Guerilla Marketing for Artists
By Barney Davey
178 pages; paper, $22.46 http://amzn.to/1ce5c9y
Barney Davey’s latest book, Guerrilla Marketing for Artists, is without reservation a worthwhile investment, one with immediate and lasting value. In my view this is more than a book; it is a personal companion that all visual artists should keep next to their camera, computer, easel, or stone carving tools. As a fine art photography teacher at the Orange County Center for Photography and Digital Arts, (http://bit.ly/19vrd4c) this book is now on the required reading list for our classes.
Davey presents an unflinching, no-nonsense approach to selling art for any visual artist, and each page builds upon the last as he begins with you, the artist, and presents a road map of on ramps to help any artist set realistic goals and workable plans to achieve them.
This is not a fragmentary presentation of how to sell art, but an organized approach filled with workable steps to achieving art sales success. What I find compelling is Barney’s real life approach to the arts. He makes it clear in the early chapters that Success, like creativity in art, is unique to the artist. His real world direction for goals and self-evaluation anchors the artist to a starting point and then moves with career choices that will help the artist achieve his/her goals. Some readers may initially find a personal identity crisis as they examine their work, current goals and resources, but this is not a book of flash fiction, it is a systematic plan, one that anyone with the desire to sell their work can achieve.
Davey’s chapters progress from “who am I as an artist” and “where is my career going” to a finish with a box of tools that will insure that you will sell your art if you use the tools correctly. Each chapter breaks an activity into component morsels of action and wisdom. For example, Chapter 7, Networking, defines networking then leads the artist through Warm Networking, and some out of the box thinking such as “Just Say No to Business Cards.” The chapter continues with Smart Networking, Elevator Pitch 101, Referrals, and other topics that build a creative understanding of the how’s and why of art networking and networks.
Chapter 9 addresses marketing online and is probably worth the price of the book in and of itself. Art sales in my view are in the throes of major distribution channel change and on-line marketing may become the leading venue for artwork. All of the major galleries have added on-line sales access, and of course, there are many standalone on-line galleries. Davey addresses on-line sales issues with a process approach that puts internet marketing in perspective. I gained valuable insight in this area and I think most serious artists should read this chapter several times and visit the sites that he uses as referrals.
Finally, Davey provides ample resources at the end of the book. Here you will find additional books, many of his own, web sites, and a plethora of art blogs, which focus on art sales. Each of these follow his principles of straight talk, inspiration and hands on guidance.
I recommend that you buy, read, and work through Guerrilla Marketing for Artists, if you want to start selling your art or want to improve your art sales. My copy is already dog-eared and full of yellow highlights.
Barney Davey is at http://barneydavey.com