Supporting Local Artists: A How to Guide
Updated: Sep 15, 2020
Buying art always feels exciting (like bringing home a new addition to the family), and supporting a local artist is even more so. But it can be daunting, and many don’t have the extra finances to purchase lots of art to support the creators that they love. What you may not realize is that supporting a local artist can be more than just buying art. To help you, up-lift local artists, I have compiled a list of extremely accessible things that anyone can do!
1. Follow them on social media!
The first thing you can do to show an artist that you are interested in their craft is to follow them. Most artists have some type of social media where they showcase products or projects that are being worked on, following them will let you keep up with their work. Fill your Instagram with local artists, and don’t forget to diversify your feed with creators from different ethnic groups, gender identities, and mediums! Kaleidoscope has an on-going list of local Guelph artists that will be, or have been, featured. You can check it out here.
2. Share their art on your social media!
Did your favourite artist just post a beautiful image of a clay-fired fruit bowl for sale? Share it on your Story! Did a cool artist just post progress pictures of a huge project they are working on? Share it on your story with a little “So excited!” caption. This not only shows the artist that you are loving the work that they do, but it can draw in new followers and one of those new followers may buy that beautiful fruit bowl.
3. Engage with posts!
Commenting on posts, liking, and participating in giveaways and charity events will increase engagement and can help the artist to show up on another user’s recommendation page. So, tell the artist why you love their post, leave some heart eye emojis, tag your mom, whatever makes you happy! Just keep it positive!
4. Buying local art is not always expensive!
I know I said that you don’t have to buy art, and I mean it. Being supportive on social media can make a huge difference for a local creator, and maybe one day you will have that extra money to treat yourself. But there are times when you could be buying local art when you probably don’t. All your friends have birthdays, and you probably get them something, why not get them a nice art print from a local artist? Christmas? Hanukkah? Eid? That $12 “get well soon” card you bought? Replace traditional gifts with creative and unique art pieces, and if you have the means, consider making it a commission and customize the gift for your friend.
It’s very important that when you are buying art, do not try and negotiate for a lower price. Your artist has put in so much time, emotion, and skill into the piece and they deserve to be compensated. The price they give you is the price you pay. Many creators undercharge for their work, so if the price seems like a steal, show them that you value their craft and consider tipping.
Once you have your beautiful piece of art, show your friends and family, direct everyone to the artist's page, and continue to share and support them after your purchase.
So, follow more local artists! Loudly share beautiful art with your friends! And, show artists that you care about their success and try your best to support them!
Written by: Amy Hanstke