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If you’re a part of Art.com’s Original Art and Photography group (or just looking for places to sell your art online), you might have some questions about Art.com’s upcoming websites, Artist Rising and Sistino. Specifically, what the difference is between the two, and how they’ll help you sell you work.
After attending the webinar last Wednesday, I think I’ll be able to answer some of those questions without repeating too much of what I said last week. (Click on the images below to open the entire picture from the webinar in a new window.)
Artist Rising is a website for artists where you will have your own personal online gallery. It will be similar to OAP now, in that you can upload, organize and present your original work for everyone to see, but will have a new feature that will let you sell your original artwork right from your gallery space.
If you’re a current OAP member, or if you join now, you’ll have your own individual Artist Rising URL (http://something. . .) and can publicize your gallery and artwork by creating links to it from other webpages, or by any other method you’d like.
You’ll also be able to manage all of your Print-On-Demand pieces from your gallery and set up additional pages about yourself too, including a bio, artist statement and more.
Sistino is quite a bit different from Artist Rising, but the two WILL work together. Sistino will be an online marketplace where buyers will browse and search for art prints, just like they do already at Art.com, but specifically for contemporary art by living artists.
Sistino will display a LIMITED AMOUNT of the artwork in your Artist Rising gallery. For non-paying members, you will ONLY be allowed 3 works. Select and Premium Studio members, who pay for the privilege, will be allowed 15 and 40 works respectively.
When Sistino shows one of your Print-On-Demand works, it will also include a link to your Artist Rising gallery. Purchases of the prints in either location will result in the same royalties – 10% of the sale will go to you.
Sales of original art is changing too. Although OAP in the past hadn’t charged commissions for sales of original artwork (since sales were outside the OAP website) NOW it will.
In an email I received from Barbara Gnos, Director of Marketing for Artist Rising, she states, “In the near future, Sistino will be pilot testing full online transaction capabilities for the sale of original works, for which a commission structure will apply.”
Another change coming to the Original Art and Photography galleries (once it officially becomes Artist Rising) is an increase in how many images you can upload. Artists with the free membership will be allowed 50 works of art instead of the current 16, and paying members will get unlimited image space.
The actual launch date of Artist Rising and Sistino is set to occur within the next month. For 8-10 weeks, Sistino will be a part of a “several million dollar” marketing campaign targeted specifically at contemporary art buyers.
This marketing campaign will include using Art.com to channel current buyers into Sistino; PR spots featuring individual stories of Artists; and also traditional marketing techniques, both online using keyword advertising, and offline using print and TV ads.
No one at the webinar mentioned any changes being made to the image and file size requirements that are currently in place – 6mb maximum for uploaded poster files. I would hope that this is one of the items they’re planning on upgrading soon.
The Art.com webinar included a To-Do list for artists if you’d like your Print-On-Demand works featured on Sistino when it launches. I’ve retyped it almost word-for-word below.
1. Get your Gallery Ready
-Log into (or create) your account at www.originals.art.com
-Click on “my gallery”
-(Upload if necessary) and organize your artwork into collections
2. Set up Print-On-Demand for your Images
3. Write your Artist Statement and Bio
4. Add Descriptions and Tags
According to the webinar, for best exposure set up your Print-On-Demand before January 22nd. After the 22nd there will be a temporary holding period before any new art will be approved, and there was no mention at the webinar of how long that holding period will be or why it’s being put in place.
Your artist statement, artist bio, descriptions, and tags MUST BE completed before your work will appear on Sistino. And, even if you submit your art for Print-On-Demand, it will need to go through a review process to test its suitability for the site.
All Print-On-Demand works that you may currently have for sale on Art.com will stay listed until June 30th, according to the email I received from Barbara Gnos. After that time, however, there are no guarantees that it will remain on Art.com, OR that any of your artwork listed on Sistino will appear on Art.com.
If you’re a member, there is a detailed Artist Transition Guide available here at the OAP website. If you’d like to hear what other members are saying, check out the current discussion at OnlineVisualArtists.com forum, started by Sarah Schoenfeld.
As I mentioned in my article last week, this seems like a good time to get on board – if the whole world becomes curious about Sistino, you’ll be wishing you had your art there for them to find.
So get your work uploaded and ready, and remember that deadline of January 22nd.