How to Support an Artist *FOR FREE*
I LOVE THIS illustration by Isadora Zeferino so I am using it here.
This blog post will be ALL about the latter part of this illustration though.
First of all, I think it's extremely important to say, I feel SO SUPPORTED by ALL OF YOU. Seriously, there may not be many of you out there following along with me and this artistic life, but those of you who do, YOU are SOLID and this means SO MUCH to me.
But, I was thinking...maybe, there is a chance there is one (or even two?) of you out there who don't know what actions are most helpful while being an artist advocate.
Times have (obviously) changed a lot. In the beginning of my painting career, social media didn't even exist and now, over the course of fifteen years, it has become front and center. Many people curse the social media world, but for some of us, we rely on these avenues heavily.
So, if you are on social media (primarily facebook or instagram), here are a few ways to support your favorite artist:
Comment on their posts. Don't force it though. But if something moves you, by all means, DO TELL! Three word comments are all we need.
*But then, there is THIS* What about all those alerts I don't want to receive because others are leaving comments too?
On facebook, if you comment on a post, all of the sudden your facebook account goes crazy with alerts if others leave comments on the same post. There is an easy remedy for this that some may not know about. To stop this, once there is an additional comment, and you have been alerted, just right of the alert, there are three dots. Click there and choose the option to "Turn off notifications for this post".
ALL Done. Forever. No more alerts for you. AND, you have REALLY assisted an artist in getting their work out there with this effort. Comments have so much more value in our world of social media.
Share their art. WHAT? Can I really do that? Isn't that stealing?
NOPE. Not if you reference the artist. The repost app (for instagram) is an easy way to do this. If you (here we go with the three dots thing again) click on the three dots and choose "copy link", and then leave instagram and open the repost app, you will see that the post you have copied is there. Choose this post and it will do everything else for you. Hit the big blue button at the bottom titled "Repost", choose "open instagram" and then you are one arrow, one "next" and one "share" away from this post being a part of your feed.
One tip about sharing a post on facebook: unless you copy and paste the words that coincide with an image, usually only the image is shared. This has a tendency to look like an accidental post or maybe even "spam". People don't tend to give these posts much attention.
If you're passionate about their work, talk about it. You do NOT need to be an art expert to share what you love and appreciate. And you do NOT need to know ANYTHING else about the art or the artist. When people personally hear about another's work, it sticks. And, really, it's a small world when everything is said and done. All of the sudden you have created another bridge for the artist in the baffling maze of this beautiful, ever growing art world.
I have had people who are visiting a gallery, ask the gallery attendant or owner if they have heard of my work. I have even had someone pull up my instagram account (a few years ago, it was my website but now these are almost becoming obsolete).
If you at a dinner party with friends, art is a great topic. If you see art on exhibit in a cafe and think the artist's work would be a good fit, pass this along - to someone. Contact the artist herself!
View their work in person. Heard of your favorite artist having an exhibit somewhere? Schedule an artist date with yourself or with another to go and view the work in person. Don't live locally? If you know someone who does, pass on the exhibit information. Ask the artist herself to put something together if need be (for you to share). Trust me, she'd be thrilled.
And then want to really rattle your favorite artist's world? If you see her work in person, take a photo, mention her handle in your caption. Make sure to add the location of your visit. And then, guess what? There's a good chance the artist will repost your post. See, it really is just an unending circle.
How do you support your favorite artists?
Artists, what other ways do you feel supported?