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When I first started to write this post it was going to be about the pros and cons of art licensing. However, a quick Google search will turn up a gazillion articles on exactly that. So I will keep this writing to two points.
There are two important factors in any healthy relationship including those between a potential licencor and licencee: communication and listening with intent.
When all of the elements are there for success such as an enthusiastic and hard working sales person on their end and a seasoned professional artist with great content on the other. What can go wrong?
Whether it is a marriage, home purchase, licensing agreement, etc. there is always a deal breaker. And to avoid that, you must learn a few skills such as listening with intention.
This is an important point. Listening with intention simply means that you pay attention to what the other party is saying with the intent to “understand” and not just “respond”. Once you set your own feelings and thoughts aside and gain an understanding of the other person, you can then know exactly how to proceed. When someone is clear and direct with you, it is always in your best interest to fully comprehend. And when they are not, ask questions if you are uncertain. Never assume anything.
Communication is defined as any act by which one person gives to or receives from another person information about that person’s needs, desires, perceptions, knowledge, or affective states. In other words if you have a great idea, share it with the other person. If there is something you want to do that involves them or their content, call them or email them with your intentions. Sucker punches never feel good. Keep them in the loop.
If you have aspirations to be a great sales person no matter what you are selling it would be in your best interest to hone in on the above skills. There are many books, self help workbooks, CD’s and seminars to help you along the way. These tools are investments in your future. I encourage you to pursue them.
When things fall apart like a big contract or art sale, stop and do an autopsy on the entire process from the first phone call to the last email. Ask yourself some key questions such as: Did I communicate clearly with the other party? Did I give them as much information as I could to facilitate trust? Did I read their emails carefully and ask questions where there was uncertainty? Did I respond to their questions adequately? Did I validate them?
Today’s offering is “Clear Purpose”….fitting I think. 🙂
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I am interrupting my regularly scheduled blog to make a reflective post today. Yes, my blogs have been scheduled for the past two weeks because I felt it was more important to spend time with my husband, family and friends. I took an intermission. I scheduled rather than leave each day empty because I’ve had a lot to say in 2013 and I felt some bore repeating. From all of the great comments, retweets, shares and likes I have received, I know it was the right choice.
For me 2013 was an amazing year both personally and business wise. There were a lot of changes and in retrospect each of them were positive. Sure I made some mistakes, but there is no success without some failure.
One of the changes I made was to focus on marketing my prints. For years I resisted selling prints with the mistaken belief that it would somehow cheapen my original work. I have discovered the opposite to be true. While my prints sales continue to increase, the sale of originals remains steady at much more appropriate pricing. I no longer feel like I am under appreciated. I can live off my prints and create for the sheer joy of it without a single worry about selling originals or commission work. I can now explore photography and digital work with great passion that is undiluted by constant struggling for sales. This is a great place to be as an artist!
Personally, I have had to let go of some negative people who were keeping me from being my best. A few friends and even some family members no longer have a place in my inner circle. I am what they call “middle aged”…..And I find in this second half of my upcoming life that I plan on being a lot more selective than I have been in the past. Mistakes will be forgiven, but abuse will not be tolerated in any form. With this said, I have finally found a wonderfully small yet supportive group of artist friends who consistently promote my work, share experiences and send me love/support when needed. And I do the same for them. In 2013 I learned that with a better attitude, I can attract better friends. I have also renewed my relationships with my sister and brother and have found great friendship, love and support there as well. I celebrated 10 years with my wonderful husband in a romantic getaway that restored and invigorated us.
I have so much great work and camaraderie planned for 2014. Everything is in place for me to have the BEST year of my life!
My hope is that each of you reading this blog can reflect back on the passing year and see the good in all of your experiences. That even in the negative you can find the good lesson. I wish that each of you look to 2014 with optimism and grace. Happy New Year!
Should old acquaintance be forgot,
and never brought to mind…..