The one thing I know about creatives is that all we really want to do is create. Whether it is painting, illustrating, making earrings, knitting, sculpture, ceramics… we know the joy that comes from creating, and if we had our way we would just do that all the time.
But when it comes to running a creative business part of what we have to do is sell our work. And that involves marketing ourselves, talking about ourselves and our work, and putting ourselves out there on social media. Which can be really scary, overwhelming and intimidating!
I recently put a piece of work up on my Instagram account and asked for feedback, and it was a little controversial! I had been playing around with different ideas, and because so often I am working by myself sometimes it’s nice to put new work out in the world and see what people think. But there were some strong opinions, some people really love it, some people really don’t, which is always interesting.
The controversial piece I put on my Instagram. Some loved it, some really didn’t!
When I studied architecture many moons ago we had these crazy critique sessions where you had put in all this hard work producing these projects and the tutors and other students would essentially rip it to shreds. It could be really intense! And I think it has given me a little bit of a thick skin.
It is really important to remember that if you don’t back yourself and your work, no one else will, so if you love what you are doing, share it with the world. Not everyone will like it but thats ok. One of my favourite paintings I have created is still sitting in my studio because no one has loved it enough to buy it.
This world needs more beauty in it so sharing what you create can only be a good thing.
And remember to create for yourself not just for others, or what you think other people would like.
My absolute favourite piece so far “peace of mind” still available on my website.
Always remember it is ok to take a break from social media. I took 6 weeks off last summer and this month took another few weeks off. It is an essential part of my marketing but it can also be so consuming. It is important to always remember it is a highlight reel and that comparison is the thief of joy. So sometimes seeing what other creatives are up to is really inspiring, and sometimes it can be really intimidating.
I will be talking more about social media, marketing your work and the rollercoaster of running a creative business in my upcoming course “The Business of Art”.
I will be sending out information for this course soon so make sure to register your interest below.