The purposes of having a public account for promotion are:
- Network with other artists nationally and internationally via messaging, liking and sharing
- Network with galleries, art associations or arts societies
- Attract new people to follow your work.
- Keep people you know up to date with what you are doing with your work
- Promote events you are involved in
- Let others know your offering: sales, workshops ect
- Attract new people to your web site for more information
- Create and perpetuate your ‘brand’ (style, subject matter, colours and inspiration)
- Create an additional online folio
- Receive feedback on how popular your work is
- Show others, such as potential sponsors or galleries, that your work is popular with the public
- Research ideas and inspiration from your feed and save your favourite images to revisit later
The ‘instant’ real time concept and limitations of PCs with Instagram
The purpose of Instagram is to document and share images with followers shortly after you have done them. Thus, it is designed for use with mobile devices such is mobile phones and tablets. Though you are able to browse, follow and comment on PCs, You are not able to upload photos direct from your computer via the website. That is why we recommend you use a cloud storage (such as Dropbox, Google Drive or iCloud) to export and save your existing artworks to your mobile devices ‘Photo Library’ folder from where they can be uploaded. This way you can set up a folio immediately.
Curating on Instagram
Creating and managing an account on Instagram is sometimes referred to as ‘curating’. This is in that you are consciously selecting a group of high quality images that compliment each other and create an overall impression.
Here are some examples of popular and well curated accounts to check out:
Cindy Lane; Jane Blundell; Keikotanabewatercolor; Royalwatercoloursociety; Watercolorinlove; Winsorandnewtonau
When you look at these sites consider these questions:
- What is the purpose of the account? (HINT: Look at the summery as well as the images)
- Does their collection of works have a consistent look and feel? What key words come to mind?
- What do the images have in common?
- What type of content do they post?
Possible content to post:
- Best artworks
- The ‘romance’ of the life of the artist
- The magic of the materials we use
- Unveil the process
- Events you have been part of
- Unfinished, then finished works
- Multiple images in one post (layout app)
- Inspiration (photo or still life arrangement) and final creative product
- Materials you use (this can attract re-posts from marketing specialists from these brands)
Increase and keep your followers
- Use your contact list from your e-mail to get in contact with people you know
- Find and follow other people and organisations you have common interest with
- Find people and artists in your local community
- Be personal and authentic, comment and like others work
- Search and follow others interested in the same sort of art as you
- Post regularly, however; don’t sacrifice your quality for quantity
- Post when the northern hemisphere is awake, in particular USA and Europe
- Posts other than photos such as slide shows, videos (possibly timelapsed)
- Beautiful or interesting content
- Interesting personal or informal comments under the post
- High quality photos; natural light, no lens flares, clear image, no shake ect. (I use a proper camera transfer the images to my device before upload)
- Effective hashtags. One formula I tend to use is (title + media *+subject matter +style + location). You can also study the hashtags of other people promoting watercolours for ideas. I have a generic set I often use saved under the ‘notes’ application on my tablet which I copy and paste with each post. You can find lists of popular hashtags to match up with your posts on websites such as Tagblender