Branding part three; as an artist
As an artist, branding can be especially hard. Part of this might be that the business side of art can feel wrong. A lot of artists (including me) feel like their art is part of their heart and soul. Marketing that can be hard and just feel weird.
There are two ways to stand out as an artist and so to brand yourself.
Having a very clear consistent style
Branding the rest
Having a consistent style
An easy branding method can be just having a very clear style. There are some artists whose work I would recognise anywhere.
My favourite example of this is one of the artists that I have seen on almost all social media sites; Leonard Afremov. His style is so clear that I can easily pick it out.
This is also something that you see a lot in cartoonists as well since that drawing style especially is something you can really stylise.
The problem with this is that it is hard for newer artists like me. 7 years might seem like a long time, but I feel like there is still so much to learn and so much to develop. I am not yet consistent in my style. I still like to change my style and try out new things and I don’t want to settle on something that I don’t fully understand yet.
Of course, every artist keeps learning but when you are still all over the place your work might not be so easily recognisable.
So when you don’t do that it is time to just brand the rest.
Branding the rest
A custom signing
Values and goals
When your work is not recognisable there is still something that shows it is your work. Your name on the bottom of the paper.
Some of my favourite artists make their signature absolutely beautiful. Like Loish’s in these paintings! Using the same style or version of your name can brand your work in some work. One of my own flaws is the fact that I always forget to sign my work, but when I did I always used SJE. Now that I have started Sofie Arts I guess I should create a signature with that.
Having a recognisable signature on all you work creates a consistently over the whole body of work. Something that people can remember to look for.
Added bonus is the fact that signed work looks more professional and might be worth more in the long run!
Another way is to just use the same brand that you want to use for selling on all your artists sites. So you make your portfolio in the same colours. Use the same name when you share your work and try to go with the same principle as business branding.
This is might be hard since mostly the business site is a little boring and not really what you might have imagined doing. But by doing this you will get more chance to get discovered and get more time to spend on the actual painting.
Places where you can show your brand, are not just online but also by the packing of artwork you’ll be sending or when you talk to people in real life by using business cards and such.
If you didn’t brand your business already you can always consider starting there. Or you can use your own name or create a name and turn it into a logo and just use it all around the web.
Values and Goals
Since branding is also in a way a story you can also brand your art this way. Telling why you make art or what you love about it can be part of your name.
For example; I make art because I love coming up with daydreams and putting them to paper. I want to be able to paint fantasy and scenes from my imagination.
If you spread this message with your artwork people might start to remember you by it.
You can make that message into anything you want. Maybe, you paint for love or piece or to remember people by. Everything can be a message.
Another thing you can use is your personal story. A personal story is always powerful since you are the only one with that exact story while other still will be able to relate. Just like for overall branding this can be a great way to show your personality and stand out.
You can include it in descriptions on your personal site or portfolio.
Branding as an artist might be hard, but it isn’t impossible. Like I said before, there are artists whose work I would recognise anywhere and that is what you want. When you connect with people you want them to remember you afterwards.
It doesn’t matter which skill level you are on you can always start with getting your name out there.