Artists’ Open Studios are a great idea for artists whether they are working from home or a separate allocated studio space.
For artists who are not working with galleries, this is a great way to get exposure and get confident in meeting and working with your audience.
If you’re thinking why bother, here are my top reasons to take part
Exhibiting at Open Studios allows you to gauge responses to any new work directly with your audience. If you have been experimenting with new techniques or your work has evolved into a new direction, then Open Studios is a great way to get some feedback about it.
2. For artists that have been sharing new work online through social media, open studios really lets you have the conversations in person that you may not have with a fan or follower online. It is not far removed from a band trying out a new song on an audience at open mic night at a bar, or a comedian testing new material on a small audience at a local club, before taking it to the big stage. You want to use the opportunity at open studios to hear what people say about your work and learn what resonates with them
3. Many artists want to work with galleries but are unclear how to get in front of the dealers they want to show with. Open Studios gives you the chance to invite these people to your studio. In fact I highly encourage anyone opening their studios to invite as many gallerists as possible.
For the gallerist, the occasion is less pressured than making an appointment for a studio visit, and the informal nature of it, makes for a better first meeting.
4. Finally selling work directly at open studios lets you earn without paying a commission and grow your mailing list which anyone in business today knows, is an asset that needs to be built consistently.
You can have visitors sign up to your mailing list when they visit, or you can list your event on a site like Eventbrite and have free tickets, which requires the guest to submit their email address which you can then add to your mailing list. It’s a really good idea that I have used and seen many artists use successfully. You can even do this for any private view you might be planning.
Approaching your Open Studios weekend as an opportunity rather than a chore is going to put you in the right mindset to make the best of it. Just think of all the good things that can come out of it!
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