Social Media for Artists at Gallery1313

Workshop last night courtesy of Gallery1313 a little gallery on Queen West just east of the library. There’s consistently interesting work in there – go check it out.

I met with nearly a dozen artists last night – painters, sculptors, photographers to talk about using social media to expand their reach and increase their profile.

They were without question, a fantastic group of people. At the top of the night we had some minor tech glitches meaning no internet for a social media workshop, which is a little like having a cooking class without any food. It was taken care of by Ozana and Phil with aplomb and style and thank you both so much.

Here’s what was interesting – if we’d had internet immediately, we would have plunged directly into the presentation. As it was it gave us a chance to talk – to embrace the social part of social media and find out who was there and why and much more about them than just their names.

I think as a result we had a wonderfully open discussion, a real back and forth about who was doing what, who was using which tools for what means, and who had no experience at all. Because we got so very into it, it was a conversation, not a presentation and that’s what I always hope for. Ideas were shared, some sites I didn’t know about are now on my list, and I think people enjoyed themselves.

It was more of a facilitation than a presentation – at one point we threw the powerpoint out the window (not literally) and focussed on specifics – showing then how to create a page, the targeting ability of a Facebook ad by creating one, a discussion about what is a “like” what is a “friend” what is a “tag” and does anyone ever sell art on LinkedIn? Here’s a great example of an artist blog, here’s a YouTube video of someone’s work, know how important it is not to have just a great image, but a quality properly sized version of that image. That even if you think your target market is “everyone” – you do have a way of narrowing that down to people who are genuinely interested.  At one point someone asked how late I was willing to stay to keep discussing these things, and we did run a bit late. Because we were genuinely involved.

In short – I’m looking forward to connecting with these artists again, seeing their work and talking to them.

Many thanks again to Phil, Ozana, Gallery1313, and all the participants for their time and enthusiasm – it was an excellent way to spend a dark and rainy night.

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