Focus on your art
ACCORDING to a short Wikipedia entry I came across, although “cultural consumers” may have once represented a small segment of the population, this group is rapidly expanding through access to technology and the internet.
I have time and time again emphasised that our art as a whole can be digitised and distributed worldwide. But plenty of factors still hold many local artists back from actually testing the international market. The main reason being resources and finances, but as an entrepreneur you have to take responsibility and risks in getting your content to the global market.
Recent research indicates that consumers are now more connected, active in their communities, and creative when it comes to choosing what they want to consume. Additionally, they aspire to be viewed as thinking, expressive human beings rather than mass market targets, so artworks, music, films, books or whatever form of creativity is now engaged with the idea that the acquisition or ownership of such goods is a reflection of status and self-identity of the consumer.
So, you ultimately have to have a niche that makes people from all different types of social scenes, backgrounds or even countries feel special.
As an artist, you have to explore or criticise this idea in a variety of ways, if one form of advertising and building a fan base doesn’t work, then try going viral or working your butt off and force the passion on them. Bottom-line is: do whatever you have to do to get the consumer to buy into your talent.
Also, arts groups and societies are everywhere and are learning to live amid unfamiliar realities, from shifting demo- graphics and consumption patterns to the mounting influence of the internet. Residencies, sponsorships, festivals or art conventions are all now a little bit closer be- cause of the net. So if the arts council won’t help you, find another way; if the biggest local award show does not take your work, look for another one that can.
Think about your art as much as you think of who is going to consume it. Have a reason for creating and do not just do it because you can. I am not talking to the average “I can sing and dance”, I am talking to the struggling “I think I should quit, but I love this so much” type of artist.