Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Thanksgiving Weekend Studio Sale & What Makes a Painting "Saleable"

Jan Blencowe


Welcome to the Thanksgiving Weekend Sale!

Title: The Way Home
Media: acrylic
Size: 30 in X 30 in (76.2 cm X 76.2 cm)
Price: $300 USD, + shipping and insurance costs

How to Purchase:
send me an email

I have a great deal to be thankful for in my life and the joy of painting and the ability to pursue my art are near the top of the list along with my family, my friends and my faith. In this season of gratitude and giving, I want to say thank you to all of you who have purchased my work, read my blog, browsed at my website, visited me at a show or contacted me to let me know you enjoy my work. Your support and interest mean a great deal and I appreciate it!

In this troubled economy I am committed to pricing my paintings in a way that keeps them affordable for as many people as possible. This painting is part of a series that comprised a solo show I had back in January, a number of the others are either sold or in galleies. It's original price framed, in that venue was $2,250. Yes, you read that right. I have moved on to other sizes, subjects and series of paintings and this one is now $300, unframed. Shipping and insurance will be added to the price, no mark up, just the actual shipping costs via UPS.

I hope someone falls in love with it, is drawn in by the imagery of the path that leads home, and is able to afford it at $300, when $2,250 would have made it impossible for them to ever own it.

There are one or two more from this series that will be posted over the weekend at the same price so come back throughout the weekend.

What makes a Work "Saleable"?

This question was posted on an artist discussion board and I think it's a good one to discuss. Here's the answer that I shared with the other artists there:

If we can figure out the answer to that question in this discussion thread then we'll all be on our way to making our first million LOL :) I'm no "marketing guru" but I do have a few thoughts to share. Quality is the first issue that comes to mind. While beauty may be in the eye of the beholder amateurish work is always easy to spot. Whatever your medium or craft a mastery of the basic principles and elements of design should be evident in your work. If you distort or abstract intentionally it should be obvious to the viewer that this is an accomplished artist expressing a unique vision and taking artistic liberty, and not just someone fancying themselves an "artiste" and scribbling in an untrained clumsy way. That is not to say one must have a traditional art degree, self taught artists have simply acquired their knowledge in a non-traditional way (this may be a distinct advantage). Technical experise is also required especially when working with clay, stone, photography, print making etc. But no less important than using the right support, canvas, archival varnish etc. That leads me to say that artists and artisans should opt to use the best quality materials they can afford. I believe when you can tell a collector that you paint on high quality linen, use artist grade paints and seal and finish work with an archival varnish that won't yellow over time and includes UV protection clients tend to trust your work as being valuable and respect you as an artist because you value your own work. Beyond that I think knowing your audience (or market) is extremely important. That means marketing your work to the right people. Contemporary abstract work does not sell much in the traditionally conservative, affluent New England area where I live. These folks while not necessarily politically conservative are definitely conservative and traditional when it comes to their homes which are generally colonials or salt box style and decorated with traditional, understated elegant furnishings, nothing flashy, or modern. But go a few hours west to NYC and that's a whole other story!! Wildlife artists need to find those who are passionate about thre enviroment, animals etc. If you create work with spiritual meanings you need to find people who are in touch with their own spirituality. You get the idea. The right gallery and exhibit venue is essential and on the internet the right key words and tags for you website and blog posts are a must. After that I think the best advice is remain true to your own unique artistic vision and develop your artistic voice. When you are your authentic self I think you will connect with the right people, people to whom your work "speaks" and touches their heart.

Holiday Shoppe Museum Quality Prints

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See more available landscape prints and abstract prints


My new book is now available. A beautiful coffee table book featureing thirty-one luminous landscape paintings to enjoy.

Preview or purchase here

Also visit my on-line bookstore The Best Books for Artists filled with gifts for the art lover in your life.

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