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Workshops: Artist and Rep Team Up to Teach

Local Workshops

In “Painting in the South of France” I asked Scottish painter Julie Snyder about her September workshop in Provence. (You can still register.)

I continued the conversation about local workshops.

Kinds of workshops

I’ve run uninstructed painting workshops for artists for years, mostly regularly scheduled on a weekday evening. Models are hired to pose for painters, sculptors and for those who want to draw. Mine are different from many out there – the model assuming one pose for the duration (sometimes for more than one sitting) so we can get a full painting done.


"Painting the Model"

I met Margaret Danielak when she was giving a brilliant talk on art sales at Jennifer McChristian's studio. I started to promote Margaret’s seminars to artists I knew personally because I felt her information was so valuable. In 2010, Margaret invited me to co-present the workshop to give another viewpoint and real-life experiences as a gallery represented artist and how I applied the information to reach my goals. It was pretty awesome to say the least – I thoroughly enjoyed this.

Artist Rep Margaret Danielak & Artist Julie Snyder

About twice a year Margaret and I offer ‘The Art of Selling Art’ for visual artists through my sister site The Art Engine. We both have marketing backgrounds and are differently qualified to deliver the workshop with our unique viewpoints – both sides of the coin in selling art. The combination gives a multi-dimensional view of the art world and how to navigate in it. Personally I think Margaret is genius - she distills the actions and activities down to the essential elements. We work well together, both of us bringing different aspects and we really enjoy each other's company.

We cover all the basics but the main focus is real-life coaching where the artists get to 'sell' their art and we pose as buyers. We receive great feedback and it’s career changing for many. Not only is this really valuable – it’s also eye opening and fun! It's very rewarding to see these artists move forward with their careers.

This fall we are implementing a new series of one-day Artists’ Toolbox workshops on the basics of Photographing Your Art Work – from camera to computer; Facebook Marketing 101 for Artists and Setting Up an Online Portfolio.

The Goals

  • The model painting sessions allow me to stay connected with other artists and paint from life.

  • Instructional art workshops are a great way of enriching artists and making them more able.

  • Marketing workshops allow me to share my successes.  I started The Art Engine as a resource for visual artists. Artists are very important to society; they set the level of the culture. Through education and these workshops artists become empowered to make money with their art. These also supplement my income as an artist. It’s my way of giving back, and yet I can be compensated too – that’s a win-win in my book. 

The Audiences

  •  Model painting attracts intermediate to advanced painters and fearless beginners. Serious painters know that they have to practice their painting to achieve excellence - it's the '10,000' hour rule.
  • All kinds of artists come to the marketing and art sales workshops and they are of all levels and all ages. We've had painters - abstract, landscape, still life and figurative; photographers, sculptors and collage artists and ceramicists and even artists who work in fabric and glass. 

The Locations

  • If it's painting, I hold them in the studio. I'm a member of the Businessmen's Art Institute, Montrose, CA where I have use of a great studio space.
  • We like to stage the Art of Selling Art workshops in galleries. A professional environment being surrounded by high quality work definitely gives the attendees an idea of where their work could end up hanging. We also work with art associations for their members and hold them in their meeting spaces.  

“Paint out for artists at the Galleria, Glendale"

The Delivery

We structure 'The Art of Selling Art' seminar with marketing in the morning and the role-playing drills in the afternoon. We teach artists how to find and approach galleries for representation, the essential elements of the portfolio and how to use technology for low cost marketing. And we pose as buyers and the attendees have the opportunity to 'sell' us their work - and we drill them on how to close the sale.

We work in tandem - Margaret usually leads and I talk about how I applied the info and my experiences. We use real life, common sense and a good dose of humor to deliver the message that you can sell your art. 

The Teaching Skills

I love teaching. There's a lot of prep in my classes, especially for new students. I explain concepts, demonstrate them and have the students do exercises and drills to gain the skills. It's fun and rewarding.

To keep my skills fresh, I'm always on the lookout for workshops, books, and videos. As a working artist I am trying new things and learning all the time. I'm autodidactic - and I'm aware of the learning and study process.

The Results

Every time an artist 'gets' something and expresses an 'ah ha' moment, I feel I'm doing my job. There are many and I'm happy to be part of that.

The most surprising thing to me is how much I enjoy them! No kidding, it’s so rewarding to work with artists and see them rise out of self-doubt onto a new plateau where they begin to actually plan their next art sale. At the marketing events - we call these moments of understanding - artists' mojo. The Art of Selling Art workshops could be called 'Mojo for Artists.'

Margaret Danielak is one of my favorite people and it’s been a pleasure getting to know Julie as a result of our connection. If you missed the other articles about artist representatives or workshops, please follow the links below.

What was the best workshop you ever delivered or attended and why?



The Productive Artist: How to Get (and Keep) an Artist Representative

The Productive Artist: How to Work With an Artist Representative

The Productive Artist -- How to Find an Artist Representative 

The Productive Artist: How to Get Your Money's Worth From Workshops 

Painting in the South of France 

Art Consultant Matt McKinley Provides Art Solutions for Artists, Collectors and Arts Organizations

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