Artists have always been known as people who create their works and exhibit it in either museums or galleries. They have been creating pieces that represent their spiritual investment in their works and these works intrigue their audience.
However, it has come to a point where these artists are now becoming entrepreneurs. Long back artists were driven more towards the patronage of benefactors and the art consuming public and the idea of commercialising art was at the very least at the core of their operations.
Some of the most revered artists of former times had their works only discovered after they had passed. This is simply because they could have been great artists who were not all that great at marketing their works.
Plenty of renowned painters and sculptors in centuries past did, in fact, make a very decent living working to commission for wealthy patrons, simply viewing it as another discipline within which to exercise their creative drive.
Artists have since begun to explore the business side of art, transition from creative to business owners.
However, the question is how an artist becomes an entrepreneur. The entrepreneurial discourse shows that entrepreneur appears as more masculine than feminine and studies have shown that women’s participation in entrepreneurship has led to gender discrimination especially when they are seeking start-up capital.
However, as artist venture into entrepreneurship it is important that all genders are given the opportunity to venture into the business world having support from the community.
The National Gallery has been working towards helping female artist rise in the art industry as noted in 2007 when they held the Hibernation Exhibition in honour of women artists and this encouraged them to reach out to the business side of art.
When an artist ventures into the business world it is important to consider that for them turn their practice into a business, they need to realise what they produce has monetary value.
This means that the prices should never be undervalued and economic when matched against inputs and creative process.
Artists can start by selling works that are portable such as jewellery or small sculptures. This mediation in the scale of artworks creates a segmentation of markets to which the artist can identify and partition demography with sound data.
Martinez (2017) states that artists do not usually place much thought into creating a business plan as they venture into entrepreneurship but having a well-thought out artist business plan can be the difference between success and struggle as an art entrepreneur.
The business plan will serve as a helping guide for the artist on their journey to becoming an art entrepreneur as they learn how to put together a business plan has been an important tool for becoming an art entrepreneur.
It is also a great idea to associate with art dealers as they are likely to source buyers for pieces of art in order to sell them to various art enthusiasts.
If one is dedicated, their business could grow allowing him to open his own art gallery, at the same time helping other artists make their works visible.
Art dealers are as much artists themselves as they have an eye for good artworks.
Artists should formulate marketing strategies that will be effective towards promoting his business.
Having an idea of who is likely to purchase or distribute the artwork will help craft a branding and artist marketing strategy that will help convey and express the body of work.
The artist now has to define the artworks that will be crucial to their business plan because it helps define the target market as this also allows the artist to set goals about what they want to achieve with regards to sales.
Artists, as entrepreneurs, should take note of the continuing advent of Social Media as it can be used to promote their works.
The creation of a blog that offers a behind-the-scenes look at the creative process and expansion of the Artist Statement as it provides a platform for personal insights.
The artist-entrepreneur must also utilise popular Social Media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter platforms and share information about your business with your followers.
These social media platforms will also help engage with other entrepreneurs. There are platforms tailor made for the promotion of art such as Artsy, which offers promotional space to a greater mass of buyers and consumers as it is dedicated to that end.