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« Art Business: The Bones of Your Art Business | Main | Technology: Securing Your Computer »

Art Business: The Brain and Face of Your Art Business

Seeing a lot of skeletons around town, I got to thinking about the comparisons between our skeletal system and the bones of an art business.

There are so many parts you can take for granted when things go right. All the while, you are using muscles attached to about 206 bones. Those bones connect to a skeletal structure that holds all the parts together while your body performs multiple functions.

And you never have to push any buttons - it just happens. Amazing.

Don't you wish your art business was that smart? Unlike your body, where most things magically seem to take care of themselves, you have to create the structure of your business. Then you have to make the connecting parts work.

To smoothly direct all the functions in your art business, you start with the bones and keep them strong.

You are the Brains of Your Art Business.

Regardless of who helps you, you are in charge of your art business.

Every thought you have, every decision you make, and every action you take comes from your mind. You are the brains of your business.

The quality of your thinking directly influences your attitudes. Like taking daily vitamins to strengthen your health, you can tune up your thinking in a matter of a few minutes:

  • Before you start your day, take a few minutes to decide what you want to accomplish.
  • Before you pick up the phone or write to someone, think about the best outcome for each of you.
  • At the end of your day, take a few minutes to record what you did and what made you feel good.

The Face of Your Art Business is Your Identity and Brand

Twenty-two bones surround your brain, make your face look like you, support your eyes, create your nose and help you hear.

Your audience gets to recognize you, trust you and want to do business with you through the face you put on your art business - a combination of identity and brand.

Your identity answers the question "Do I know you?"

Your identity comes from a combination of your signature body of work and the visual cues you use to promote your work.

"When it comes to a signature body of art, work hard on having it exhibited any and everywhere you can. Recently, art lovers looking at my work in two regional galleries, smiled and said...."...ah yes, that's Bruce Haley's photography...I'd know it anywhere."

You can improve the face of your business by toning one or more of these features:

  • Develop your art talents and exhibit only your best work
  • Update your graphics on print and online promotions
  • Upgrade the experience people have when they interact you with you

Your brand triggers the thought "Do I trust you?"

Your brand exists in the minds of the people who see you, your art and experience your marketing. It's how they remember you, like the way they recognize a face.

"It is gratifying when people say they remember my work. The recognition of my style is verification that my work continues to remain in the memories of viewers after they leave the gallery. And I love the connection between my art-message and the viewer." Patricia Bartlett

You can influence how people remember you by the way in which you see, hear and respond to them:

  • Let the viewers express the connection.
  • Listen and note what they say when they are looking at your work.
  • Ask them what they like about your art when they pay you a compliment.

Don't put a mask on your art business.

You care about the quality of your art.
You take care of your health and appearance.
You owe it to yourself to do the same for your art business, starting with your thinking and the business face you present.

The rewards of appreciation, recognition and resilience are worth it - and so are you. 

Please comment here, or, post your replies on Facebook and Twitter.


You do have to do the workout yourself but you don't have to do it alone. Consider joining the A.C.T. community of artists in our online programs.

If you are an emerging artist and want to build a strong business foundation, check out "Start Your Business."

If you have already set up your business, and want some company strengthening your art business thinking and structure you can "Build Your Art Business."

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Reader Comments (1)

Hi, Aletta, it's Sue from the Alumni Forum.

I love this article! In my own work, I talk about how you can Unmask Your Brand, and uncover its true essence. Lovely to see the mask metaphor in your piece.

Resonant, lovely.


October 22, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterSue Kearney

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