AKA: The ❤ of 'Free Art'.
I showed my mother the freebies that I planned to give away at one of my art showings, cheap buttons and keychains with my art on them. My mom says I should never give away my art for free. Many tend to agree that 'mother knows best'. Perhaps if I'd listend to mom more, the less messy my life would have been. But that's a story for another day.
Sorry, mom, but I'm a creature ruled by my ❤ (and passions). Art is a great passion at this stage of my life and I ❤ to share it with others whether it translates into dollars, or not. I admit I'm human enough to ❤-ily welcome the dollars when they present themselves, but when I hand out those little trinkets with my art on it, the people on the receiving end don't feign interest. They are truly touched or excited to receive it and that touches my ❤. It's like a little piece of myself journeying to different parts of the state (or country) in a purse or pocket, and if it's lucky enough not to land in a rubbish bin, it's all the more well-traveled and, hopefully, cherished.
Most of the visitors who come to the venue where I frequently show are very young. When they receive my freebie it opens up the dialogue; they ask myriad questions about my art. Or ask my opinion about their art (as if age translates to experience when I'm just as wet behind the ears as they are). But I ❤ their enthusiasm and I ❤ to keep that fire for art burning even if their pocketbooks can't afford what's hanging on the walls.
Of course I never ignore the practical. My freebies always have my business cards attached. Since handing out the trinkets, traffic on my website has increased dramatically, bounce rate has lowered impressively and subscriptions to the site have doubled. My site may not be as busy as Grand Central (yet), but to this emerging artist who has no SEO skills, just a ❤ full hope, it's impressive enough.
On another note, with February being the month of all things hearts, flowers and love, what's better than creating art of the heart? Literally. My 'Matters of the Heart' triptych consists of three bold images created with a personal touch and Valentine vibe of romantic and passionate reds, wines and magentas.
With February being dedicated to all things ❤, what is it you ❤ to do? For me, it's creating art that elicits a reaction and that reaction may come from a freebie or two.
So in the parlance of the day, let's circle back: Should I be giving art away? Best answer: I strive first to be familiar hoping the rest will follow. Whatever 'the rest' may be I don't know from this vantage point, all I do know is a generous spirit is remembered.
Artwork shown in this article: 'Barbed Wire Heart', 'Queen of Her Heart', 'Jade, Queen of My Heart', 'The Heart of the King'. Prints can be purchased from the artist's website: www.thesketchiebeast.art/SHOP