Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Promotional Strategies: Hartford Art School Summer Session

Promotional Strategies

Hartford Art School

MFA Program: Summer Session

Von Glitschka and I will be working with you to develop promotional materials for your creative business. Our goal is to not only assist you in elevating your brand but also guide you in properly positioning yourself in the creative marketplace.  

To get the most out of the week, be prepared to come to class on Day One with a 10 minute digital presentation on the current state of your branding, marketing and promotional strategy. We also want to know what your goals are for your work as you move forward. From this insight, we will collaboratively select a strategic, brand-savvy promotional initiative based upon your unique marketing goals. Throughout the week, we will work one-on-one with you on your project. Your final project will  be presented to the class on the last day. Attached is the class schedule for the summer session. We are very excited to be working with you and look forward to a highly productive and creative week!

I have set-up this resource blog to serve as your interactive syllabus for the class. I would like you to review the suggested projects list. You can also do something outside the list.

The final project that you choose to work on is up to you. I highly recommend that you focus your efforts on a promotional endeavor that you can immediately utilize in your marketing mix.

In additiongather up what you have in place to date for marketing and promotion, making notes of your ideas and thoughts for a project that will move you forward in your creative endeavors. Make sure to bring digital files of your art work to utilize in your promotional materials.

Lastly, make sure to watch the video above on "Make Good Art" by Neil Gaiman. It is very inspiring, as he simplifies everything into three simple words! 

You must have your final project submitted on the last day of class. You will present your work to the class using the digital projector.

I am very excited to be working with you and look forward to a highly productive and creative week!

Navigating the Labyrinth
Building Fantastical Worlds
Interactive Storytelling


Personal Identity System (business card, letterhead, #10 envelope, catalog envelope label and note card). Send on actual stationery paper so I can see the color, finish, weight, etc.)  

Identity System Essentials

Business Card: 3 1/2" x 2", 2" x 3 1/2" or Custom
Letterhead: 8 1/2" x 11"
Envelope (#10): 9 1/2" x 4 1/8"
Note Card(s): Make sure to fit inside a commercially available envelope (custom envelopes are costly)

Color Inspirations:
Adobe Color Wheel

Paper Suppliers: 
Neenah Paper 
Jam Paper

Branding & Target Marketing
Brand Worksheet
Branded Head Shot Examples

Mind Mapping
Here are the latest in color trends for Spring 2016

Visual Documentary or Video Presentation using Imovie or Windows Movie Maker (music should be royalty free or self-generated). 

Instructions for Imovie and Movie Maker are included here. A high definition version can be posted on YouTube

See VIDEOS by former MFA students

Social Media presence on the web that is specific to your business WordPress or BloggerFacebookYouTubeTwitterLinked-in. To start building the profile, include at least one to two entries in each that incorporates a pic/link.

To make sure you are using correct grammar on the web, check out Grammarly.com

Electronic Portfolio to be presented as a website, including at least 20 pieces, your bio with headshot, press, client list, exhibitions and links to your social media sites and blog, etc. Also include a contact page without an info request prompt. Make sure the site is brand-aware and is cohesive with other promotional material.   

Use cross platform website testing to analyze your site on different platforms.

Portfolio Sites: 


Mail-away Portfolio that is a custom, brand-aware and easily updatable physical presentation of work that and can be produced in multiples to send out to prospects with leave-behind samples and a comment card. Packaging of the mail-away (box, wrap, label, etc must also be included).
Phd Bookbinding  Ka-blam
TPI Solutions Ink

ISSUU (online catalog)

Drop-off Portfolio:

a collection of work that can be easily updated, including a digital presentation. 

Promotional Initiative: create a targeted promotional campaign

Mail Chimp

Constant Contact

Event Marketing
Facebook Live Event


Merchandising: create a line of products using your work. Books, paper products and stationery, gift products, collectibles, prints, etc.

Teaching Package: updated, targeted to each application and professionally designed on your letterhead in a electronic PDF format.  For vitae include your education, work experience, teaching & speaking experience, relevant books and articles written, exhibitions, awards, press coverage etc.  Also have a cover letter, 15-20 samples of your work and the same of your student work and a teaching statement. Bio and client list can also be included.
For Art Teaching Jobs, go to College Art Association here.

Press Kit: create a media kit to send out in print or as an interactive PDF.  

Instructor: Lisa L. Cyr

I will be working with you to create some amazing promotional work for your unique brand! I love teaching and working with other artists that are as passionate about the creative process as I am. You can check out an
 interview from The Artist's & Graphic Designer's Market  on me that does a good job on explaining my philosophies on art, creativity and the importance of creative collaboration. To know a little about my background and interests there is another interview from CreateMixedMedia.  

I have authored seven books as well as a hundreds of articles for many of the industry's leading art publications. In addition, I teach in several of the top MFA (Master of Fine Art) programs in the United States, assisting talented artists in elevating their brand and promoting their work. I have lectured and taught workshops at the following institutions:

American Institute of Graphic Arts
The Society of Illustrators, NYC
The Art Students League of NY
The National Illustration Conference
The Norman Rockwell Museum
Columbus Society of Communicating Arts
The Hartford Art School
University of the Arts
The Artist Network University
The Art Institute of Pittsburgh Online
NH Creative Club
Pratt Institute
Parsons School of Design
Savannah College of Art & Design
Kendall College of Art & Design
Southern Utah University
Virginia Commonwealth University
Syracuse University
Sage College of Albany
Marywood University
Kutztown University
New Jersey City University
The University of New Hampshire
The University of Kansas
Keene State College
Notre Dame College
NH Institute of Art
Rochester Institute of Technology
Delgado Community College
Sharon Arts Center
Northampton Community College
NYC Final Cut Pro
Rivier College
Notre Dame College
Hesser College

East Stroudsburg University 
Ohio Tourism Bureau 
Mohawk Valley Community College 
Shanghai Normal School Cultural Exchange

For the Lectures: (If you are interested in the images/content used in the lectures for your teaching/school, I utilize the following books that I have authored:)

Innovative Promotions That Work

To make their audience stop, look, and listen, creatives need to produce memorable promotions that speak to a prospective client’s needs in unique and innovative ways. Rather than relying on any one venue, firms should penetrate their target market on many fronts. Image and brand-building initiatives, campaign endeavors, keepsake promotions, publication and newsletter promotions, event invitations, announcements and greeting cards can all be employed as ways to build brand recognition and make a long lasting impact with key clients. Whether a creative company is new and embarking on a launch or a seasoned firm looking to maintain or expand their market share, a distinctive promotion can prove to be very effective in calling attention to what a business has to uniquely offer. For creative professionals, both seasoned and newcomers, Innovative Promotions That Work shows how to create distinction through promotional initiatives that speak to the marketplace in ways that inspire, motivate and get response.

The Art of Promotion

With the overall decline in the global economy, many creatives find themselves at a crossroad. Work is no longer abundant and budgets have decreased significantly from years past. In today’s volatile marketplace, survival is dependent upon the ability to make an impact with key clients. The Art of Promotion offers innovative ways to create distinction. The author, Lisa L. Cyr, deconstructs a global array of exciting promotions to enable anyone to choose the right option for their budget, ability and market. The addition of insightful technical tips takes the fear out of venturing outside the norm. In addition, many pieces include cost-effective alternatives to achieving high-end effects. The book will enable both seasoned and newcomers to confidently employ alternative approaches and techniques. As creatives push the envelope and try new things, the industry evolves and grows as a result.

· Explores innovative production techniques to give any project the edge it needs to standout in the marketplace

· Features the use of unconventional surfaces and printing techniques; unique constructions, folds and die-cuts; interesting bindings, fasteners and wraps; and alternative uses and add-ons

· Provides valuable insight into the process behind a multitude of unconventional techniques

· Technical tips take the risk out of exploring outside the norm while “Do It for Less” sections provide cost-effective alternatives to high-end effects

· Special sidebars offer the latest in strategic approaches and marketing venues that will prove lucrative in the future

Experimental Painting
Experimental Painting investigates exploratory methodologies, techniques and approaches in mixed-media art. Throughout the highly visual book, many exciting in-depth demonstrations are featured, documenting cutting-edge mixed -media painting processes from concept to final execution. To offer an extensive array of visually-stimulating possibilities for artists to explore, both two-dimensional and three-dimensional techniques are covered in a range of subject matter. Conceptual and thematic approaches include using symbolism, metaphor and allegory, incorporating pluralism and non-linear storytelling, utilizing automatism and freeform painting and employing costuming, props and theatrical settings. Developing works both in multiples and in a series is also included. In addition, special sections on creative exploration detail the playful act of experimentation, utilizing alternative tools, materials and techniques. By delving into the myriad applications of mixed-media painting, the creative process is reignited, opening up a gateway for artistic works to grow and flourish.

To assist artists in venturing out on their own creative path with a unique voice and vision, topics on nurturing the creative spirit within, developing personal content through journalism, embracing a multidisciplinary mindset and creating message-driven art provide insight into the development of an artistic personality. The book closes with a chapter on creative self-promotion, revealing the latest marketing and presentation strategies for the working artist. There is an ever-expanding interest in exploring unconventional processes and approaches to establish aesthetic distinction in the marketplace. For artists that are looking to push their work to a new level, this book will be a valuable resource and an ongoing source for creative inspiration.

Art Revolution
We are currently in the midst of an artistic revolution. No other time has seen such innovation in the way art can be intellectualized, produced and presented into the culture. Artists are breaking from conventional approaches, reexamining the fundamental methodology in which they work. They are becoming much more forward-thinking, almost entrepreneurial, venturing out with a content-driven approach to discover new pathways for their work to flourish and prosper. The traditionally accepted roles of art and the artist are being reinterpreted, reinvented and redefined to embrace a new paradigm, opening the door to a more progressive social consciousness.

Art Revolution is at the forefront in exploring alternative, innovative ways of conceptualizing and creating art that is on the cutting-edge. Throughout the highly visual book, insightful and thought-provoking profiles of leading artists and illustrators accompany stellar, multi-media work. The book also provides insight into the historical influences behind contemporary thinking and approaches, investigating the origins of alternative, unconventional picture making throughout the decades. In addition, exciting splash spreads featuring demonstrations and behind-the-scene looks at groundbreaking artists at work help shed light on signature processes and techniques. There is a rich amalgam of media available to creatives today, offering a wide range of possibilities for exploration and experimentation. Art Revolution reveals how alternative, mixed media aesthetics is uniting the disciplines of two-dimensional, three-dimensional, digital and new media art in inventive combinations. For those wanting to venture outside the norm, the book includes a directory of the manufacturers and suppliers used by the featured artists so that sources for materials, access to health and safety procedures and additional information on unconventional techniques and approaches are easily accessible. For artists that are looking for an edge, wanting to push their work further, this book is a valuable asset and ongoing source for inspiration.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Podcasting with Aspiring Artists!

Check out the podcasts that I did with my teaching partners at New Hampshire Institute of Art (NHIA) children's author Paul Durham and graphic novelist Cory Levine I am so proud of the students who volunteered to talk about their work, process and goals! Now they get to share their dreams and aspirations with the world!

From the host of Telling Lies to Children Podcast Paul Durham "This is Part One of a special two-part series recorded live, on-campus, at the New Hampshire Institute of Art. NHIA is currently the only college in the country offering BFA degrees that require all students to complete three semesters of professional practices, business marketing, and entrepreneurship studies for the arts.

I teach professional practices at NHIA and recently combined forces with my faculty colleagues, Lisa Cyr and Cory Levine, to give our first year students an opportunity to practice talking about their work. Volunteers were invited to participate in a podcast interview in front of a live audience of their peers. The episode is a little experimental and a bit of a departure from my usual format, but it was fun to hear young artists talk about their art, influences, and experiences as fine arts students."


# 26 - Live with the BFA Students at NHIA (Part I)


Feature in Hippo:

Monday, February 20, 2017

Personal Narrative

The series of videos is supplemental to a lecture I give my undergraduate students on Personal Narrative. The creatives and creative group cultures shown are some of the best in the respective disciplines.

Marshall Arisman
Chris Sickels
The Secret Subway book trailer from RedNoseStudio on Vimeo.

Kirsty Mitchell Photography

Live Q&A on Wonderland at the Museum at FIT, New York. March 2016 from Kirsty Mitchell Photography on Vimeo.

David Carson Design

David Carson Design

MacKenzie Childs

Neil Gaiman: Make Good Art Talk

Talking about Your Work Podcast

Studio Secrets: Marshall Arisman

Behind the Scenes with Chris Sickels

Sunday, November 6, 2016

Working with Galleries

Many galleries require exclusive representation by geographic area or sales. They usually work on a commission percentage but some buyout at wholesale (very rare). Consult a lawyer before signing any contracts that are confusing to you.

Look for galleries that currently promote work in your genre. Go online for contact names.

Look for gallery listings in:
Artsy Listings of Galleries

Art in NY FREE Resource Guide

Gallery Guides Online Listing

Art in America/Annual Guide

The Artist's & Graphic Designer's Market

List of University Art Galleries and Museums in the US by State

The Art Guide

Go gallery touring when visiting large cities and make detailed notes.

Personal Identity Package & Promotional Materials
Many galleries are now accepting electronic submissions through PDFs


Artist statement

Reproductions of work 

Digital Catalog

List of Works (title, medium, size, date, price, your name & copyright)

Head shot

Copy of reviews where your work is highlighted

Business card

Cover Letter 

For print submissions use a SASE and comment card (write gallery name on it for identification)

Consistent body of work to show

Confident attitude and clear understanding of work and goals

Follow up on both acceptances and rejections/make notes

Find out when they want to see originals, ask about the responsible party for shipping costs, framing, hanging, promo materials, etc.

What is their commission?

Calculating Your Desired Income 100 - Gallery commission = your % of income received THEN desired income = RETAIL PRICE your % income

CO-Op Galleries: (usually run by a group of artists) each artist helps in operating and maintaining the space. A % of sales is taken for expenses.

Vanity (Rental) Galleries: You rent space and organize your own show and promotion of it. BEWARE!

Shops: Low budget art/ no promo by shop and usually run on a 50/50 consignment.

Fairs & Trade shows: Booth rental where you must have your own display (rain, shine, or wind), business forms, etc. Some trade shows are juried and have competitions. Some are in large facilities and run regularly.

Resume for Gallery Work Education:

Degrees: order of most recent (MFA, BFA) Art Institutions attended Artists studied under

Gallery Affiliation: Gallery name(s), Place

Teaching: List Schools, Colleges, Institutions, etc.

Organizations, Institutions, Colleges, etc. Lecture Title, Place (City, State) Artist in Residences: Residence, City, State Project

Professional Affiliations: Organizations, Clubs, Memberships etc.

Exhibitions: Select One Person Shows and Group Shows

Awards, Grants, Fellowships: List Project and Organization Public & Corporate Collections: List Client and Place (ex: ABC Financial, Boston, MA)

Published Books & Articles: (written on your work or commissioned)

Annual TEFAF Art Market Report

Corporate Art Dealers/Consultants








Publishing Markets

For artists and authors wanting to create works for books or magazines, here are some insights. Many publishers are merging and many are being bought out and dissolved. A main publishing house may have many divisions and imprints under it.


Primary Contacts: Creative Director, Art Director or Acquisitions Editor

Types: Mass Market, Trade, Children's Books, Text Books & Educational

Always be aware of the publisher's marketing intentions especially when royalties are concerned. Some publishers will pay for models, props, photography etc.

Go to a large bookstore to see where your work would fit. Make note of publishers and look up their contact information and recent book list online.

Mass Market Books:

They are positioned to sell in general merchandising outlets and carry a varied distribution to retailers.

Types: Romance, Western, Science Fiction, Fantasy, Horror and Mystery


Must have a strong knowledge of the genre in which you want to work.

Literary Marketplace
Infinite Worlds by Vincent DiFate
Love Lines... Romance Reader's Guide to Printed Pleasures by Rosemary Guiley

Trade Books:
They are sold and marketed towards trade locations like bookstores. They range in subject matter and style. (Use a range from photography, graphic solutions and illustration on covers). Since the printing runs are low, the compensation is lower than mass market books. They are produced in both hard and soft cover editions and usually are larger in format than paperback books. Hard cover freelance assignments should negotiate a soft cover reprint price at the time of the hard cover contract.

Literary and International Literary Marketplace
Writer's Market Covers & Jackets by Steven Heller & Anne Fink
Art for the Written Word 25 Yrs of Book Cover Art by Wendell Minor

Children's Books:
Children's Books (picture books) are usually a 32-page books that illustrate a very short text. They are targeted toward children as well as parents, educators and libraries. Models, props, etc. are sometimes reimbursable expenses with publishers. Also be aware of the intentions of marketing the book and how your work will be promoted and made into other adaptations (film, audio merchandise, etc.)

Tips: Must demonstrate a strong knowledge of character development with a narrative quality. Multicultural diversity is also good. You may want to have your contracts reviewed over by a lawyer because of the time commitment and royalty/payment set-up. Royalties run on the average 5% up to 15,000 copies and 6.25% thereafter. This doubles if you also write the book.

Submit your book dummies with a manuscript, color samples, cover letter, SASE and comment card. Make sure to register the pictures and text with the Library of Congress first.

Children's Writers & Illustrators Market
Children's Book Council
Society of Illustrators Children's Book Panel & Exhibition
Society of Children's Book Writers & Illustrators
Book Links
American Library Association
The Very Best of Children's Book Illustration by the Society of Illustrators
NYC Writing for Young Children by Claudia Lewis
Writing & Illustrating Children's Books... Two Perspectives by Berthe Amos & Eric Suben

Educational publishing is a lot of work for hire so be aware. Spot illustrations and work demonstrating or showing a process.

Magazines and Newspapers have a specific personality and profile. Seek out the publications that fit your work or personality, ranging from trade to consumer. Magazines Newspapers Newsletters (often considered advertising as they are produced for in-house purposes or for distribution)

Primary Contacts:

Editorial Office (located in the publication table of contents)
Art Director

Tips: Newspapers have quick turn-around times and are limited in reproductive quality. Magazines have greater creative possibilities and reach a more targeted audience. You should show a strong knowledge of the medium with an understanding of the relationship between copy and art.

SRDS (Trade and Consumer) Media Kits
Gale Directory of Publications
Editor and Publisher Yearbook
Gebbie Directory
Ulrich Intl. Periodical Directory
Society of Publication Designers
Society of Illustrators
Editor & Publisher Magazine
Publishers Weekly Publish

Saturday, November 5, 2016

Corporate, Advertising and Design Markets

Corporations may work directly with an outside agency but a lot have an in-house creative department.


VP Marketing/Corporate Communications
Marketing. Manager(s) (product/service specific)
Advertising Mgr. (in charge of promotional)
Product Manager(s)

Tips: Organizational hierarchy will vary.
Not very visual people. Need to communicate strongly with words.
May have to present work to a group, attend meetings and conference calls.
Experience in working with Creative Briefs.

O'Dwyer's Directory of Corp. Communications
Standard Directory of Advertisers
Thomas Register of Manufacturers
Business Magazines Top 100 Advertisers Lists
Advertising Clubs
Trade Organizations
Art Director's Club
Direct Marketing Association
Chamber of Commerce

Advertising Age
Target Marketing
Marketing & Media Decisions
Trade Specific Publications

Advertising Agency: (full-service) provides their clients with all the necessary services to handle their advertising efforts.

Job Functions & Responsibilities:
1. Account Services - responsible for agency/client relationship
2. Creative Services
- responsible for the design, production and control (traffic control) of projects.
             a. creative directors
             b. art directors
             c. designers
             d. layout and tech support
             e. writers, and other specialists
3. Marketing - media planning and placement, research, and sales promotion
4. Business Administration & Finance - accounting, office management, and personnel
5. Special Division - task force (new accounts, etc.)

Tips: Agencies require a strong knowledge of media (ie. newspaper vs. magazine) and reproduction (k/o, bleeds, traps, etc).

Projects will range from 2D and 3D print to broadcast animation. Clients will also vary.

Have some work in context.

Experience in working with Creative Briefs.

May have to present work to a group, attend meetings or conference calls.

High comprehensive layouts may be required for approval instead of roughs or sketches.

Your price will be marked up (17.65% is the industry standard).
A la Carte Agencies: an independent providing select agency services

Standard Directory of Advertising Agencies
Adweek Agency Directory
Business Magazines Top 100 Lists
American Association of Advertising Agencies
Advertising Clubs
Art Director's Club
Chamber of Commerce

Advertising Age
Target Marketing
Marketing & Media Decisions
Graphic Design:USA
Communication Arts 

Design Firms specialize in creative and will work with agencies and corporations.

Primary Contacts: 
Creative Director
Art Director

Tips: Some specialize in a particular market ( i.e. packaging, environmental, web design, etc.)
Double mark-up when design firms work with advertising agencies.
Some design firms work in COOP with advertising agencies.
Clients and projects will vary.

The Design Firm Directory
Graphic Artist Guild
Broadcast Designers Association
International Design by Electronics Assoc.
Type Directors Club
Society of Environmental Graphic Designers
Art Directors Club
AIGA Journal

Recruiters: (from freelance, part time and full time).