To be a successful artist, you must properly market your artwork in a variety of venues, and your success ultimately rests upon your artistic ability and drive. Because the art world is competitive, only those actively marketing their art in the right places and in the proper manner are able to consistently turn a profit.
1) Make a portfolio. Every serious artist should keep a portfolio of his or her work. A portfolio illustrates your painting style and your body of work. Inside the portfolio, keep professional-quality photographic representations of all your oil paintings, including the ones you have already sold. The portfolio serves as an artist's showroom and resume. Also, be sure to have a digital version of your portfolio, making it easier to market your paintings on-line.
2) Paint on location. Choose an area with a high level of foot traffic, and set up your easel, canvas and palette in that location. Pick a subject to paint that is in your vicinity. As passers-by look on, they can gauge your talents by how well your painting represents the subject. Painting on location also gives you the opportunity to answer the questions of those interested in purchasing your artwork. Be sure to keep a few finished paintings nearby, as well as business cards to hand out to those interested in your work.