Lilla loves questions, and she was asked a great deal of them in Make Art That Sells, so we thought we’d share a few with you. Over the next few Fridays we will be posting a few real questions from students, along with Lilla’s responses. We hope these are helpful as you develop your own work. This week we are focusing on style.
Q) Do you know any successful artists who have more than one distinctive style? How do they present their work on their website?
A) If the reality is that you have a few styles, then by all means show them. The world is your personal focus group. The market will come to you for the work thatâ€™s marketable. But if you believe in a style, donâ€™t give up on it even if it takes longer to get results. Hereâ€™s the deal: Over time, your various styles will probably merge into one even stronger style. Iâ€™ve seen this happen time and time again. Keep making art.
Q) For bolt fabric, do â€˜simple/modernâ€™ designs work â€“ or is it great only when marketed under a brand (like Orla Kiely) who stand for that kind of lifestyle and have the power of their brand behind them?
A) This is a very important question. Remember that most companies have in-house designers.Â So they wonâ€™t come to you and pay $500 â€“ $1,000 or more for a piece of art, or royalties, for work that they can do themselves.Â This is why I encourage you to do pieces that have a lot going on, and even possibly paint on the art. Simple has its place, but the more you can offer a client, the more enticing your piece will be.
Q) Do you have any advice on how best to know where your style fits? Would having an agent be the best way to find the right audience?
A) Getting an agent is like getting a client. A good agent is difficult to get. Make Art That Sells (in my humble opinion) is a terrific way to see what styles are commercial. Also, it gives you some of the best subject matter for each market according to what I see licensed in the marketplace, since itâ€™s what I do for a living. Thatâ€™s one way. If you are looking at lots of products that are currently being produced in the market you like, then you are getting a flavor for what I call the cultural visual conversation. Then, you put your spin on it.
Q) If you want a long career, how do you balance developing a distinctive style with staying fresh?
A:Â I am all about career longevity for artists. I have seen careers come and go over the decades. Why do some artists’ careers last? Simple answer: they stay inspired and take risks. They don’t get stuck in a rut. They push, they try, they explore. So that might mean being creative in all kinds of ways.Â
A:Â Short answer: The more art you do, the more your style emerges. Fact. Your style actually grows and evolves over time as your tastes change. Looking at art and the world informs your work. Pushing yourself to try new things and to work in different media grow your style as they add more tools to your tool kit. So learning is key.
If you want the chance to ask Lilla your own burning questions, sign up for Make Art That Sells (starting online on October 7). This is an industry first – a real opportunity to learn how to make great art that sells in the top ten hottest markets. Don’t miss it!
We’ll be back next week with ‘Q&A Friday with Lilla: On life as an artist’
PLUS: WIN A 1-1 PORTFOLIO REVIEW & CAREER CONSULTATION WITH LILLA!
Have you ever dreamt of having a portfolio and career consultation with a top art agent? Well this is your chance! For the first time ever Lilla Rogers is offering a private one hour portfolio review and career consultation (via Skype) to TWO lucky artists.
This is a rare, incredible opportunity to tap into three decadesâ€™ of experience from someone at the forefront of the art licensing industry. Lilla Rogers Studio has sold art for products worth over $100 million. Lilla knows what is hot, what is on the horizon and where your work fits in.Â Find out more here!