The vast majority of creatives that I talk to start out the conversation with "I've been thinking of creating an art book...." While art books are a common subject to talk about, there is a ton of bad information out there about creating your art book. Most of it comes from Print on Demand companies that want to convince you that creating an art book is as easy as uploading a bunch of images and hitting print. While it is true that you can create an art book in that manner, it isn't exactly the best solution for the majority of the professional artists that I work with and who want to create books that are more than just a collection of pretty images. To be really effective with the creation of your art book, you have to know a few things...
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Time to tattle on myself...
The very first project I ever took overseas for development lost a ton of money. Not because the product was flawed. Not because I didn't market it well. Nope, it lost money because I didn't understand a simple three-digit acronym that made the world of difference for the profitability of my project. You see, I got a quote back for development that made mention of "Price Term: FOB". Without a clear understanding of that term, I later had to eat huge costs overruns in shipping, duties, taxes, customs costs, and more. How can you avoid this mistake yourself? All you have to do is know what all of those shipping terms mean and how they might affect your bottom line, and the transfer of ownership of the product you are bringing in country.
As I’ve been fine-tuning the new business of ArtOrder, I’ve been having tons of conversations with artists about what it means to be a creative entrepreneur. By definition, a creative entrepreneur is someone that sets up a business, or is self employed, in one of the creative industries. The focus of a creative entrepreneur differs from that of the typical entrepreneur in that they are first and foremost concerned with the creation and exploration of creative or intellectual capital. If that definition baffles you, then just consider it in it’s simplest terms - you use talent to create and sell a product.
But what about that phrase “exploit”. Often the term leaves a nasty taste in most of our mouths, but that shouldn’t be the case. “Exploit” really just means to make full use of, or derive the most benefit from a resource. The majority of the artist I have been working with tend to think of what they do in a one-to-one transaction model. I create a piece of art work, and I sell the rights for that art work to a client. While this is a fine business model, if we look at the concept of “exploiting” our creativity, we can start having conversations about maximizing our income from a given creative “asset”.
Let’s talk about six ways to exploit your creativity…