The Creative Hub by the Printspace put together a really useful guide in the different ways to show and promote work (2020). I am going to attempt to analyse these approaches compared to what I have already done and what I could to towards them. My notes are numbered in red.
|Budget of £0 – £250||Instagram 1||Website 2||Magazine/Blog Feature 3|
|Cost:||£0||£120- £250 per year (if using a template)||£0|
|Time to Launch:||1 week||1 month||Depends on publisher|
|Post Launch:||7 – 20 hours per week||4 hours per week||Dependent on the reach of the feature|
|Getting Noticed:||Make interesting content and engage with other users, which will organically build your following||Improve SEO blogging and regularly refreshing content. Link to your site from all from all social accounts||Share/Publish the feature on all your social media accounts|
|Key Tasks:||– Making interesting & original content|
– Post scheduling
– Engagement with other users
|– Domain registration|
– Logo & corporate identity design
– Choosing & adapting site template
– Set meta tags & meta descriptions for pages
-Choose SEO friendly URLs
|– Find publications that suit your work|
– Create press package, email, supply images in correct format
– Ensure your website is working for when people click through
- Instagram: Having run an instagram account for quite a few years, I find it quite challenging to maintain the level of consistency and sustained approach to sharing and commenting. I understand that this is important and do maintain my presence on the platform
- I have found that when i was freelancing that platforms, such as Linkedin are far more valuable for building a focussed interest in my work as i am sharing it with professionals who have a vested interest in seeing what I can do
- That being said, Instagram feels much more accessible and is an important part of getting my work in front of audiences
- Website: My website is a self hosted WordPress site after many years of running template sites, I actually enjoy the flexibility of WordPress. However, consistency in the presentation, although might be considered dull and formulaic, is useful for clients and editors who would easily navigate the work knowing the formula of Squarespace et al.
- Maintaining my website in this way is flexible but also much more cost effective than using a template site. My running cost for my own site is roughly a third of what Creative hub is suggesting. Not including the recent update to my website that included a custom theme, which was the first time that I invested in a premium version.
- The downside of running this myself is that I must invest much more time in the setting up and really research SEO techniques (which I still have much to do).
- Blogs/Magazines: In addition to the promotional side of sending work to be shared and reviewed. I am also keen to pitch my work for syndication and publication, which would also mean payment to me. This of course, is how I would operate as an editorial freelance. That said, there is an expectation that I would need to share work for free in certain circles in order to generate the interest required for paid opportunity.
- In order to make my work more valuable to publishers it is also worth creating written work in support of my photography.
- Also worth considering any secondary markets for the work to make it as accessible as possible outside the usual photographic channels.
|Budget of £250 – £1,250||Printed Portfolio 4||Zine 5||Group Exhibition 6|
|Cost:||£300 – 700||£500 – 1,250||£250 – 1,000|
|Time to Launch:||2 – 4 weeks||3 – 6 months||2 – 4 months|
|Post Launch:||2 – 4 hours per week||4 – 6 hours per week||10 – 15 hours per week during show. 5 – 10 hours following up interest after|
|Getting Noticed:||Attending portfolio reviews & festivals. Meetings with agents/ art buyers/creative directors/marketing/creative agencies||Having a launch. Selling online & getting reviewed blogs/magazines||Promoting the event extensively across social media, press reach-outs, emailing invites, posting out printed invites|
|Key Tasks:||– Confirm edit|
– Print test strips
– Choose paper
– Choose presentation method
– Arrange reviews/meetings
|– Confirm edit|
– Write copy
– Research print/bind methods
– Design layout
– Print/bind final version
|– Space hire|
– Private view/refreshments
– PR: marketing/press/social media
- Printed Portfolio: I am thinking at this stage of the MA, that I am not in a position to have a completed printed portfolio. I am a proponent of a well presented printed portfolio and am keen to pursue this in the future for the FMP.
- I already own a box for presenting prints, for example (Fig: 1). The argument for allowing readers to construct their own narratives from my work supports this method of printing and presenting work. They are also useful to spread prints out and see how they might work together – An important consideration for clients.
- I also have a courier case, which is useful to protect the box and send it out to potential clients. This might include: publishers, galleries and other potential audiences for my work without necessarily having to spend the time travelling around myself. The more traditional method of getting work out there.
- Portfolio reviews can be quite costly and it is really important to only attend those that represent value for money. Better value would be to really research potential clients and buyers of my work and set up meeting with those people instead.
- A downside of this method is the need to replace prints as they are frequently handled, which would be a concern of a blurb style book and folder style folio, however print sleeves might circumvent this.
- In terms of what might represent the most value for money in presenting work, this might be the best in time and money spent, over a book dummy for example. it also allows others to see sequences in the work that will work for them.
- Zine: I produced a zine collaboratively during the task in week 3 and learned some really valuable lessons in the production and printing. Primarily in the setting up and compromises required. Taking on board these lessons, I have also produced a zine to support my Landings exhibition.
- What could be quite useful about zines is the ability to make a self published object that I can then sell myself. The main challenges is the initial outlay of this can be quite costly, especially when I do not have the £500 stated by Creativehub above.
- To truly make a success of self published zines, it would be useful to already have an established audience, which is where platforms like Instagram would be useful.
- For Landings, I have produced a short run of 20 zines (the minimum required by The Newspaper Club for printing).
- Even if I do not manage to sell any copies of my zine, they can become a useful promotional tool to send out to potential audiences of my work.
- I can also submit the zine to the ‘Self Publish be Happy’ library.
- Group Exhibition: Not something that I have lots of experience with outside of an academic setting. That said, the Landings 2020 experience will be useful to understand the process and potentially see how disparate bodies of work can be curated together.
- Additionally, all of the work that I am carrying out towards the creation of my own zines and website updates will support creating promotional material for group shows in the future.
|Budget of £1,250 +||Solo Exhibition. 7||Art Fair. 8||Book. 9|
|Cost:||£1000 – 7000||£3,500||£5000+|
|Time to Launch:||3 – 6 months||1 – 3 months||6 – 12 months|
|Post Launch:||40 – 60 hours per week during show, 20 hours following up interest after||12 hours a day during the show, 20 hours following up interest after||8 – 20 hours per week|
|Getting Noticed:||By promoting the event extensively across social media, press reach out and direct email||Good presentation, understanding the type of attendees to the fair, following up diligently on interest||Having a launch, finding stockists, entering book awards, attending publishing fairs, selling online, getting reviews|
|Key Tasks:||– Space hire|
– Private view/refreshments
-PR: marketing/press/social media
– Create show catalogue
– Set up print sales; online and in the space
|– Design & curate the space|
– Create catalogue and takeaways for attendees (e.g. postcards)
– Setting up digital capture of details
– Set up point of sale terminals
|– Create edit, produce dummy|
– Get text written
– Final edit
– Research printing techniques
This block is potentially a bit beyond me at the moment due to financial and where a solid audience will need to be created in order to justify some of these.
- Solo Show: There are opportunities to exhibit work in venues that do not cost as much as this, or would even be free for a percentage of any sales. The compromise would potentially be in the location of such venues however.
- promotion would inevitably still cost money to produce the materials necessary.
- Many of the options that have been outlined above might also need to be put in place before I am in a position to be able to put on a solo show.
- Art Fair: This is another one that I am fairly new to. It could present a good opportunity to build an audience for my work if the right fair was selected. Quite risky with the budget that CreativeHub suggests.
- Book: Book publishing is an interesting one. As I understand it, if you even manage to secure the interest of a publisher, you might still have to put together a substantial investment of money in order to realise the book.
- There are a number of dummy book awards and Mack’s for example is free to enter.
- As I work for an FE college, there are a good amount of facilities to help me realise a book dummy should I wish to pursue that in order to keep the costs down
- Sequencing is vital for the success of the book as it could be easily overlooked.
Creative Hub, 2020. How to Show your Work. London: Printspace Studios Limited.