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How to Sell Your Art Without Selling Out

Virtually everything you should have been taught in art school about earning a living from visual arts and crafts but weren't is how I'd describe Steve Popkin's 27 part, arts marketing course, How to Sell Your Art Without Selling Out.

Years ago there was a famous ad for Gillette shavers featuring a guy who was 'so impressed he bought the company', well I didn't buy Steve Popkin's company but I did the next best thing and became an affiliate after completing only the first two classes. That's how good the information was!

It's important you know this up front because I don't want to be covert about recommending this as a product. Should you decide to purchase How to Sell Your Art Without Selling Out through the links from this article, you will be giving me a little financial 'thank you' that says you trust my opinion and insight into Steve's course. With that out the way, lets get on with helping you decide if this course is for you.

I purchased the downloadable version of this course after baulking a few times because of the sales letter, the tried and tested landing page that promises the easy life, typical of online marketers for almost any get rich quick product you can imagine.

The sales letter includes, off putting, too good to be true quotes like:
"Now all you have to do is follow the system...and you can make more money in a weekend than most artists do in an entire year!"

"Almost overnight, you will go from selling a few pieces...to selling everything you make and taking orders for more!"

Fortunately these were the exceptions with the majority of claims sounding more solid than 'get rich quick'. Personally I don't think Steve needs these kind of 'instant, easy income' claims but would you wrestle with your decision to purchase if he said things like 'with a little research and effort you could improve your sales over time?' You'd probably stop reading, right?

I powered through all twenty seven classes, ranging from 10 to 40 minutes in length (with exception to the selling your art online section which runs a whopping 85 minutes). It took me the best part of two weeks. There's only so much 'art business' one can digest in a day!

Each class is delivered like a power point presentation. Each key point is displayed on a slide as Steve's voice communicates the lesson. There is a nice picture of Steve to look at too so it almost feels like he is there, delivering the lesson personally.

The first class starts with the answer to the most common question I've heard artists ask, how do I price my art? I've researched this question over and over in the last few years, discovering many different answers. Steve's is the only answer that lays out a realistic strategy for encouraging people to buy your more expensive artworks.

Not only that but Steve looks at different price points and, for me at least, shows you can sell work on ebay and through a gallery without damaging your reputation or undercutting your gallery prices. In fact selling on ebay could compliment your galleries marketing strategy.

That goes pretty much against everything I've heard about selling art on ebay if you want gallery representation - even my own advice to other artists which, in the past has been, if you want gallery representation, steer clear of ebay.

There is too much in the course for me to comment on everything but by the end of it you'll know so much about the arts industry and all the possibilities that you may find yourself bursting with ideas about where to find your market and how you will sell your art.

After pricing some of the highlights for me were:

  • Creating Art for Niche Applications

    It's true. Selling to a niche is much easier than trying to sell to everyone. Steve will tell you why and give you tips on how to do it without selling out.

  • How To Sell Your Art Online

    This will tell you virtually everything you need to know. The pro's and cons of gallery web sites, using ebay, creating your own web site etc. It's a massive section that could of been made even bigger if it looked at the 'Print on Demand' market such as Cafepress and Imagekind but still, more than enough to get you started online.

  • The Secrets Behind Weekend Art Shows

    Having tried and failed at selling my art at a weekend market for the best part of six months, Steve's tips may have come in handy back then.

  • How to Sell to Galleries

    I knew there was a reason I wasn't interested in galleries at this point in my career. Steve explains everything you need to know about approaching bricks and mortar galleries and shows why galleries aren't necessarily a good thing if you're just starting out.

  • One of a Kind, Production Work or Both...

    This class is a must for new and emerging artists. If you think working as a professional artist is simply selling each 'one of a kind piece' as you create it then this will open your eyes to a whole other side of professional art practice that you may not have considered.

There is so much more I could list. Head on over to Steve's Sales letter and click the link to view the full list with descriptions of the 27 topics covered.

I will say that almost every single class had something to offer in the way of new information. This is well worth the money. It's the kind of presentation that you'll refer back to when it comes to applying Steve's concepts. In fact I wouldn't mind this course delivered entirely as an audio presentation so I could keep it handy and refer back to it on my MP3 player.

There are few negatives to mention, apart from the sales letter. It does deliver on most claims and probably would deliver on all of them if you were highly motivated to get started right away (but you know how most people are and I think your brain will feel a little fried from overload after 27 classes).

Some of the classes tended to be a little repetitive but that's just the nature of the business. It really doesn't matter who you're selling to, it's all about finding your market and creating art for it. It's the different ways to find those markets that Steve gives you plenty of advice and ideas on.

I can say that the free bonuses didn't play much of a part in my decision to buy this product. They're certainly good value but other than access to Steve personally, I don't know how much of an impact they'll have on my future business. I certainly don't feel like reading Napolean Hill's 'Think and Grow Rich' as an ebook after pushing through Steve's course. I'll leave it to you to decide if the bonus materials sound like value for money.

How to Sell Your Art Without Selling Out is a course that is ideally suited to any artist just starting out or any artist who's been trying to sell their art for a few years and not really getting any where close to a decent income.

It really doesn't matter what kind of Visual artist or Crafts person you are the strategies will be relevant to you (Steve is a glass artist and uses his art in many examples).

If you've been all over the internet looking for information on the business side of art (I know I have) then you'll find everything you need to know, explained in simple to understand language.

Once you've completed this course you'll be able to have a fresh look at the art you produce and will have plenty of new strategies to help you do what you really want to do... create art.

Having purchased and completed the course myself, I highly recommend it. Read through the sales letter as it actually does tell you quite a bit about what to expect.

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