[PDS] Selling your Work - Mike Ballard


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UAL alumni Mike Ballard speaks about his experiences of selling at his degree show and subsequent shows, how he approaches selling and his tips about selling for student and graduates

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  • The majority of work that I sell is through my websites and is print based, to people all over the world, through magazine articles about my work and through word of mouth. I also sell quite a lot of video pieces and have progressed my prices from £400 a piece to £1000 a piece (Editions of 3) since 2007.
  • Installations where the main piece is not for sale, think about prints and catalogues. If the show is an experience, then people will want some kind of souvenir, I.e a print of some form of documentation.
  • Made sales through Eamon Maxwell and Medeia Cohen, who runs the collectors exchange. Collector visited my show and wanted to buy both video pieces. Collectors talk to each other and so word spread and other collectors bought other pieces.
  • [PDS] Selling your Work - Mike Ballard

    1. 1. Mike Ballard Selling work at your degree show and Life after art school
    2. 2. Art is not about making money.
    3. 12. No one likes to mention selling work and money whilst at college, coz it’s not about that, is it?
    4. 13. But unless you’re happy working in a chip shop or art is just a hobby for you, then <ul><li>You will want to sell your art to survive, </li></ul><ul><li>To be able to make more work </li></ul><ul><li>To progress your career </li></ul><ul><li>For galleries to be interested in you. </li></ul>
    5. 14. The degree show
    6. 15. Nothing else matters during this time, give it all you have. Don’t let anything distract you,
    7. 16. Every body likes free drink so, Have your own booze and soft drinks in your space. (DO NOT GET HIGH OFF YOUR OWN SUPPLY..STAY SOBER!!!)
    8. 17. Make your space the place to be
    9. 18. Loads of serious collectors visit degree shows. (Rarely on the opening night) Try and be there as much as possible to meet them and talk about your work. <ul><li>Make sure you have plenty of postcards/cards with your details on </li></ul><ul><li>Have a website where people can see all your work </li></ul><ul><li>Most art collectors are very interesting people, and down to earth, they like to get to know you as well as your work. </li></ul><ul><li>Be yourself, don’t go all wobbly. </li></ul><ul><li>Be prepared to negotiate if they want to buy more than one piece </li></ul><ul><li>Price your work according to time and materials. </li></ul><ul><li>Do not under value your work or over price it.Ask your tutors to help price your work, they have experience of what students have sold before </li></ul><ul><li>Can you make an edition of your work: prints, video? </li></ul><ul><li>UAL runs a Collectors Exchange </li></ul><ul><li>Where collectors will be brought around on the day of the opening and the days2 after. </li></ul>
    10. 19. Selling video pieces <ul><li>Think about packaging. </li></ul><ul><li>Make it special and unique </li></ul><ul><li>Certificates of authenticity </li></ul><ul><li>Master and exhibition copies </li></ul><ul><li>Video stills </li></ul>
    11. 20. After the degree show. Don’t panic if you didn’t sell or get with a gallery straight away.
    12. 21. If a gallery approaches you, do some research, speak to other artists who already work with them. Do not sign any contracts with anyone without seeking some legal advice. Most galleries work on a trusting relationship. Stay true to what you make and are about, just coz you sold a green painting, don’t just make green paintings from now on. Now is the time to really develop your work and focus on the future. Go to galleries you’d like to work with and try to get to know the curators and how the gallery operates.
    13. 22. Relax for a minute
    14. 23. Then, focus
    15. 24. Keep making work and organising your own shows.
    16. 25. If you are going full time as an artist. You will need to go and register at the job centre as self employed, which is a great laugh. Fill out the necessary forms, then go back to your studio and work.
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