I’ve been painting for a pretty long time on a regular basis, but having announced that for at least the next year I would be doing a daily(ish) painting and then posting it for sale on Ebay and other sites, I find I’m both addicted to this practice and also a bit in a quandary to keep coming up with fresh ideas. But let’s back up and see where I’ve been and what has happened, just in case you want to follow a similar path.
My postings began in very early January. I planned on doing small works, mostly 5 x 7’s, some 6 x 8’s and a few 8 x 10’s. I ordered over 200 panels and started to paint them mid December so that I would have a stock to fill in gaps when I was on holiday or teaching and couldn’t get to my easel. I was nervous and excited, but mostly nervous about posting so often. I have a fair email list but would this consistent in-box posting put people off??
After letting people know this is what I was going to do and the date I was going to start, and then encouraging my peeps to either look and bid or just delete – no pressure- I started with a very strong painting that I hoped would sell and sent the first email. It sold with multiple bids!
And then I sent a second painting, and a third, and a fourth……day after day……It was too much. I was getting a serious number of ‘unsubscribes’! It freaked me out. I know from reading other blogs that we need to find our own ‘tribe’. But it reminded me of all the people we think are our friends on FB, but they aren’t really. OK, no problem. Re-think how I might feel. So I went to every other day.
After 2 weeks I needed to take deep breaths before opening my email to see who else was, ‘no longer interested’, but then things started to stabilize and fewer were opting out. After a month (and several more sales) people were dropping me notes to say how much they enjoyed seeing what I was doing. People at my local Trader Joe’s would talk to me about what they saw. It was very encouraging. And now I didn’t want to let anyone down!
It’s been just over 50 paintings and this is what I’ve learned so far:
- People will unsubscribe and that’s OK. I lost about 12% of my list, but when I really looked at who unsubscribed they often didn’t open any of my emails.
- People are watching….way more than I thought they were.
- People have let me know they are encouraged by what I’m doing.
- Sales will happen, but not always directly. One client bought 3 paintings after the auctions ended, including one which was a larger piece.
- It’s hard to stay motivated. It’s just a given. But create regardless.
If you have a daily or almost daily practice, I would love to know how this has changed and affected you and your work. I will post about this again in a few months.