Artist Entrepreneur Series

Grow Your Artistic Business

The Artist Entrepreneur Series is provided thanks to the Artisans Center of Virginia, Blue Ridge Community College and the Shenandoah Valley Small Business Development Center.  You can choose among the different offerings, or register for the entire series.  Each workshop is led by a local expert on the subject and is taught with the artist in mind.  Artist Entrepreneur courses are open to artists from all walks of the creative arts (visual, functional, performance, etc), not just craft!  If you are an artist seeking to develop or expand your entrepreneurial efforts, these courses are designed for maximum enjoyment and success!

The series is offered during Fall and Spring semesters.  Below are examples of current and past seminars.  Please see our calendar for the most up to date offerings.

E-Commerce Made Easy

Set up your online store, connect it to your bank, and take your business on the road.  It won't cost you an arm and a leg - and you'll be set up in minutes.  Learn how to use systems such as Google, Paypal and the Square to set up an e-commerce and fulfillment system that won't break the bank and has the added plus of going everywhere you go.

Reaching Everyone

Learn to create a connected system for your business and outreach endeavors.  Use "widgets" that can connect your calendar to your website while sending updates to your Facebook and Twitter accounts.  Showcase your art easily online by using open software programs like WordPress, Google Aps, Facebook, Twitter, and other user-friendly website connective systems to keep your online presence strong.

 Social Media

Facebook, Twitter and other types of social media are the best ways to get the word out fast.  Jay Punyanitya will show you how to draw people into your world and keep them interested.  Connect with other artisits and potential customers to create long-lasting relationships so your business can grow.  Learn the dos and don'ts of each platform, so your business can get more "likes" and have more "followers."

So What Makes You So Special?

The most important step when developing your business is to define your "Unique Value Proposition."  Your UVP is a clear statement that communicates the unique contributions you will make to your customers that are different from those of your competitors.  Learn the building blocks for organizing key elements into the foundational statement that will inform your artist business plan and drive your marketing.

Photographing Your Art

Having trouble getting photographs of your work for a website or to submit to a show? Are you tired of digital photos that make your creations look dull - or the wrong color? Photographer Mark Miller examines background choices, light sources, camera and lens selection and expo-sure. Learn how to capture sharper images and more realistic colors.

Blogging Made Easy

A large part of a potential customer’s interest in buying a piece of art is about the artist, the how and why an artist creates. Blogging allows you to tell your story, track the progress of your work and your skill and interact with a customer you might never meet face-to-face. Learn the mechanics and reasons for blogging. Learn how to tie your blog to your website and your other social media sites.

Have You Thought it Through?

This seminar covers basic components to consider when contemplating an artistic business endeavor. You have the talent; you will also need a business owner’s mindset. What is your unique selling proposition? Who are your competitors? Learn how to grow your business while preserving your artistic creativity!

Etsy, Etc.

Marketing your craft online requires that consumers can immediately see your art. Etsy and Pinterest are two of the most popular visual venues, offering the ability to upload and display photos of work in a virtual storefront. Learn how to set up and maintain your virtual sales boards while marketing to the visually-motivated consumer.

Art for Sale!  Working with Vendors

Have you thought about your art from the retailer’s perspective? Learn why pricing, commission, competition, seasonal considerations, proximity, time management, co-branding, marketing, and inventory/point of sale restrictions are so important to your bottom line.

Registration is managed through Blue Ridge Community College

Have a topic you'd like to see offered?  Let us know!