Build a community around your art work
We recently explored the advantages of writing an art blog; it is true though that not all art blogs are equally successful. It takes some skill in writing, some good content, imaginative presentation and a few other bits and bobs to attract an audience. In this article we will see how you could possibly start an art blog and gradually build a community of people who love your content and are always keen to spend a few minutes reading your articles.
1. Give your readers something to wait for
Perfection is yet to be achieved, for yourself and your readers alike. Even if you are a good and established artist there is still loads to learn. And this is a trip to knowledge that your readers are willing to follow you on. Make sure they understand that your art blog is a living entity…that it is something that develops and expands as you progress as an artist. None is perfect; but at least you have some answers on how they could improve; this is worth their time reading and waiting for. Explain how you will help them, give them a time frame of when you will post your next article, and stick to that plan!
2. Offer some genuine help
That said, to keep your readers interested in your work, you actually need to provide some real help, an actual solution to their problems. That help, might come in the form of advice, technical expertise or even just your life example. For each occasion, and each different audience different content applies and takes the form of “real advice”. In the case of an art blog you might want to consider writing tutorials, sharing tips and tricks, giving an insight of your technique or even bringing together the wealth of knowledge scattered on the web under one roof…your amazing art blog. To be successful with this one, you really need to understand what your audience is and what they really need to hear from you. The best way to do that is to interact with them.
3. Hear what your readers have to say
One of the biggest benefits of blogging is that it allows you to interact with your readers. Please, do not ignore this one as you actually lose half of the magic. People do honour you by spending a few minutes of their time reading your thoughts or admiring your art. When they ask you a question or try to start a conversation, do take some time and respond. That shows politeness, appreciation of their time, and also has the potential of giving you valuable feedback. Hearing what other people have to say is one of the best ways to discover weaknesses of your art and take steps to rectify or improve. Because even when you think your art is brilliant, there are many people out there whose opinion might help you take your work a bit further.
4. Help them learn through your own mistakes
Unless you are the absolute guru of art that can give advice to everyone, it is very good to not be afraid to share some of your mistakes. Everyone makes mistakes, and everyone should learn from those. You shouldn’t be ashamed of your past failures. It is just part of the learning process and even the most experienced in the field of arts go through downwards periods. Your readers follow your blog not to adore you like a god for your success but also to learn from you and to find an example to associate themselves. Unless you give them a realistic image of an artist that develops (with ups and downs), your readers will soon realise you are mainly trying to advertise yourself rather than mutually learn from each other.
5. Tell a story
Finally, even the most interesting and helpful information, when presented in the wrong way, it just risks to be ignored and buried under the Internet’s constant flow of information. I recently attended a very interesting day lecture about blogging and how important the role of “story-telling” is. Amy Morse, made sure before we left the room, we all understood that blogging is not just about giving people information. It is mainly about the way you present it, in an “entertaining” way, helping your readers to learn by telling them a story. Introduce characters, create a scene and describe your art, your advice, your ideas in the form of a story.
Instead of saying “use this technique to paint a portrait…”, next time try something like “after staying frustrated in my messy studio for two days, I read book X and discovered that the best way to paint a portrait is…
Your story now consists of a:
- Character: Yourself
- Scene: your messy studio
- Emotion: Frustration
- A real solution: Book X
- Redemption: you found the best solution
….and you are now sharing it with your reader. They will just love you.
Writing an art blog is not always easy. Writing an art blog that people will love is even trickier. Producing some good content is entirely up to you, however, if you are dedicated and spend some time reading a few good blogs (LearntoLoveYourWords would be a good example) then gradually your writing will improve. Following the list above will also guide you through the first steps of making your blog more appealing to readers. Hopefully, this little piece of advice will be a good starting point to your long journey of blogging about art! Good luck and see you out there!
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