Episode 179 – New Markets for Artists / Abbey Ryan

Abbey Ryan

Abbey Ryan is discussed in detail in chapter 6, but she began the same way Sandy Tracey did, and after less than three years of posting her small paintings on eBay every day, she was earning over $200,000 from her work. Like Tracey, she began with low prices, and the prices slowly grew until she was selling a small painting for about $800 every day. There are more and more artists selling this way from all over the world, and eBay is a market that builds real value, because as demand grows, the prices will naturally be bid higher.

While Abbey Ryan is a big success, it is important to see that it isn’t all or nothing. Sandy Tracey is also selling her work and isn’t looking for a full-time income—just a way to earn a little extra income. www.abbeyryan.com

Kim Jacobi

Here is the story of Kim Jacobi, an artist who used Craigslist and Facebook to jumpstart her career. In her own  words:

I am a textile and batik artist living in Southern California. Although I created a batik over twenty years ago as an assignment in an interior design class, I started rather late as an “artist” (I was over fifty when I again picked up fabric, wax and dyes). Convinced by family and friends that I should try to market and sell my art, I felt I had no time to waste. I started looking at Craigslist ads under Community and Artists at least twice a day and answered every “call for art” I saw. I’ve shown at over thirty one-night  art  shows,  have  been  involved  in three monthly art walks and two community art fairs, and am now hanging in one art gallery and one clothing store, both on Abbot Kinney Boulevard in Venice, CA, which has turned into a world-renowned shopping mecca. All of this has happened in under a year. I am now coordinating a series of modern batik art workshops with master batik artist/ instructor, David Kibuuka, here in L.A. I reached him by just sending him an email telling him how much I admired his work and explaining what I do, how I started, and how I evolved, and including a link to my website. I told him I’d appreciate any comments. Well, he wrote me the very next day saying he loved my work and wanted to learn my process, and that we should collaborate on some project and he would come here to do it. I was having a hard time finding a suitable location at a reasonable price until I posted a “shout out” on a Facebook page called SoCal Art Shows & Events. I found the perfect spot. The workshops are set to go forward in October and I have already had sixteen people respond to flyers I had printed as well as another post on the same Facebook page. So I’m a big advocate of Internet networking. It’s been working for me.

For Kim Jacobi, Craigslist and Facebook brought the majority of her opportunities, along with old-fashioned ambition and dedication to her goals. She started like everyone else, not knowing what Facebook is even about, and before long it was a comfortable tool in her hands. http://badassbatik.com/

To learn more about Brainard Carey and his services for artists, or to take a class from him, click here.  To join one of his free weekly webinars, click here. To download the workbook mentioned in this series, click here.


Episode 178 – New Markets for Artists / Lindsey O’Leary

Lindsey O’Leary

Lindsey O’Leary was working in a museum to help market exhibits. She said that in October of 2010 she tweeted a couple of times at Robin Cembalest, editor of ARTnews, and it resulted in a review of the Mattress Factory’s “Queloides: Race and Racism in Contemporary Cuban Art” exhibition in 2010. She went on to say, “From that moment forward, I believed in the democratic nature of social media.” That is a small amount of effort to put in to gain a major review, and it points to the ease of personal tweets to gain press attention worth thousands of dollars. www.mattress.org

Jill Slaymaker

Jill Slaymaker is a fifty-six-year-old artist who started using Facebook in 2010. She uses it to build her résumé and get exhibits. She said Rolando Ramos contacted her on Facebook saying he was curating The Chakra Show at the Mary Benson Gallery in Jersey City, which she was eventually included in. Also, while looking through Facebook and seeking opportunities for exhibits she saw an open call for the Tate Modern in London. She submitted work and was accepted into a  group  show  there curated by Ceci Moss. For her, Facebook is also a way of meeting new and interesting people. There was a museum in Barcelona that invited her for a solo show, and that turned out to be a glass phone booth, which was a conceptual project by another artist, but it was real and a lot of fun to be part of, for her. She continues to exhibit and build her career by looking for opportunities, but also by chance happenings that come from getting out there and meeting people. www.jillslaymaker.com

Terri Loyd

Terri Loyd, artist, fifty years old, uses Facebook to build a community of artists that share similar interests for mutual gain. She created an organization called The Haggus Society. After meeting in person with Deborah Forbes, an artist and friend from Facebook, Loyd convinced her to become a member of the Haggus Society. In the Spring of 2010 Loyd launched the society as a nonprofit and began gathering more members. Within a year she has thirty-eight local members and eighty-eight worldwide. As a group, they share work, create exhibits, and increase visibility for women artists over forty years old. As the site says, “The Haggus Society strives to redefine the conventional terminology of emerging, mid-career, and late-career artists as classifications and barriers to accessing support.”Her use of Facebook has enabled her to meet new members, through Facebook and grow her organization, and also simply to meet more artists who feel the same way she does. www.thehaggussociety.org

Sandy Tracey

Sandy Tracey is fifty-eight years old, has a background in graphic design, and started a blog where she posts a painting every day. She spends about ninety minutes every morning painting a small work, about five by seven inches. Then she photographs it with her small consumer camera, and posts it on her blog. The blog also automatically posts it to her Facebook page. At first she asked for $50 for each painting, but they weren’t selling, so she dropped the price to $30, and people bought them. Sandy said she did whatever the blog instructions said to do to promote your blog, like using Twitter and commenting on other peoples’ posts. She also started to write more and to tell people she was saving up for a trip to Greece, and that seemed to increase sales for her. Now she sells a painting at least once a week and has a growing base of fans. www.sandytracey.com

To learn more about Brainard Carey and his services for artists, or to take a class from him, click here.  To join one of his free weekly webinars, click here. To download the workbook mentioned in this series, click here.


Episode 177 – New Markets for Artists / Prospering in the New Marketplace

Chapter 1

Prospering in the New Marketplace

Before this book entered production, the editor asked me to include more stories in the first chapter showing how specific artists used a social networking tool like Facebook to their advantage. A few short examples of what artists have done for their careers through Facebook are outlined here so you can see how it might work for you. To research these stories, I posted a paragraph on my Facebook and Google Plus accounts asking if artist friends had stories to tell about social media tools and connections helping their art career. I got many responses from friends. Here are a few I think worth sharing.

The Jerry Saltz Page Phenomenon

On Facebook, there is a well-known New York art critic, Jerry Saltz, who has a page that anyone can read. It is a place where hundreds of artists debate and meet each other. The friend limit has already been reached on that page, but Saltz is also on Twitter and other media, and he frequently deletes massive amounts of friends to make room for new ones!

P. Elaine Sharpe

P. Elaine Sharpe is an artist from Toronto, Canada, who frequents the page and often makes comments that are interesting enough to generate more debate and sometimes responses from the critic himself. Occasionally, comments turn into offline exchanges that can become very real. In 2011, Savannah Spirit, a curator who met Sharpe through Jerry Saltz’s Facebook page, put some of Sharpe’s work in a show called Hotter Than July, in NYC. That show got press, and was listed as a “Critics Pick” in New York Magazine as a show to see. The critic, of course, was Jerry Saltz. His use of Facebook is better than most, because as a writer he creates wonderful short phrases, often misspelled, seemingly in a rush, that are engaging, charming, vulgar, and thoughtful, and that generate tons of responses. He is truly communicating with his audience, as opposed to just making announcements about his latest interests.

To learn more about Brainard Carey and his services for artists, or to take a class from him, click here.  To join one of his free weekly webinars, click here. To download the workbook mentioned in this series, click here.


Episode 176 – New Markets for Artists / Organizing


The problem for many is how to manage all that information. Which news source do you read, which blog do you read, and where do you see art? Where do you read reviews about art? Rather than get overwhelmed or remove yourself from civilization—which now means being connected to the Internet—we must all organize ourselves so we can manage our careers efficiently without getting too busy or spending valuable studio time in front of the computer. If you followed all the tools and techniques in this book, and carried them all out with a passion, you could limit yourself to as little as thirty minutes a day online. If you wanted to do more, you could spend up to two hours online developing your career. Either way, I am not asking you to spend more time on the computer; I am trying to get you to spend less time in front of a screen by making the time you are there as efficient as possible.

Full-Time  Income

In chapter 6 I tell the story of an artist who sells all her work on eBay. She makes a full-time living at it with a six-figure income. She spends about two to three hours a day on eBay, blogging, and posting her latest work. As of this writing, she has become so successful after about three years of hard work that her art is now sold by other sources, like a gallery that saw her selling art online and made her a deal of some kind. You see, it is not just about you sharing and selling directly, it is about you becoming known as a successful artist, or as an artist with great work; then other people will make you offers that you may not have expected. There are stories of many bloggers getting a book deal based on the writing they are doing daily. In fact, the way I started publishing was not by submitting a book proposal to a publisher. It was the publisher that called me, because he saw my newsletter, or a friend of his saw my newsletter and suggested he contact me. That happened within less than a year of starting a newsletter, and it led to four book contracts.


Things tend to snowball once there is momentum. In 2011, I was writing books like this one and two others as well. I also created an Internet project on kickstarter.com and I raised  thousands  for an art project I was doing. But that online art project led to many more things. I was invited to have a show with my wife in New York, and I was invited to a biennial in Europe (all expenses paid)—and more opportunities kept coming! I have been at it for many years as an artist, but the reason that 2011 was such a big year for me was also because I was firing on all cylinders, I was organized, and I was using all of the social media tools available, from managing my mailing lists, to Facebook, Twitter, and blogs. In this book I will tell you how to efficiently utilize all those tools and customize them for yourself to fit your pace, your goals, and to make your life easier and more productive with the least effort. I welcome your comments and suggestions because they are the basis of much of the information in here. I write a newsletter— which I encourage you to subscribe to—and in it I update all the information that I talk about in this book. In fact, in chapter 2, I base my writing on an answer to a letter from an artist. My website is yourartmentor.com.

To learn more about Brainard Carey and his services for artists, or to take a class from him, click here.  To join one of his free weekly webinars, click here. To download the workbook mentioned in this series, click here.


Episode 175 – New Markets for Artists / Cutting Edge

Cutting Edge

In the hyper-competitive world we are in, the latest software and hardware, as it applies to creativity and promotion, is part of a language in which you must be conversant. This book is like a language course, in that it is meant to enhance your ability to communicate your art and creative ideas to the world. It is also a map, a strategic guide, to help you plant your ideas in the right soil so they will grow. That soil is the physical world as well as the virtual one.


This is my second book on professional development for artists, and it can be used as a companion volume to the first one, Making It in the Art World. What is different about this book is that in it I focus primarily on the Internet as the main “new market” for artists. It is a territory that continues to grow rapidly, and has already provided artists with a full-time living. In chapter 6, I will talk about a graffiti artist who had a background in graphic design, working for an ad agency, and then quit his job to sell his art, first on the street and then on the Internet. When I interviewed him he said his thinking was that it didn’t make sense for him to look for a gallery, even in his hometown of New York City, because there were a billion potential customers out there on the Internet. That is the realm of new markets—how can you argue with his thinking? He is right. That does not mean that galleries no longer have their place. In fact, TMNK, the artist who sold his work on the street, also had several sold-out gallery shows  in Europe, and those galleries found him through work he displayed on the Internet and on the  street.

Sharing Efficiently, The Good News

What this means for artists is that there are more opportunities than ever, and there are more ways to raise money and put together shows through the new world of social networks, which continue to grow, enabling us to share more and more information. As an artist, that is what you are doing: you are sharing information, sharing your images and ideas. And that is what a participant, an artist in the new world market, has to become an expert in: the means to share efficiently.

To learn more about Brainard Carey and his services for artists, or to take a class from him, click here.  To join one of his free weekly webinars, click here. To download the workbook mentioned in this series, click here.


Episode 174 – New Markets for Artists / Is This Book for You?

Is This Book for You?

If you are a serious artist in midcareer, or just thinking about taking a first professional step in the arts, this book will help you identify which market in the art world might suit you best. It will also explain how to reach it, with a focus on social media strategies.

Traditional and Nontraditional Markets

This book will discuss traditional markets and exhibition opportunities such as art fairs, art consultants, galleries, and museums, but the emphasis is on the Internet and using new social media tools to network and get exposure for your art. For the reader who already uses Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or Google Plus: this book will help you to turn that knowledge into a directed, easy-to-manage, and savvy campaign. And for the reader who is reluctant to use Facebook and Twitter, this book can serve as a beginning course to help you familiarize yourself with these platforms and come to enjoy them at your own pace.

Where You Fit In

If you are a painter, sculptor, or conceptual artist, you will benefit from this book’s lessons on how to use the Internet to advance your career. You will hear stories of artists who have had success in selling their work on their own terms, without compromising in any way. You can choose which story or combination thereof fits you. If something clicks and one of these stories shows you a career path you’d like to emulate, then the remainder of the book will fill you in on the details. In the following chapters, the method you choose will be broken down into steps which you will use specific tools to complete. There is much devoted to Internet strategies, for the beginner as well as for the advanced user. I will also discuss other non-digital methods, such as new satellite art fairs around big ones, and making your own pop-up shows  to selling on the street. The Internet is truly the new territory, through which you can access billions of viewers. Even in the midst of economic crisis, there is a growing online market for art. It is a new territory because the Internet is vast and growing with more viewers all the time. In Asia alone there is over 900 million online, and in Europe, there is 500 million and in North America, almost 300 million as of 2012.

Artists living in the new millennium must create new models for exhibitions and sales. They must also be aware of new modes for reaching an audience, including social networking, the latest online platforms, and mobile phone apps. How we share visual information is radically shifting, and artists can use all these new tools.

To learn more about Brainard Carey and his services for artists, or to take a class from him, click here.  To join one of his free weekly webinars, click here. To download the workbook mentioned in this series, click here.


Episode 173 – New Markets for Artists

New Markets for Artists

The reason I wrote this book was in answer to the many artists who receive my newsletter, The Art World Demystified. It is also for all those who continue to seek my services as a coach to help with building a strategy for their  career.

It has been incredibly rewarding for myself as a professional artist and coach to work with individuals whose career took a turn for the better after focused commitment. I want to thank all of you who have been a part of the newsletter and all of those who may be part of it in the future. Much of the information on the web site, http://yourartmentor.com, was designed for artists and is regularly updated with feedback I remain grateful for.

My wife Delia Carey, is half of everything I do with The Art World Demystified, and though I am the “talker” so to speak, we run this educational resource together, and without her, it would not exist. I remain grateful for her beyond measure but in the case of this book, she has also been an excellent editor and source of encouragement and love. 🙂

My father, Marvin Salzberg has been a great support and continues to be as my late mother, Joan Egeland-Scott was.

When I interview artists I often ask about their parents, and it is usually no coincidence that one of the hardest professions on the planet had some real love and support behind it in the form of parents. Of course that is not always the case, but in mine it was. I miss my mother tremendously and wish she could have seen my first book published, but I know that her voice is in the words I write throughout this book.

My son, Shiva Carey has also been a great supporter of my work, and while that might seem natural, he has the insights of a writer at a young age and it has served me well. Also his ability to teach me about games like Portal, Mortal Combat and Assasins Creed, has allowed me to understand the immense power and artistry of the video gaming industry, largely built by visionary artists. Without him, I would be at a loss to understand it all, and of course without him, I would not be having nearly as much fun playing all the games I do.

Skyhorse Publishing has been a pleasure to work with, and in an age of electronic books, they are a publisher who still makes beautiful books, with special attention to cover art, paper stock and the general beauty of the printed book. How can I not love them?

Richard Bolger, longtime friend and excellent photographer, created the cover photograph for this book and the last one, and without him, I believe this book would not be nearly as sexy as it it. Thank you Rich.

To learn more about Brainard Carey and his services for artists, or to take a class from him, click here.  To join one of his free weekly webinars, click here. To download the workbook mentioned in this series, click here.