If you’re an artist, this is an absolutely amazing time to be alive. Unlike any period in history, the internet gives those of us who work in the visual arts a chance at equal footing, no matter where we live or how new we are to the art world.
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Every day, artists in the global community get together online to collaborate, critique, exhibit, buy, and even sell their art.
Online art forums, for example, are a great way to get feedback on your work. Nowhere else can you hear hundreds of artist’s opinions on what you’re doing well, or where you could improve.
WetCanvas.com is the biggest art forum on the internet, with a ton of great features for artists. As a WetCanvas member you can upload images of your art for critique, discuss art history, color theory, current works, and much more. If you’re not familiar with the site, check it out and join up. Membership is free and, if I remember correctly, comes with a five dollar coupon for Dick Blick Art Materials.
Tomorrow I’ll actually be featuring an artist whose work I first saw at WetCanvas, so there’s plenty of talent there too.
Another available option for artists is blogging. Instead of posting articles, many artists post daily paintings or drawings. Quite a number of artists online have increased their exposure and fan base enormously just by letting such a wide audience see their work every day.
More than just a marketing tool, these “painting-a-day” artists usually offer their daily works for sale, and for some of them it results in a dependable income.
When I went searching for some painting-a-day blogs to add to my links page I actually got stuck for over an hour looking through the art of Karin Jurick. I’m extremely impressed with her paintings and I know you’ll like them as well. Her style is loose, painterly, and quite beautiful, especially in her depiction of people. You can find her most recent stuff here, but be sure to look around her entire website for more of her paintings.
If you’re interested in starting your own painting blog, I’d suggest WordPress, a free blogging program which I use for this site. It’s extremely adaptable and I highly recommend it.
If you’re not into blogging, however, there are websites available which will help you get online permanently and without fuss. EBSQ is one such online community for self-representing artists and has been around for quite a while. It offers a virtual “gallery space” for members and many other online presentation tools that make setting up easy. They do charge a membership fee, but at $7.50 per month it’s fairly cheap.
Another online alternative for artists is Imagekind, which sells prints and reproductions of images uploaded by artists like you. Although new, Imagekind has quickly gained popularity online. You can read a lot more about it this Thursday, right here.
The internet can be a whole new world of opportunity for artists in many different ways. If you’ve been looking to increase your exposure or get back into the art scene, put your art online and get involved. You never know where it could lead you.