More Articles

Tell Your Story, Sell More Art

The Price is Right

Confessions of a Professional Art Gallery Closer

How to Create Raving Fans by Telling the Story of Your Art

Burnout & Its (Sometimes Surprising) Consequences

How to Get Into A Gallery, and Succeed With A Gallery

The Power of Persistence

Build a Budget for Success: How I Tripled My Income in 2 Weeks

Learning to Sell Art: Investing in Yourself

Top Traits of Successful Artists

What Makes Art Remarkable?

Working for Free

The Evolution (and Re-Evolution) of An Art Business

Ann Rea: Artist, Entrepreneur, Instant Success

How Do You Know When It’s Time To Become An Artist?

8 Ways to Improve Your Online Portfolio

Artists, Do You Need an Agent?

The Power of Consultative Selling

How to Make Your Customers Fall in Love with You

Artist Housing Projects

The Pinterest Guide to Selling Art Online

Artists Who Sell: How to Write a Killer Sales Page (and why)

The 5 Biggest Mistakes that Artists Make on Their Blogs and How You Can Avoid Them

Business Plans for Artists: Here, I Did It for You!

How to Write An Artist's Statement That Doesn't Suck

How to Make Your Art Stand Out Online?

10 Strategies to Improve Your Art Sales

Social Sharing on Artist Websites & Online Galleries

Why Artists Should Avoid Gallery Representation

5 Art Pricing Lessons I Learned the Hard Way

How to Research Your Online Art Market

The Crowdfunding Guide for Artists: Part 1

12 Things all Starving Artists Believe

Personal Branding for Artists

How Paula Manning Lewis Has Sold More Than 30,000 Pieces of Art

How to Build An Art Business While Working a Day Job

Painting Terms

Mixing Colors

The Benefits of Buying Art Online

Beginning Your Journey as an Artist

Art for Art's Sake

8 Ways to Improve Your Online Portfolio

by


"Beaded Bead Bracelets" by artist Kathy King. Photo Credit: Jason Dowdle

Is your website really showing your art to its best advantage?

I regularly review artist's websites, and have visited thousands of them in the past couple of years. There is a huge disparity in online portfolios. It isn't hard to tell who is serious, and who is not.

Are you truly proud of the portfolio you are presenting to the public? If your website images could use some help, check out this list for ways to make some improvements.

1. Make your collection cohesive. Is the work on your website in a mature signature style which is distinctively your own? It should all look like it was created by the same artist. Working in drastically different styles and mediums and presenting a mishmash of them on your website can make you look like you're not sure what you want to do, or are an amateur.

2. Selectively remove images. Are you showing primarily one style or medium, and have a piece or two included that really don't fit? Your brand is more memorable when you make one statement which is consistent. Plus, a critical appraisal of your overall body of work will be affected by the least successful piece in your portfolio. Take a hard critical look at the images on your site (or get a second opinion) and pull out those images that are the weakest.

3. Show current work. If the last time you updated your online portfolio was a year or two ago, it's out of date. Have photos made on a regular basis to keep your website fresh and present your most exciting new work.

4. Don't compromise on the photography. The images of your work are the most important way you communicate to others about yourself and your art, and your level of professionalism. If your photos are dark, blurry, or amateurish, it speaks volumes. I've heard all kinds of excuses from artists as to why they don't have really excellent photos taken of their work. What they don't realize is how many opportunities they are losing because of poor quality photos. I jury artists quite a few times a year, and consider photo quality to be paramount. A wonderful piece of art which is poorly photographed is rejected. Every time.

5. Lead with your strengths. When visiting your website, the first word out of the viewer's mouth should be "Wow!" Show your best images right out of the box – don't expect website visitors to click through boring pages to get to the good stuff. Knock their socks off, and invite them in.


Vase (detail) by artist Charan Sachar

6. Enable a closer view. You have great photos on your site. But can they be enlarged for a close-up view? This is a must. Nothing but thumbnail shots is almost heartbreaking. Make sure you also have detail photos of art to show intricate surfaces.

7. Show more views, especially of 3D work. The more chances you give the viewer to get a really good look at your work from different angles, the better they can "experience" your artwork.

8. Show in context. Photos of your art in an interior setting help others to visualize it better. Use models for jewelry and wearables. Photos can also show scale and context, so that visitors can imagine owning your work.

Artwork courtesy of Kathy King and Charan Sachar.

Carolyn EdlundThis article is courtesy of
Carolyn Edlund, founder of Artsy Shark, is a business writer, speaker and consultant for artists. She is the Executive Director of the Arts Business Institute, presenting at art business workshops throughout the United States. Carolyn works with artists every day in strategy sessions designed to help them structure their businesses, set and reach their goals. Find out more about scheduling your own business consultation with Carolyn here: http://www.artsyshark.com/build-your-art-business/New window