Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Lept, where I lept to!

So...more than a month post-launch, what's going on?

I made my first priority doing some children's portrait samples. I only have 3, but did already get a gift certificate order for Christmas. I have a portrait of my son playing hockey on the board, but (YAY!!) animal commissions have knocked that off my front page.

I did some life drawing workshops, really worthwhile and fun, but I feel at this moment that every minute before Christmas counts so probably won't go back til after that.

Now, tucked in between my commissions (2 of which I got as a result of twitter), I'm hoping to do small and mini acrylic paintings..for two reasons. I think they may sell on ebay and then be a nice promo for me AND I want to paint better. I am hoping to be able to paint reliably. In other words, I've done some paintings that turned out great. Then, I did some that turned out horrible. I don't know enough to KNOW what to do, like I do with the colored pencils. I almost don't have to think to know what color to do next. I want to get to that in painting so I can be more creative and not thinking so hard on the technical end.

I am worried about after Christmas, of course. So I am continuing to market like a crazy person. Next post I'll talk about how I'm tracking what works by using google analytics on my pet portrait site: http://robinzebley.com.

Right now, though, I am TRYING lots of things and time will tell what is worth it and what is a waste of time and resources. Some worked successfully for me 3 years ago before I took that horrid day job, some are brand new:

1. Twitter
2. Printing and placing business cards and flyers all over town.
3. Mailing flyers to out of town vets who request via twitter.
4. Printing and distributing bookmarks with my dog portraits on them along with dog quotes and just my website at the bottom with "The Dog Portrait Art of Robin Zebley". I have made and sent out thousands to rescue and retail dog events.
5. Craigslist.
6. A newsletter to former customers.
7. Chatting in the etsy forum.

Craigslist used to work for me. Now, the Flaggers remove anything in the pets forum that isn't related to a rescue. None of the other categories has brought me any inquiries so I think that resource is beat and not worth it.

I am thinking of doing google ads.

Mostly, though, what is important is to produce. I can't work more than 2 hours straight without getting sloppy and unable to "see", if you know what I mean. So I've tweaked my daily routine. More on that in another post, but for now, fellow artists, I hope you're also doing more art! Art is in the air, and it's a beautiful thing! Robin


Susan Beth Studio said...

Hi Robin,

Wow, you get an early start! I've always wanted to be a morning person (sigh). October was insane with family events and home projects, so I'm now trying to catch up on my own work as well as with blogs. It sounds like you've got GREAT marketing ideas, I'm sure some will pay off despite the economy.

Good luck with your acrylic painting. You have a great sense of color and light, so it probably won't be long until you feel as comfortable as you do with the colored pencils. Acrylic was actually my first love before colored pencils. Besides some paintings I also did furniture and murals. It is such a forgiving, versatile medium, especially for those of us who can't seem to use the traditional oil paint - everything I've tried in oil always turned out like mud!

Well, I'd better post something on my blog now, then get some more drawing done!

Best of luck!

Robin said...

Susan Beth, I get a lot more done if I do it in the morning!

Thanks for your good wishes. It means so much to know other artists are pulling for me!!