Marina Press Granger is the founder of The Artist Advisory. She is an accomplished artist coach, art advisor, former curator, gallerist, writer, speaker and podcaster who has over 15 years’ experience working in the New York art world. Granger specializes in helping artists put their work online, to reach the right audience, selling their work online, and most importantly, taking the necessary action to succeed towards making their goals and dreams come true.
After artists have studied at Granger’s Academy, they have gone onto win prestigious awards, set up successful studio practices, sold their artwork successfully online, and have grown their online following into a meaningful community.
Since starting her journey in the art world in 2003, she became a gallery director, a museum employee, an art publications manager of a distinguished bookstore and an art advisor. Her work has brought her in close contact with a plethora of players in the art world; artists, collectors, curators, dealers, critics and consultants. In all the knowledge she has accumulated over the past 15 years, that she wishes to share with artists. She calls herself “the guidance counsellor of the art world,” and helps artists with a road map of their careers. Imagine her like a flash light on your path, and you get the idea.
She helps artists grow their careers, promote their work online, develop sales and learn how to tap into the greater cultural conversation. She talks from her home in Manhattan about selling art online and the art of optimism.
What is the key to selling your own art online?
Marina Press Granger: Know what it feels like to live with your art, not hanging over a couch but installation view on white wall, show texture in work, creating a video tour of a sculpture so people can really see the details under different lights. When I work with clients, we work together on how to show their work online, whether it’s a video of an art studio in progress paintings on a website, to show the scale of how big a piece is, for example.
How do you help, in that respect?
I teach artists how to feel comfortable talking about their work, even if you don’t feel comfortable talking about your work, you can explain a perspective of how we could look at your work – why you make what you make, what interests you, the reader will create a personal connection with it. Always use social media as a funnel for your work. Often times, when you sell something, boast about it on social media. Don’t say the price but show us you sold something by getting it framed, or on the wall in its new home.
How are the most successful artists promoting themselves online?
The ones that make it easy to contact them. And collecting emails with a pop up ‘join my newsletter’ post for everyone who visits your website, who could be potential buyers. By offering a monthly newsletter with a private link to a product page to buy works of art, an artist might easily make a sale this way. I also suggest that artists focus on building relationships with potential collectors, and make it easy for them to buy your work, making it clear as to what’s available, what material, texture and size it is, and sharing on social media, “I just finished this painting,” for example.
How are you feeding a niche that has been overlooked?
The traditional gatekeepers in the art world are no longer holding the gates closed because of the internet. The internet burst those gates wide open for anyone and everyone in the art world to be in touch with any artist. I am helping artists with guidance on how to initiate and respond to these connections and how and who to build relationships with. Essentially, I am like an unbiased guidance counselor for the artist helping them get into the art world of their choice.
What can artists do to make money from home under quarantine?
Figure out what your intention is, why you make it and why it fits into global conversation. You also have to get over self-imposed obstacles you have created for yourself, the top obstacle for artists is that they feel they’re going to be a starving artist. but you don’t have to be Jeff Koons to make a decent living – there are artists who do. There are many ways to make money, but you can’t make money if you can’t think you can. You don’t even need a gallery, but you could have one, and you don’t have to sell paintings off your website but could. Artists can be doing book covers, murals, illustrations for publications. As long as you value yourself and the work you do.
How can visual artists make money through Instagram?
Be clear about what your artwork is when presenting it online, it’s 100% about understanding who you want to look at your work. You can have a Shopify website to make your online sales seamless, and list all your artworks as products on your website. On social media, artists need to convey whatever their intention is of why they make their artwork, to say that in every social media post, say that everywhere, put it in your Instagram bio. People will buy or share your work.
What is the secret sauce here?
Community follows into every single step, it’s so important to articulate your intention, mindset and growing your community online. My students and I go through the Marina Method, my three-step program, then decide how to reach out to people. You don’t want to connect with people in a transactional way, but authentically. I build these career roadmaps for artists, They’re based on their community and growing it. Its key to be clear about one’s intention, what it is they want.