The “Okay, I think I’m ready To Be A Professional Artist,” Checklist

Some important, practical advice…thanks to Sylvia White of

The “Okay, I think I’m ready To Be A Professional Artist,” Checklist

Screen Shot 2014-04-07 at 8.33.59 PM“To see far, is one thing…going there is another.” Constantin  Brancusi

Artists who regularly visit this website have acquired a lot of information on how to conduct their business practices. It’s not easy trying to keep track of all the activities necessary to become a working professional artist particularly since most artists are just not suited for the day-to-day practical aspects of running a business.

Making art and making an art career are two different things. A lot of artists are already pressed for time, trying to fit their art making into daily lives that already juggle family, work and other commitments. But, each artist needs to understand that when looking at the whole picture of being an artist as a career, the actual art making is only one piece of a very complicated picture. Artists need to be willing to commit at least 30 minutes a day to their career development. If you can’t manage 30 minutes a day, make it 30 minutes a week, it doesn’t matter. What matters is that you are consistent and diligent about devoting this time, without exceptions, to the business of art. Just as financial managers have recognized that the slow steady saver, who puts away $5 per week since birth, is much better off than the 50 year old who starts saving $1000 per month. Your career assets will experience a better growth opportunity if you start early and remain constant.

If you need some ideas about how to spend your 30 minutes, try using this checklist as your guide.

  • You have applied for a Business Tax Registration certificate and Sales Tax permit that allows you to purchase supplies wholesale and charge sales tax.
  • You have purchased your domain name ( and established an internet presence. (either your own site or an artists’ co-op site)
  • You have either hired a photographer, or assembled the photographic equipment necessary to properly document your work.
  • You have documented your work with properly labeled slides and organized them in digital files.
  • You have done the necessary research to come up with a target list of places (galleries, museums, consultants) that may be receptive to your work.
  • You have subscribed to relevant art publications such as, ArtCalendar, Artweek, ArtNews, Art in America, etc. and whatever other publications will keep you posted on the activities of the contemporary art world in your community and elsewhere.
  • You have made a commitment to yourself to devote at least x number of hours per week to the business aspects of your career…sending out slides, visiting galleries, making follow up phone calls, researching opportunities, talking to other artists.
  • You have read your local art reviews and visited those exhibitions
  • You have organized files for yourself to keep track of in coming and out going correspondence, emails, phone calls, and contacts. (A contact management program, such as ACT, can be invaluable.)
  • You send out at least one package per week that will familiarize a gallery, private art consultant, curator or collector with your work.
  • You agree to spend at least 1 hour per month online checking for new websites, e-commerce sites or art sites that may be of value.
  • You email your website link to at least 3 people per month
  • You have started to assemble a personal mailing list of friends, target galleries and potential collectors that may be interested in your work for use when you send out exhibition announcements.
  • You have had simple business cards printed with your name, address, phone number and email address, to distribute to anyone potentially interested in your work.
  • You have created an updated bio that outlines all your previous exhibitions, education, collectors, and awards.
  • You have written an artists’ statement, not for distribution, but rather to help you talk intelligently about your work, should someone ask.
  • You have created a simple consignment receipt and bill of sale for future use.
  • You have determined pricing parameters for your work.
  • You have prepared a referral list of resources for future use: framers, photographers, packers and shippers, printers, etc.
  • You have come to terms with the possibility of rejection and feel confident you can handle it.

Remember, this checklist is just a beginning. You will need to personalize it and adapt it to your specific needs. But, if you commit yourself to devoting time to all the activities listed above, you will have accepted the responsibility of seeing yourself as a working professional artist. Over time, the results you see WILL give you the exposure you want and your work deserves.


Tomorrow, March 21st – West Tech Alumni Spring Craft Fair


Big show tomorrow! Come out to St Mary Magdalene Byzantine Catholic Church, 5390 W 220th St, Fairview Park, OH 44126 from 9am to 3pm for the West Tech Alumni Association’s annual Spring Craft Fair. Over 80 exhibitors this year, and some great food provided by the St Mary Mag kitchen. See below for a complete list of exhibitors…

2015 West Tech Program_Page_1 2015 West Tech Program_Page_2

Friday, March 20th at 78th Street Studios

78SS TF 2011 Hdr

Join us tomorrow, March 20th from 5-10pm at this month’s Third Friday Art Walk at 78th Street Studios, 1300 W 78th Street, Cleveland OH 44102. Northcoast Artisans Market is located on the new Ramp Level! This month’s featured artist is woodworker Jason J Pinter from Western Hills Woodworking in Upton, Wyoming. A complete list of this month’s exhibitors is below. Hope to see you there!


Victor Samalot.  Solo instrumental acoustic guitarist mixing light rock, jazz, Latin, world and improve.


  • ArtsParadis – Jewelry & accessories
  • ArTrendz – Fresh brewed coffee, whole beans, artwork on coffee bags/mugs/shirts & chocolates
  • Bee Glorified Inc – Local Honey & Honey Products
  • Beethings Studios – Eclectic Jewelry
  • The Bom – Adult Truffles
  • Brian’s Artisan Bakery – Italian Breads & Bakery
  • Chris Deighan – Drawings & Apparel
  • Karlis Dingergs – Mixed Media
  • Finley Studio – Fine Jewelry
  • Fleur de Life Shops – Vintage Style Jewelry
  • Gifts In Jars – Preserves & Canned Goods
  • Heather Smotzer Designs – Designs in Metals
  • Rhea Kulcsar NYC – Druzy Jewelry
  • Northcoast Promoitons, Inc – Promotional information/handouts for events
  • Paw Kids – Pet Bandanas
  • Peripeti Home – Hand Poured Candles
  • Planet Egg – Pysanky Ukrainian Eggs
  • Premiere Screening – Clothing, cups, bags & fine paper prints with contemporary & retro prints
  • MR Design – Photography
  • Sparrow Art Gallery & Studio – Mixed Media Art
  • Stone Chicken Studo – Mixed Media
  • *Western Hills Woodworking – Wood

*Featured Artist of the Month Jason J Pinter from Western Hills Woodworking in Upton, Wyoming…


Saturday, March 14th Vendor Line-Up for Brunswick Kiwanis Spring Show

Brunswick Kiwanis Club Spring Craft Show is tomorrow, March 14th from 10 am til 3 pm — 3637 Center Road / Brunswick Recreation Center / Brunswick

Multipurpose Room

  • 1-One Sweet Deal-Homemade Chocolates
  • 2-ArtsParadis-Jewelry
  • 3-ArtsParadis-Wine Charms
  • 4-Backwoods Leather-Carved & Tooled Leather Items
  • 5-Loni B Jewelry-Handmade Jewelry
  • 6-Cinch-Seatbelt Pillows,Carmats, Doll houses, bags & boxes
  • 7-Sweet Celebrations-Candy & chocolates bouquets & wreaths
  • 8-Creative Artistry-Crochet, magnets & jewelry
  • 9-Sub Rosa Teas-Loose Leaf Tea with Organic Ingredients
  • 10-Barbara Stephenson-Magnetic Bracelets
  • 11-Only One-One of a kind crafts from re purposed items
  • 12-Karen Vagarasoto-Trash to Treasure
  • 13-Elaines Painting-Handpainted Glass/vases/candles/bird houses
  • 14-Heidi Hartzfeld-Pourch Swings, wreaths, Easter & Sring Décor
  • 15-Jackie Jira-Handmade painted recycled wood home décor
  • 16-KT Images Embroidery-Embroidered lace, towels, appliques, bookmarks, key chains & jewelry
  • 17-Crystal’s Creations & I Craft-Ceramic Tile Coasters & Burlap Wreaths, Quote/hairbow/key/sunglasses boards,
  • 18-Family Shed-Concrete Painted Patio Pavers
  • 19-Kathy’s Kreations-School Specific Hair Bows & Accessories, Tuttu Totes & Jewelry
  • 20-The Bom-Chocolate Truffles
  • 21-Forever And A Day-Candy treat boxes, forever snowflakes, bows, ribbon, sports & holiday (special occasion)
  • 22-Elizabeth Accessories-Fashion Scarves
  • 23-Elizabeth Accessories-with coordinating Jewelry
  • 24-Memories by Margot-Scrapbooking
  • 25-Ginny Persinger-Crochet
  • 26-Ginny Persinger-Crochet
  • 27-Taylor & her Dollie-18″ doll clothes & accessories
  • 28-Lilla Rose-Beaded Hair & Scarf Accessories
  • 29-Hickory Daiquiri-Handcarved wooden spoons
  • 30-Cathie Brenkus-Crocheted Kitchen Towels & Beaded Bracelets
  • 31-Beautifly Pure-All natural Vegan bath & body products
  • 32-Simply Cathy-Jewelry & Black & White Drawings
  • 33-Patti Gill-Fabric Crafts
  • 34-Patti Gill-Fabric Crafts
  • 35-Flip Flop Fun Photography-Custom made Coasters & Photography
  • 36-Patty Figula-Gift Tags & Pottery
  • 37-Daynalie Craft Creation-Hairbows & Accessories, Flip Flops & Hairbow Holders
  • 38-Lynnwood Apiary-Honey
  • 39-Ashes to Beautiful-Handmade Soaps & Skin Care Products
  • 40-Sew Ready-Dog bandanas, baskets, tote bags & gift bags


  • 41-Unique Whimsical Crafts by Vada Fay-Fairy Art Dolls, Beaded Art & ornaments, painted Glass & Crafts.
  • 42-Pat Tuckerman-Knit & Crochet
  • 43-Paper Planet Wearables-Jewelry made from recycled paper
  • 44-Lori Bellett-Pet Items, Handmade
  • 45-Mom’s Attic-Crochet towels, quilts & baby
  • 46-Lucky Charms Hand Made Jewelry-Jewelry/Fused Glass Work
  • 47-Sixth Scent Candles-Candles, candle holders & wooden Coasters
  • 48-Mary Gold Creations-Silk Arrangements
  • 49-Mary Gold Creations-Silk Arrangements


Meeting Rooms--

  • 50–
  • 51-Sew Modern Mama-Baby Gear, Infinity Scarves, Bibs & Aprons
  • 52-Camille’s Ceramics & Crafts-Ceramics, tree bulbe & straw hats
  • 53-LMNOPieces-Ohio Pillows
  • 54-Bearded Carpenter-Wood Turnings
  • 55–
  • 56-June Bug Bowtique-Hairbows & Tutu’s
  • 57–
  • 58-Pat Miller-Hand Crocheted Items
  • 59-AromaSoy Candles-Handmade, All Natural, Non-Toxic Soy Candles
  • 60-Lifetime FamilyChiropractor-Massages


  • Barb Cabot-The Crooked Kettle Popcorn Co.