audience, you can target your art to them. And sell more art.
So how do you find your audience? It's not as hard as you think.
The first step is to look at your existing customers. Who has already bought your art? Take the time to look back at your customers. Take notes to determine their age, their demographics, their interests. Once you have done that, spend some time determining what interests they share in common.
If you haven't sold a lot of art then you need to decide who you want your audience to be. What is it about your art that appeals to an audience? Is it the subject matter? What about the style? Is there a marketing audience (such as interior designers) that can help sell your art to their customers?
Take the day to give this some thought. Write down your answers. And be ready for tomorrow's blog post for what to do next.
"Separated at Berth", Oil, 11" x 14", Available here.
It's the beginning of the second quarter of the year and it's time to stop and ask your self a question. What are you most excited about when it comes to your art? Is it a painting on your easel? Is it a new series you are painting? Perhaps it is a new show you are hoping to enter. The answer is important. But asking the question is the key.
Because what ever you are the most excited about should be what you are telling everyone else about. Write your answer down. Now go look on facebook, instagram, and on your blog. Are you telling everybody else what you are excited about? I am guessing probably not.
For some reason we forget to talk about the most exciting things happening in our art. But not anymore. On the first of every month I want you to ask yourself this question and then focus on sharing this information with your art audience. Do this every month. Got it?
When you share what you are most excited about others will enjoy your enthusiasm. This is a win, win, I promise.
Well, it's official. My blog titled My 100 Year Old Home has officially launched. There are already five posts on the blog and tomorrow there will be a new, somewhat interesting, yet humorous blog post. titled "My Life as a Dish Whore-der". I would love it if you would visit my blog and let me know what you think. It even has recipes (for those of you who didn't get one of my cookbooks!).
So how does this affect this blog titled "My Everyday Life as a Working Artist"? Not at all. Each blog has a different purpose and I am excited to be able to have two blogs. It's a big undertaking but I know I can do it!
So do you have a blog? It's a great way to have a conversation about your art. For me my blog is a way to share my life as an artist, which includes all of the crazy things I try to accomplish every day! Tomorrow starts my week of commissions. I have three 6' x 9' abstract paintings to complete and I will be so happy when these huge canvases are out of my studio. They are so big and I can barely move around in my studio! I also have a huge list of things to get done and I would love to cross a few of those! I won't bore you with what's on my to-do list. But I can say that launching my new blog was at the top of the list!
If you don't have a blog for your art you might want to consider creating one. It's a wonderful tool to promote your art and a lot of fun too!
Some of you probably remember the theme I used for last September's Thirty Paintings in Thirty Days Challenge: Project Runway! I painted thirty paintings that were inspired by dresses created on one of my favorite shows, Project Runway.
Fast forward five months and I get a call from a friend of mine who owns one of the nicest dress shops in our area. It's called Pearls and it's in San Marino. It turns out she had seen my abstract paintings on Facebook and wanted to add it to her store.
Yesterday I spent three hours at the shop as I delivered ten abstract paintings and five oils. I think these pictures best show what an amazing job they did styling my art in the store! (Click on the image for a closer view.)
It's amazing how well the abstracts and oils show together. And I love the colors. Stunning.
Isn't it great when you try something new, like designing paintings based on dresses from Project Runway, and it leads to a wonderful opportunity?
I love my job.
That is, the piece you are dying to find.)You have probably seen photos or hard me talk about my newest obsession with Rae Dunn pottery. Over the next few months I am going to have a drawing for some canisters, a teapot, Pour, mugs and much more. My first giveaway is the TEA canister.
I’ve been hunting for Rae Dunn for some time now and have cultivated quite the collection. And since so many of you said that there’s not a lot of Rae Dunn in your areas, I thought, why not share the love? So here are the details on how to enter this giveaway for the “Tea” canister!
1. Make sure you’re following me on Instagram @my100yearold home.
2. Like this photo on my Instagram feed.
3. Tag two friends in the same comment who would love this @RaeDunnClay piece
4. Comment in the same feed and tell us what your unicorn Rae Dunn piece is.
That’s it. The contest has started and ends on Wednesday at 5:00pm PST. Just head on over to my feed on Instagram @my100yearoldhome to enter. It’s that simple!
There is a part of me that gets a lot of joy from entertaining. I love to cook. But when I invite a few friends over, the meal takes on a whole new meaning. Suddenly I have a goal ... pick a theme, set a beautiful table, cook a fabulous meal and entertain our guests.
It's interesting that entertaining is so much more fun that cooking.
On Friday night we hosted our "local" dinner club. (I call this dinner club "local" because we belong to another dinner club that we have been part of for 25 years. And just in case one of them reads this post I didn't want them to think they missed something ...) Anyway, the dinner was for eight people and since I recently "kind of redecorated" our dining room I was excited to host the dinner in the room formerly known as "the room we never go in to".
(I also feel at this time I should come clean. I didn't "kind of redecorate" our dining room, I completely redecorated our dining room. In my defense, our new table was a Christmas gift from my darling husband. And with my excellent shopping skills, aka "I am a cheapskate", I was able to return our four-month-delayed-table-and-chairs from Pottery Barn and buy them for one half the price at the Pottery Barn Outlet. And yes, they delivered them the next day.)
Enough about that. Our dinner party was a huge hit. Let me explain why.
I am a huge fan of the show "Chopped". The basic premise of the show is where chefs are given a "mystery box" with four ingredients and are required to prepare an item using these ingredients and any others found in the kitchen. As you might have guessed, we played Chopped at our dinner (for the appetizer course). Which was pretty brilliant of me as it was one less course I had to cook! The ingredients in Box A (which was randomly selected by the gals) were fresh salmon, avocado, parmesan cheese and fresh pasta. Box B had raw chicken, goat cheese, dried apricots and fresh pasta. Everyone had a blast and I think they were secretly relieved that I had cooked the rest of the meal for them. And the food? It was fabulous.
It didn't take a lot to plan this and it was really fun. It just set the mood for the entire evening. Lots of laughter. Lots of wine.
I know you are wondering why I am posting about this. I just wanted to remind everyone how much fun it is to entertain. Even if it's family or friends next door, make a call and pick a date. It doesn't have to be formal. How about Tuesday Taco night? Or Sunday Potluck Supper? Just get a group of friends together. You will be happy you did.
You might recall that in December we did an Artists Helping Artists show introducing a "Twelve Month Plan to Organize Your Art Business". The plan was that each month we would tackle one task to help organize your business. In January we did a show with tips on how to organize your “art office” which included creating a color coded filing system and new folders for 2017.
In February we did a show on how to get your photos organized on your computer. I don’t know about you, but this was a huge task for me! It took almost the entire month of February but I am happy to say I can now actually find a photo when needed.
March is the month to organize your computer files. If your computer is a mess, you’re probably already aware of it. And the reason you need to organize your computer files is because it allows you to work a lot smarter and faster. It's pretty simple. And I call it spring cleaning.
Join me, and my co-host Anne Needham as we discuss what you need to do to "Get Your Computer Organized". The show airs live today, Thursday, March 23rd, at 8:00am PST, 11:00 am EST. Of course every show is recorded and archived so you can always listen to it at a later date.
Listen to the show here.
Sometimes when something goes really well you are afraid it won't ever be that good again. But my Art Marketing Bootcamp #3 has been amazing. Boot Camp isn't easy (which is why I don't call it "Art Spa Camp"). But to watch these women go through a very intense "soul searching" few days and then see their expressions when they realize they have a brand and a plan is one of the best experiences I have ever had. I even shed a few tears today when I realized each of these six women were thrilled with their progress and success. They are just wonderful.
If you are interested in any of my upcoming boot camps I do have a few spots available. Just click here for all of the information. It's a pretty amazing experience and I would love to share it with you!
Mom. Wife. Artist. Marketer. Teacher. Radio Show Host.
My Favorite Things
Some of my posts contain affiliate links for your convenience. Click here for full disclosure.