I like to be open and share my experiences and things I am working on with everyone so they can get a sense of what an artist has to do. While many big ones out there have people who can do all the small details and technical affairs for them, small artists generally do it ALL! There is social media posts, websites (if the choose to open one), files, quality control, back ups and software updates, materials for finished projects, packing, shipping, advertising, it goes on. It can be overwhelming and exhausting at times if you're wanting to make something of this. It takes a level of commitment and drive to do it. I would love to say that all I have to do is make art and poof it all just magically happens, but it doesn't. That's why I am such a strong advocate for people to pay artists and creators their worth. Nothing is more disappointing or disheartening then having someone want to get work for you and then later say they cant believe you charge so much for "just a drawing" The arts are crucial in our society as a whole. They express things in ways like no other. It saddens me to see the art world taking a hit in many ways right now with schools and other programs being directly effected by budget cuts and other agendas. The misconception that a person is "born with a talent" is part of the problem I think some cases because no one really is just a natural artist. Yes, there are some it can come easier to learn something easier than another say learned talent, but being a serious artist takes years and lots of mistakes and remaking and reshaping these skills. Appreciate the artist you love. You can show support for them in many ways, if you cant afford their services, but want to eventually own something of theirs, save up and pay for the years of experience, tears, frustrating and lots of money ( art is not cheap). In the mean time while you save up, you can share their content on social media, word of mouth and expressing excitement all around! We love hearing from out followers/fans! This lets us know the efforts are all worth it! Okay! now that I've gone off on that side track, let talk about on to whats been going on!
So over the past month I decided to make some changes. I wanted to have a better platform that looked and felt more enticing then one I had used before for monthly subscriptions. I was using Patreon, while it is a good platform for more popular and thriving businesses, the benefits didn't really out weigh the overall costs for an artist growing. I find going the route of my website and creating a platform that's specifically me just felt right. I want to have so many other things to offer that can be more interactive and dynamic in comparison. Patreon is "cut and dry" as one of my followers has mentioned and has said my website is more appealing, this makes the effort worth it to me. While I have a background of graphic design and some web, man there is a lot that goes into making sure everything works smoothly and without glitches or snags in the transactions as clients move throughout the website. Making sure every detail looks and feels a sense of continuity and works properly. Nothing is more frustrating then going onto a website and its doesn't even work well. I like that I can add different "apps" into my website that allow me to give different features, such as, downloadable content. When I get in a creative rut there are things I like to work on that don't really take much thought or inspiration to keep creating. Those can include working on coloring pages and currently I decided to play around with making animations and turning them into GIFs. It is also a big of time consumed in finding the right programs and applications that suit the needs you wants to accomplish and that doesn't break the bank or makes sense in budgeting. I have had a hang up with a feature on my store. I currently have a credit card processing through Stripe, while that isn't ideally what i wanted to use, there are some things I have to fix/adjust to make the PayPal option available via the website. It's nothing to do with the company itself or how it works with the website, it entirely is with unfortunately a ex husband who still hasn't quite decided to move on after 12 years. Having your information used to open cards and account to the point of having to lock everything up credit wise and also alternative financial holding means is more complicated with a stalker. So that is a hurdle I will have to work with and should be cleared up soon with come precautions put in place. I have made shifts in closing other places I was selling at as well. Etsy was another shop I used for a time, but like other things like FB, for example, they are pushing you to pay for advertising and ways to be "seen". Their algorithms make small businesses have a tougher time getting information out to their people and potential new clients. Plus Etsy was charging me triple the fees for a few months until finally I got a hold of someone to fix this issue. Side note, if you send and email to them, I literally never got a response from them. I only reached someone when my banking info listed their contact information for me. For me that can be a big turn off for me to wanting to keep or delete and account, poor customer service.
So whats next? Well I am hoping to be able to make it easier and more appealing for my clients to download and access things through their subscriptions. I want to make fun things like animated downloads here and there for the fun of it. I am still working on the big Egyptian tarot deck. That is a mighty big one so I try to keep things interesting by doing other side ideas in between to keeps things lively. I will soon also be able to do live videos directly to my website as well. I am making efforts to try and keep up on my blogging as well so you all can get some inside it all information and always feel free to interact and comment on them as well. As long as you sign up as a meme can interact with me on the posts. I enjoy hearing from my peoples! It wouldnt be a bad thing to know what you'd like to see as well for things going forward. I have a canvas on my desk right now too. It has been a bit since I have done an actual canvas panting. For a while now its been illustrations and so forth either on cold press watercolor paper or, as of recent, digitally. I have ideas swooshing around, but sometimes getting them out and actually into a visual form can be difficult. Currently having a bit of a block, but hopefully with the stuff out on my desk maybe one night it will just pop into me and I will just paint. I really have gotten to love doing lore works and I have done a Kitsune painting that sold pretty quickly in the past. I am planning on making another version of Kitsune again. It will be glorious lol!
Alright, I think that is enough rambling from me for now, but I wanted to keep everyone in the loop of things. As always I appreciate the ongoing support and love you all have given in this journey I started in 2014, when I officially opened up shop.