Black Friday in Art World

Black Friday means a lot of different things in the art world.  For photographers, it can be a great time to get some deals on software, like the $100 price cut on the Topaz bundle (https://www.topazlabs.com/black-friday) or the 50% price cut (also 100 dollars off) Dxo’s Nik bundle (https://shop.dxo.com/en/).  You can also, obviously, find tons of deals on camera equipment and lenses just about everywhere you turn…though do be careful, as a lot of “deals” on amazon and big box stores aren’t really that big of deals at all, just the regular deals that seem better because of the regular manufacturer’s prices that they never sell them at.

Something else to be aware of is Small Artist Saturday.  Instead of buying a lot of stuff from big chains, there’s been a trend the last few years to buy from independent, small artists–I sell a lot of work during this weekend, and am grateful for it, if a little bittersweet that people don’t consider buying year round. But this is something you can start thinking of promoting in years to come yourself. While photography has it’s own awareness month in April, a lot of art is bought in November for the holiday season. On instagram and twitter, using hashtags like SmallArtist and ShopSmallSaturday can help navigate people who are already trying to be more conscious of their habits.

It’s also important to begin practicing what you preach.  I remember my first art purchase. It’s actually sitting right in front of me as I type; a large bowl with a slip painted fish I bought from my ceramic’s professor (Keith Ekstam) in undergrad during an Art Walk (like our Second Saturday).  At first I could only afford one purchase a year, so did artist trades with my fellow students, and then I began purchasing more as I could afford it. Now with every purchase someone makes of my own work, I spend that back into the art community, and donate to causes as well.

So maybe you can’t do anything yet but look, lust at art, and promote your own and others around you.  That’s okay, but think about the community, and the future of your art, and what you’d like to do going forward. So many artists have to be their own marketers, producers, web managers…I spend hours and days frustrated that I have to deal with instagram algorithms and shopify glitches and ups labels instead of making art. And I’m one of the lucky ones. I don’t want to image how hard it will be for the next generation if we don’t continue to look out for each other. There won’t be an art community if we don’t lift each other up, and continue to invest in it. So if you’re thinking about getting a sibling some earrings on Amazon or at Shaneco…consider an art silversmith instead.  If you are thinking about buying a poster, think about buying a watercolor. If you see something you love, repost it WITH the artists name and tags for others to see. Maybe we can’t change people’s spending season, but we can change what they consider buying, and thus appreciating art a little more.

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