First off, trying to find a gallery here in Vegas may not be very productive. I don’t know if your experience is different from mine, but the gallery scene in Vegas leaves a lot to be desired. There are galleries down in the arts district that hang stuff that looks like a kindergartner painter. Most of the galleries here are into modern art and self expression and your art (and mine) would not fit in them.
I know it’s tough to see other artists selling small works for multiple hundreds of dollars each when you can’t even get to $100 for a 6x6. Sometimes I feel the same way. For example, you see an artist like Abbey Ryan, who sold a 4x6" painting a few months ago for almost $2000, and it can drive you up the wall. I’m sure you (and I) would be happy with 10% of a price like that for small paintings. And there are a lot of other artists that can do the same thing, like Carol Marine, Julian Merrow-Smith, Karin Jurick, Duane Kaiser and more.
But, these artists have something that you and I haven’t achieved yet and that’s notoriety. Abbey’s been on Oprah a few times and has a huge following because of that. The other four have been in the daily painting movement since the beginning and have built up their followings. If Duane could be called the Father of the Daily Painting Movement, Karin would be the Mother. What I’m saying here is that they’ve been doing for so long and from the beginning that they have become the elite of the daily painting scene. Can we get there? Maybe. I don’t know. I’m not smart enough to have all those answers.
I do know that I am changing the way I do things. My daily painting practice is sliding a little because I am devoting more time to larger paintings, trying to get them ready for Vangoart and Saatchiart. I am finding that they take a lot longer, not because they are larger, but because I’ve changed my style of painting on them. Where a 6x6" painting might take me a couple of hours to finish, an 18x24", like the one on my easel right now is going to take me a couple of weeks at a couple of hours a day. No longer do I try to lay the paint on in one go. I just took a continuing education class at UNLV from Kelly Knox and he taught me the way of the old masters, of layering transparent paints on a canvas and building the painting in stages. These will NOT be sold on DPW in a $50 auction.
Maybe you just need to have a job that pays your bills and do your painting around that job. I know that sucks, but that’s when you find out what is important to you. Are you the kind of person that would come home after a long day on the job and park in front of the television for four hours before slogging off to bed, or are you the kind of person that would be running red lights to get home because you can’t wait to get a brush in your hands and do one small daily painting? If you did that five days a week that would be 260 paintings a year. Of course, if you were that kind of artist, you would be jonesing for the weekend so you could knock out 6-10 paintings on your days off.
Get yourself some 18x24" canvases and get some larger paintings done. If you can’t afford the canvases, I have a few stored in my studio that are just gathering dust, because of the time I’ve spent doing 6x6" paintings. I’d be willing to donate them to the cause just to get you to try those other websites. As for tax info to Saatchiart, all they ask for is a W-9, which any gallery is going to do. And don’t get caught up in timeframes at those two websites. I had my art up at Vangoart for over three months before I had my first sale.
I just hate to think that you’re going to give it all up. I look at some of your paintings and I am just mesmerized. I saw some of your small paintings with the colorful trees and wondered what those would look like at 18x24" or 36x48". Maybe it’s just time to aim at a different market.
And I’m sorry if this is a rambling piece. It’s six in the morning and I am not a morning person. Of course, I’m not a night person either.