The Artlet Network
Marc Taro Holmes
I've been lucky enough to make this passion into a career - teaching workshops, teaching online, and writing books. My most successful book so far is The Urban Sketcher: Techniques for Seeing and Drawing on Location.
I took a long slow path to where I am today. I graduated in 1995 from an illustration and design course and worked in video game design for many years. I was always blogging. Initially, I was more focused on figure drawing and character design but gradually my passion for drawing on location, out in the real world, just took over. Moving from blogging into books and teaching was a fairly natural thing.
I was in a very successful group blog, made up of like-minded artists, that went viral. And I'm obsessed with art, so I put out a lot of content. It's been very inspirational, very popular, and consequently, it's helped spread the word about a number of artists in the group. - myself included. I don't believe in self-promotion at all really, but I do believe in sharing. All I try to worry about is learning how to make art. And I learn best by doing! I just blog about what I'm working on, and I'm very happy that other people happen to be interested in the same things.
None of it was ever done as 'self-promotion' - because I was never selling something. I have never been interested in selling art. I don't think people should buy art. They should make it. So, I just had a hobby -until, by accident, I was selling. Suddenly I have a book and classes - and sure, I do a fair amount of talking about them.
I draw nearly every day, and, like any artist, I'm always trying to get better. So, when you do something with a focus like that, you're never short of ideas. Ideas just appear, and they go into lists of Posts I Should Write. Also - teaching is a great way to learn. You have to figure out how things are done in order to explain them. Running an online class is a constant idea generator. I've only done it for two years and I've got around eight thousand students and counting.
I'm not sure if I'm qualified to give advice. People just need to do what interests them and do it with passion. You only get one life, so - choose what you want to do and don't do anything else. Simple, right? I mean, everything anyone says boils down to that. Be relentless about pleasing yourself and if you're a good person, you'll end up pleasing a lot of other people too.
If you're curious what I'm up to - it's all on CitizenSketcher.com!
In the fashion industry, if you want to run your own brand and business behind it - you need to understand both your customer and your own needs. You can't create things that won't sell, yet we can't be followers, make the current trends your own, and create your vision from there.
a) Use creative names for your products, this will differentiate and leave a memorable impression when trying to establish yourself.
b) The use of social media influencers and the digital platform has no doubt been one of the biggest avenues of exposure - but you should definitely do some research before you pick a social influencer to use, as some may be too good at marketing themselves and your product gets lost in translation which may result in a failed return on marketing investment.
c) Social Media has been a huge platform for exposure in our generation - but don't forget the good old school ways where word-of-mouth and who you know will take you much further in this competitive industry. Surround yourself with people who want you to succeed and are there to promote YOU, money can't buy the genuine desire from your peers to want and help you succeed. Be a people's person! My networks have definitely helped me most with speeding up the process in advancing to where I need to be!
I personally love connecting with people on a personal level. If you are on friendly/good terms with everyone you are working with, opportunities will arise by themselves and no single day will really feel like actual work.
I use Social Media to find new talent to collaborate with, such as music producers, photographers, other artists etc. Make sure your profile looks professional, attractive and endearing to the public. Don't portray yourself in a way you do not want to be perceived, and if you meet someone who is more successful than you are, always ask them for constructive advice. Always update yourself about the industry and keep learning more every day to improve your craft.
Another thing that has really worked for me is going out (clubbing/to events) in different cities. For me, the focus is never on the event itself, but on meeting creative people who I could possibly collaborate with in the future.
As a filmmaker, my goal is to make stories come alive. How the audience receives the film is just as important as telling the story. If things don't work, you have to change it up. Pride cannot stop you from achieving what you ultimately need but at the same time, you need to keep to your vision as much as possible. Where you compromise is sometimes where the adventure really goes.
When trying to crowdfund your film, the best way I've found to increase my visibility to others was just by indirectly talking about it. Only when interest is shown would I go into more details. Remember, people don't like being sold to, but they LOVE stories. See links for film trailer!