Artists need to eat, need shelter of their heads and at some point some indulgences in life too.. you know like a mobile phone and even a vacation here and there. Just because you’re an artist or a writer doesn’t mean that you have to be starving. It’s so important to consider the idea that creating art is as much a business as it is a creative outlet. When you’re thinking about selling your art, suddenly you now have a small business. And you have to think like a small business owner. Here’s a few things you need to consider when setting up your own small business.
1) Incorporation: You don’t actually need to setup an incorporated company, especially if you’re not really make that much since it ads some additional costs in terms of preparing taxes and the cost of incorporation. However, the benefits can outweigh the costs because of all of the tax deductions that you can make. Especially if you use a lot of exotic materials or rent or lease a studio. These are all expenses that can be tax deducted. There are quite a few resources regarding Incorporation, starting with the Canadian Government Incorporation website is probably the best way to learn.
2) Marketing: You can’t really sell your product, in this case your art if you don’t do any marketing. This means getting your work in Galleries, doing shows, social media, talking to those that can place your art in public areas so that you can get exposure. It’s incredibly important to think really hard about marketing distribution and have a solid grasp of expanding and building marketing channels. Reading up on the business of art making is a solid first step.
3) Business Insurance: If you are incorporating then purchasing commercial insurance is going to be pretty important to your business, especially to cover business risks like injury should a client slip and fall in your studio. Many artists don’t think about buying insurance for their new found art business but it’s worthwhile making that consideration while you’re building your small business. Artists are not risk managers so purchasing their insurance from a reputable commercial insurance broker will be a good idea.