Artist Amanda Evanston is a painter and instructor whose online community is called The Insider’s Studio. She offers weekly classes, tips and tricks, and opportunities to paint, learn, and grow. Amanda also offers larger online classes, like her recent Abstract Faces class, that are open to anyone. This past year has seen the temporary closing of her retail space, but she has had success selling her collections of art online. Her colorful, splashy paintings can brighten even the cloudiest of days.
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Here are some great takeaways from our conversation:
- If you’re considering going to art school, as Amanda did, first evaluate it to make sure it will be a worthy investment. I’m not saying that you can find everything from art school on YouTube, but you can find an awful lot of free resources that can help you in making and selling your art.
- The only way you’re going to get better at making art is to make more art. You also need to recognize that you will make a lot of bad art before you make great art. That’s OK, because you need to keep practicing to get better.
- A great way to get started on a painting is to start with what Amanda calls “chaos layers”. Just put paint on the page, no matter what color, no matter what form. That can be an underlayer that you will cover up later, but at least it got you started.
- We talked about ways you can offer online classes. You can use a host, like Teachable or Kajabi, where you pay a hosting fee and you get to keep most of the income from the class sales, or you can use a shared site, which will offer your classes to many thousands of people, but they will take a bigger cut of your income.
- For membership groups, we’ve talked about this before, but it bears repeating. It won’t just be you running the group. Others within the group will help you just by throwing out suggestions and offering their own expertise.
- One thing they offer in the membership is an opportunity to trade your artwork with others. This is a great way to get a collection of small art from other artists.
- We talked about the retail world of selling art in storefronts. Brick and mortar stores have been greatly affected by being shut down for months. If you’d like to try selling in those kinds of stores again, do your homework to determine if the customers have come back to that area, and if the store is offering an experience that will get them to come back again.
- It’s a great strategy to release your art for sale in collections over certain time periods. That way your customers will learn to expect a new batch of art every few months and they will look forward to it.