Popular Section: Information

The #1 Sneaky Lie That Attracts Overwhelm (and what to do about it…)

About a month ago, I held a very special “Artists Only Spa Day” with the maven of Creative-Clarity-Wins-Over-Chaos, Jennifer Hofmann of Inspired Home Office.

I think we were both a bit stunned when over 50 artists signed up. Yikes! Chaos on the loose in studio after studio…

And now that Fall has fallen into all of our laps, I thought this a perfect time to use the crisp autumn energy to open up a path of clarity through all the overwhelm – real or mythical – with a guest post from Jennifer herself.

The #1 Sneaky Lie That Attracts Overwhelm (and what to do about it…)

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5 Ways To Combat Toxic Art Supplies

Being responsible stewards of our lovely blue-green planet isn’t a luxury anymore.

It is quite simply a question of the survival of our human race. Sea levels are rising, entire forests are being destroyed by small insects thriving in the rising temperatures, creatures who ensure the integrity of our entire eco systems are dying out (think: bees).

Thankfully, we don’t have to simply wring our hands. We can…

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5 Things No One Told You About Copyrights

I was amazed to find the lawyer who practically invented the concept of Art Law, Attorney Leonard DuBoff. Besides his 15 books on Law in Plain English, his Oregon firm specializes in artists.

You can imagine how happy I was to have him come to the smARTist Telesummit to explain the ins and outs of copyrights in his presentation Art Law: What Artists Must Know About Copyright.

Here are 5 surprises about copyrights that came out of his presentation:

1. If you are living outside the USA, there are 3 multinational treaties that govern 135 countries. To find out if your county is one of them…  …go to> http://www.copyright.gov/

  • The Berne Convention provides reciprocal rights, and “moral” rights, for copyright owners in all member nations.
  • The Universal Copyright Convention (UCC) protects copyrights using this international symbol © for member nations.
  • The Buenos Aires Convention (North & South Americas) protects copyrights using this symbol ©, plus adding the legend, “All Rights Reserved.”

2. Yes, we have the standard, automatic copyright protection. But did you know that you also have to also affixed the symbol ©, your name, and date first made public to all work you plan to sell if you want to be covered under all possible circumstances?

I know, there’s controversy over dating work, but it’s important to weigh this against copyright considerations. One idea is to put this information on the back of paintings, or under the base of sculpture – where it isn’t easily seen and so not likely to affect a sale.

3. Besides the copyright symbol, registering your work means you can get back either your attorney’s fees or “statutory damages (up to $150,000) if you ever have to go to court because someone is stealing your work.

4. Copyright infringement has a 3-year statute of limitations. So pay attention! Goggle your name, titles of your work, anything that might come up as “you” on a regular basis.

5. Garment design, wearable art (think clothes and jewelry), and functional art cannot be copyrighted directly. You can, however, work around the limitations to some degree, like registering the fabric design even when you can’t register the pattern of the garment.


P.S. Attorney DuBoff goes into more details about how to copyright, how to register, why a trademark is a good idea… and so much more. I’ve put together a cool new smARTist Exclusive bundle where you can get this and 2 more bona fide experts to help you Protect Your Art. Protect Your Income. And Protect Your Health.


You Can Keep More of Your Money

A subject dear to all our hearts: keeping the money we work so hard to earn.

Thank goodness I discovered Peter Jason Riley, a certified public accountant who has spent his career fine-tuning the best tax strategies ever for artists.

Here are 7 pointers from his presentation – Watch Your Wallet! Strategic Tax Planning for the Visual Artist that I want to make sure you know about:

1. You have 3 choices for how your business is structured…

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Stumbling Around In The Dark

One reason I know so darn much about running a business as a solopreneur is I’ve been doing it for over 20 years.

And what amazes me, what never changes, is that the learning curve is always ahead of me. I used to think there was a catch-up point, and I’d race for it. Took a while for me to notice that each time I got close, the curve simply…

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Why Social Media Makes Me Crazy

When I first heard the words “social media,” I had 3 years of the smARTist Telesummit under my belt, had sold thousands of copies of my Writing The Artist Statement book, and coached dozens of private artist clients.

I barely had time to brush my teeth, much less prance around a “social” site with old high school classmates-who never gave me the time of day, way-back-when, in the first place.

I admit to a glop of self-righteousness:  I (oh, no, not I) wasn’t going to fall for this latest Internet hula hoop. I was going to stay focused on the business of serving artists. (See me, with my nose in the air?)

Then, marketing guru Adam Urbanski held a series of…

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I Am An Artist – Really?

Years ago I became aware of how many times, upon meeting me for the first time, someone would ask, “Are you an artist?”

Now, let me be clear. I don’t flaunt orange hair and nose piercings. I don’t even wear flamboyant, artsy clothes. (Pretty, yes. Sometimes beautiful, yes. Just not what I would call “artsy,” which conjures up, in my mind, gorgeous handmade yummies.) And I certainly don’t turn up in torn jeans with paint all over them.

Nevertheless, that question – Are you an artist? – seems to travel everywhere I do. And it always makes me…

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On The Road Again

Hawaii the First Time

Hawaii the First Time

This has been a shake-up, wake-up year for me, your normally stay-at-home-in-my-Internet-Ivory-Tower kinda gal. Oh, sure, I might wander up to Maine, or down to New York City – once in a while. But 4 trips in 4 months that all started with getting on a plane?

In the first place, I’m an introvert – which means I’m pretty darn happy toddling around in my own space, frolicking with the fairies and elves of my endless Idea Machine. It’s why I prefer being online and on the phone to, say, a keynote address where my body is in front of a bunch of other bodies – being alone keeps the external stimulation to a minimum so I can access, and cough up ideas like the smARTist Telesummit, or write books like Writing The Artist Statement.

However, something dramatically changed at…

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The Black Trance

NOTE: This post, for those of you keeping up, is a re-post from last year. Why? Because, the problem isn’t going away and I’m the drumbeat in the lost artist jungle….


Artists love black. Love, love, love it. It has class. It engages. It draws you in.

Black is classy. It fairly screams “high end.” It dominates and holds our attention. Let’s face it: black has power.

And for years and years and years it has been the color of choice to lay the crown jewels on, as the backdrop for a brochure, in framing… the list goes on.

But let me tell you the one place where everything black does, and stands for, works completely against you.

And against your…

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What Is An Artist Statement Anyway?

bookWhen you’ve read as many truly awful artist statements as I have, it begins to dawn on you that maybe, just maybe, the problem is at the very beginning: what the heck is it?

Here are 5 simple characteristics:

1. The Sticky Factor: An effective statement creates a personal connection to the artwork and stimulates our human thirst for “story.” This, in turn, triggers…

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FREE Art Career Resources

Have you taken advantage of the FREE Art Career Resources being posted?

Here’s what you get. Remember, I’ll be adding to this list until May 19th:

  • #1 – Find Out Exactly How Geoffrey Gorman Became Such A Successful Artist –with my first release of our interview for my brand-new, “Successful Artist Series” of podcasts.
  • #2 – Have People Dying To Know Even More About Your Art With This Simple Sentence with my digital worksheet on “How To Write A Descriptive Sentence of Your Art”
  • #3 Will be posted on Sunday, May 16th.

For more information and to grab yours today visit:


Remember to check back through May 19th for the next FREE Art Career Resource.

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I Turned My Career Around!

Four time, returning smARTist Alumni, Amadea Bailey, tells us exactly why she keeps coming back!

Is your art career sitting on the fence because you are?

Register for the smARTist Telesummit 2010. (It starts in 2 days!)

Your art career will thank you—and that’s a promise!

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Who Is Your Artist Audience?

Since art in a closet, or lined up in the studio, is almost as good as no art at all, I’ve always been fascinated by how artist’s perceive their audience.

Over the years, as I’ve listened to hundreds of artists, I began to understand that finding and nurturing collectors had to do with making a paradigm shift from “me” to “them.”

Mosaic artist, George Fishman, talked with me on his “Mosaic of Art Radio Show” about just this topic: “Who is Your Audience: Making the shift from me to them.”

You can listen to our 30 minute broadcast right here!


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Time to Market… really?

One of the main challenges of trying to fit marketing into an artist’s busy life is this overwhelming sense that it’s just all too much. I know because I struggle with this story too.

And, I have to remind myself that it is just a “story,” and as long as I keep telling myself the same plot over and over, that’s exactly where…

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How to tame the beast

The beast’s name is TwitterFacebookYoutubeRSSFlickr.

It hides in the sites where you network, using tweets or updates, videos or photos to increase your followers/friends/hits.

These are great sites, and, if you work them, they will definitely work for you.

BUT they can easily consume a precious hour or more every day, cutting into the your studio time. That would be the beast part.

At the 2009 smARtist telesummit, networking visibility expert Nancy Marmolejo gave some fabulous tips for taming it.

Here’s one:

Feed your tweets into your Facebook page using the “Twitter” application within Facebook.

1. You’ll find Facebook applications on your home page, in the very bottom left corner.

2. Click on it and a menu pops up.

3. Pick “Browse more applications.”

4. On the next page, type “Twitter” into the search box.

5. On the results page, find the Twitter application. Make sure it’s the application by Twitter–there are some imposters.

6. Click on it. On the page that appears, click on “Go to application.”

7. Enter your Twitter username and password. [It’s OK, you’re giving these to Twitter. They own and run this application.]

8. Voila! All your tweets will also appear as Facebook updates.

Now that’s pretty neat. But there’s a drawback.

If you’re one of the people who tweet a lot, you’re going to have a lot of Facebook updates. Everything you tweet shows up on your Facebook page. Whether or not it makes sense. This can annoy some people so much they hide you on their Facebook page.

But there’s another nifty Facebook application that fixes this. It’s called “Selective Twitter Status.” If you use this application instead when you get to step #5 above, you can choose which tweets go to your Facebook page. When you tweet, just add #fb to the end of the ones you want to show up in Facebook.


The beast, tamed two ways.


When it comes to tips and tricks for your art career, nothing’s better than those 7 days of the smARTist Telesummit 2009!

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