Platform Building for Artists

Happy Halloween!

Since today is the 31st (an odd date), it is an ‘art’ day.

Today is also the last day of the WD 2015 October Platform Challenge. I can’t believe how quickly the month has flown by. When I started, I didn’t think I had any reason to start a platform because I am not yet published. I have since learned, thanks to this challenge, that I still need to start my platform, especially since I am also trying to build an art business–which leads me to today’s topic.

Based on a quick search on Google, artists also need a platform. According to a 2013 article on Examiner.com, Tumblr is the best blogging platform for artists. I do not have any personal experience with Tumblr. I tried to investigate, but you can’t even look around without signing up for an account.

Here are a few other sites/articles that might be useful if you’re interested in building an artists platform:

https://www.lightspacetime.com/
20 Free Art Portfolio Websites to Market Your Art

http://www.finearttips.com/
7 Ways to Grow Your Artistic Career with Social Media

The following is specific to Minted stores, but still provides good overview of how the different platforms might be useful if your goal is to sell your art: http://www.minted.com/julep/2015/10/08/socialplatform/

If you’re an artist, do you have a platform? Please share your experience or insights by entering a comment below.

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Arts in the Classroom

My earliest ‘art’ memory is from kindergarten. We used a piece of screen, a maple leaf, and yellow paint to ‘print’ a leaf pattern onto a trivet. I was fascinated and the memory stuck with me.  I continued with the usual drawing that kids do throughout elementary school with crayons and such.

In 7th or 8th grade, our church youth director offered drawing classes once a week and I went to those while they were available. And, like many other aspiring artists of the time, I watched Bob Ross whenever I could. The man was amazing and I wanted to paint just like him.

My first experience with a ‘real’ art class didn’t come until 9th grade, where I decided that I wanted to have my own stationery company. I had always been obsessed with greeting cards, note cards, calendars, you name it. If it was a paper product designed to be written on, I wanted it.

I graduated high school in 1979 (no, that’s not a typo; I’m that old) and went to the University of Southern Mississippi as a Graphics Communications major. Unfortunately, I decided that it would be much more fun to major in partying and left school in February 1980. Life went on. I got married in 1981. Got divorced in 1982. Went into the Navy in 1983, where I met a wonderful man who I married after four months of dating and today I still call “Hubby”.

I continued to dabble in art here and there. Spending hundreds of dollars on supplies over the years, but rarely actually using them–not to mention the books! I could start a library of how-to art books alone.

In July 2014, I finally decided to seriously explore my artistic side and signed up for acrylic painting classes at a local Michael’s store. Some of my work is pretty good (if I do say so myself). I’ve even put some of my work on products for sale via Zazzle and CafePress.

You’re probably wondering what the point is to my ramblings. Here it is: If not for that 9th grade art class, I don’t know that I would have found my interest in art on my own–at least not in the same way. It’s true that it has taken years to get back to it, but the dream is still alive. It just needed to be dusted off.

I’ve often thought “If only I had stuck with it when I graduated high school…” But at least I was able to experience it for one year in high school. Most kids today don’t have that opportunity because current budgets don’t support ‘arts’ as part of the regular curriculum.

If you believe that our kids need this vital aspect of development in the classroom, check out Arts Action Fund.

Did art have an impact on your education? Leave a reply to let us know!