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Old 08-04-2017, 10:26 AM
Harold Roth Harold Roth is online now
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saatchiart stuff

I mentioned saatchiart in another thread and thought I would update with things I found out about selling on there.

I put three paintings up and found that even though I am fairly experienced with SEO, I got pretty much zero views. I also saw that my own views of the items from within the listing management thing were counted as views. So that was baloney.

I looked at what saatchiart recommended and watched some videos by people who actually sold art on there successfully described as necessary to get noticed and to sell.

1. have at least five photos of the image, including details, view from the side, and on the wall/in a room (even a fake room)
2. optimize keywords (check what other people are using who are getting noticed in your genre)
3. describe each work (with keywords in mind) and explain how you arrived at it, what it means, the "story" behind it
4. have an artist's statement, a bio, and a self photo, preferably of you working in your studio
5. post about your works on instagram, pinterest, etc. with links to your saatchiart page

At this point, I started thinking "Why would I do this for them when I could do this for my own site?" But okay, I figured getting into a "collection," as they call them, could result in sales. It has for other people. So I dug deeper.

How to get into a collection:
6. Add two images/week so you get noticed regularly by curators
7. look at the what's new collection that is posted every day by the website curators.
8. Comment positively on the collection images to get yourself noticed by a curators
9. If curators say anything to you, respond positively and politely, even if they want you to change prices or like one guy said, recommend you paint traditional landscapes on gallery wrap canvases instead of traditional profile canvases because people like to buy them more

This started to sound a bit like "be a toady." Hmm.

Anyway, I went to look at the what's new collections for a couple days. It was quite the wakeup call.

About 95% of the artists featured had a degree from an art school.
Almost all had had works exhibited multiple times IRL, including at "Bienniales" (gack!)
Some had had solo shows IRL
And most had many works on saatchiart, typically 50+, but some had well over 100 paintings up there and one had over 600.

I went to art school for two years--40+ years ago--and have had a few things in small-time exhibits. There is no way I can compete with these people, nor do I think most artists could, and frankly, if I were at that level, I would not be selling from an online gallery. I would be selling from my own site and keeping all the money.

I removed my paintings from that site and resolved to use some of the above ideas to optimize my own site.

The whole thing just kind of rubbed me the wrong way. But it helped me organize what I need to do for my own site. I've been putting off doing any promotion on it pretty much since I put it up. Now I feel I have a better handle on what to do.
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Old 11-24-2017, 08:56 AM
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eonworks eonworks is offline
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Re: saatchiart stuff

This is very useful, thanks for sharing!
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Old 11-26-2017, 09:57 AM
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Use Her Name Use Her Name is online now
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Re: saatchiart stuff

I do not know if this is a conversation or not, but in my thinking (based, perhaps on economics) gallery owners, and more pointedly on-line gallery owners are people who set themselves up as middlemen (other word: gate-keepers) who perhaps are in possession of a "ready, willing, and able" buyer base. (Most I have seen do not actually have the buyers they claim to have). Do they actually have this buyer base? Can you, yourself acquire, and condition this buyer base without tons of extra work? Are you working for these people or are you an independent "craftsman or woman."

Honestly, they are in the business to make money for themselves, and you are the person who is expendable. Hence the dictatorial phraseology. You are considered an unpaid "piece" worker who is paid by the piece after commission. Their commission is often totally unearned. Artists fall into this trap because they have been sold a myth about galleries.

A professional, full time artist will be working about 8 (minimum) to 16 hours a day. Often, inserted within that work time there will be meetings, show preparation, travel, trips to the art supply store and other time vampires.

Just like writers, artists need to have long, uninterrupted periods of inspiration and focused work. I have known them to be the sorts of people who would not spend hours per day keeping up with some website. In fact, if I had the money, I would hire a high school or college student to keep track of my online presence and e-mail him or her the latest photos, or snippets of writing.

The artists these on-line services imagine existing really blows my mind. I cannot understand how they could both create work, and spend all their time doing advertising and business. Maybe I am the strange one.

Last edited by Use Her Name : 11-26-2017 at 10:20 AM.
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Old 11-26-2017, 02:21 PM
Harold Roth Harold Roth is online now
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Re: saatchiart stuff

The one good thing about my experience with them is that it got me to work on Instagram. I post my wips on there, and slowly am building a following. I like finding other artists on there too. Haven't seen much traffic to my site, but it's been only two months.
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Old 12-01-2017, 01:05 PM
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Re: saatchiart stuff

I have an acquaintance who makes sales on Saatchi on a regular basis.

She sells realistic work (paintings) of women....her art is in the realm of fashion illustration. And other works of hers are of very beautiful women who fit the description of femme fatale.

She is pleased with Saatchi.
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Old 12-04-2017, 03:05 AM
thirtynine thirtynine is offline
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Re: saatchiart stuff

Even after zero results, I still like Saatchiart, and would love the accolade of selling my work through them. But I know it's never going to happen. I don't spend any time on there any more, although I will post new works when they become available.

I put the time in with Saatchiart, but I came to the conclusion that it is quite simply "curated", and if that actual person doesn't like your work, you are never going to appear in their new works listings or search results.

I think you are right, your history is taken into consideration as well, so they won't waste valuable real-estate on an unproven artists, but I still think the curator's taste is the main reason for being included or not.

During the time when I was uploading my work, all the other newly listed works looked quite similar, and none of them looked anything like my work. But there was one artist in particular who appeared almost daily. I'm sorry to say this, but it was not to my taste, and I couldn't believe such crap was being featured in preference to my work.

So I just came to the conclusion that the person "choosing" the art was never going to chose my work. So I started concentrating my efforts elsewhere.

Whenever I see the name Saatchiart, especially their connection with The Other Art Fair, I feel disappointed that I am not part of it. I'm not going to take my work off their site, but I've got to be realistic.
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Old 12-04-2017, 07:49 AM
Harold Roth Harold Roth is online now
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Re: saatchiart stuff

I think you are right about the curators, and that's why they advise so much sucking up. And in turn I am sure the curators themselves have to answer to higher-ups and that's why they favor all the art school degree stuff, etc. Because that is "proof" that the artists they choose are saleable.

Personally, I do not feel bad that I didn't get any traction there. I don't feel like it was a negative judgment of my work. It just was not a good fit for my work and my history was not a good fit for their idea of what a saleable artist is.
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Old 12-05-2017, 06:09 AM
theBongolian theBongolian is online now
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Re: saatchiart stuff

Quote:
At this point, I started thinking "Why would I do this for them when I could do this for my own site?

But how is an art buyer looking to buy a specific type of painting going to find you? For one thing he's not looking for "you", he's looking for a particular type of painting.

I just went on Saatchi and did an experiment - I used the following search terms
Paintings, Modern, Seascape, Paint, Medium size
in the under $500 price range - I got 8 hits
in the $500 -$1000 price range - I got 10 hits

Then I changed the search term from "paint" to "acrylic" and I got about a hundred hits each in the under $500 and 500-$1,000k price range

WHy "Paint" which includes acrylic, oils, etc. would get fewer hits than "acrylic" I don't know.

But even with "acrylic" as the search term - 100 is not that many paintings to have to compete with. And no matter how many paintings it turned out to be
-I think someone looking for seascapes would be more likely to find one of mine on Saatchi(if I belonged) than to run into my painting on my website by happenstance.

If I am a buyer looking for a painting of a particular type/price range etc. Do I want to trot around to individual websites, wade thru all their stuff in hopes of finding a medium size seascape under $800? And even if I did find one, I'd still want to shop other websites to compare value. Wouldn't it be better as a buyer to go to a place like Saatchi? -- and therefore good for you to have a presence there (as well as your website)

I know next to nothing about Saatchi - just trying to understand and get info.

Last edited by theBongolian : 12-05-2017 at 06:45 AM.
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Old 12-05-2017, 07:15 AM
Harold Roth Harold Roth is online now
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Re: saatchiart stuff

Something's wonky. I just did the same search and got 743 results, with 21 on the first page.

https://www.saatchiart.com/paintings...price=500-1000

Okay, now I see I did not put "paint" in again in one of the slots.

When I was still interested in selling on there, I regularly did searches for various stuff I thought my art might fit into, and generally I found that there were too many results returned, which boosts the importance of curation and therefore ending up at least on the first page of results. One thing I learned from ecommerce: if you are not on the first page of results, you are not going to be selling very much.

The other issue with their search was if there were few results (few like a couple hundred) and they were mostly not relevant. Like try searching for "surrealism" and you get every slob's idea of what surrealism is ("I threw my paint all over the canvas--it's surreal!"). And this is not to even bring up the Chinese sweatshop stuff or money laundering art in every category.

Something really interesting--go back over that search and uncheck the box in the filter section that show you only stuff for sale. Then you will see what has actually sold. It's a real puzzle why half the time.

If you can get it to be a viable selling point for you, post back.

Last edited by Harold Roth : 12-05-2017 at 07:25 AM.
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Old 12-05-2017, 01:34 PM
theBongolian theBongolian is online now
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Re: saatchiart stuff

Thanks for the "uncheck" trick to reveal sold paintings. I wonder if a painting posted in multiple galleries would show as sold in all of them, not just the one it was bought from?

Could the sales technique that pays off for grocery stores - purposefully putting something in the wrong aisle so people find something wonderful they hadn't considered work here?

Paintings that don't match the category would be more likely to stand out from the crowd - and perhaps make a buyer, bleary eyed from looking at seascapes, discover the beauty of a still life.

Last edited by theBongolian : 12-05-2017 at 01:37 PM.
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Old 12-05-2017, 06:55 PM
Harold Roth Harold Roth is online now
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Re: saatchiart stuff

Quote:
Originally Posted by theBongolian
Thanks for the "uncheck" trick to reveal sold paintings. I wonder if a painting posted in multiple galleries would show as sold in all of them, not just the one it was bought from?

Could the sales technique that pays off for grocery stores - purposefully putting something in the wrong aisle so people find something wonderful they hadn't considered work here?

Paintings that don't match the category would be more likely to stand out from the crowd - and perhaps make a buyer, bleary eyed from looking at seascapes, discover the beauty of a still life.
That could be. But since the artists are the ones who are supposed to choose the keywords that supposedly determine which filters the painting will go through, I think it is more of a crap shoot in terms of where things end up. So not only did I find various non-surreal paintings in the surrealism category, but I found many non-abstract paintings in the abstract category and even non-landscapes in the landscape category. Their search is a mess, but it seems that is generally a problem with big database sites like this.

Btw, this did make me think that the best way to get found there was to be exceedingly specific about one's keywords.
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Old 12-06-2017, 10:23 AM
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Re: saatchiart stuff

Aha, a miracle has just happened, I've found one of my paintings! Thanks, theBongolian, for the tip. I just changed one of my categories to "pattern", and went through all the pages. Luckily, there are only 6 pages of pattern paintings, so I was able to find my paintings.

I then changed a few other painting's categories to "geometric". It took me longer to find my painting as there are 56 pages worth of paintings. But I did notice that there were many paintings that were clearly not geometric, so maybe the grocer's analogy is a good one.

Now all I need is for someone to type, paintings/fine art/pattern or geometry/oil. How likely is that? I live in hope.
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Old 12-07-2017, 05:34 AM
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Re: saatchiart stuff

Quote:
Originally Posted by Use Her Name
Just like writers, artists need to have long, uninterrupted periods of inspiration and focused work. I have known them to be the sorts of people who would not spend hours per day keeping up with some website. In fact, if I had the money, I would hire a high school or college student to keep track of my online presence and e-mail him or her the latest photos, or snippets of writing.

The artists these on-line services imagine existing really blows my mind. I cannot understand how they could both create work, and spend all their time doing advertising and business. Maybe I am the strange one.

I especially agree with you about this. I'm also baffled by how one is suppose to have all this time for doing online promotion, etc. Doing quality art is very time consuming, but so is the business side of things. Not only that, but business requires a different type of mindset and skills which probably many artists lack.
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