April 15, 2009 | Alyson Stanfield

7 Ways to Distinguish Yourself as an Artist

  1. Be kind to everyone. Listen to people and learn to see the world through their eyes, even if you don’t agree. Be kind with your words–whether spoken or written.
  2. Be professional in everything you do. Be present and aware of your actions.
  3. Write thank you notes to everyone who helps you take a step forward. Write thank you notes for every little thing. Handwritten ones are rare today and will set yours apart from the emailed ones that everyone else is sending. (And be sure to use note cards that feature your art.)
  4. Follow up. Follow up on every lead that is given to you, no matter how impossible it seems. Someone is giving you that lead because they care about you and your work. Show them you appreciate their interest by following up on it. You never know where it might take you. Same holds true for following up on the contacts you make in your arts festival booth or at an exhibition opening or anywhere else. Contact them immediately. You only have a brief window to capitalize on your contacts.
  5.  Follow through. Do not promise anything you can’t deliver. Ever. Period. Be dependable and make it easy for people to work with you. Better yet, make them want to work with you.

  6.  Remember names and details about people. When you get their business cards, turn them over immediately and write down where you met them and something that will help you remember so that you can personalize your note to them. (You ARE going to write a note and say how nice it was to meet them!)
  7.  Go the extra mile. Don’t settle for adequacy. Push yourself toward brilliance. Pay attention to details.
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