10 Best Ways to Sell Your Art Locally: Mega Guide

Home » How to Sell Your Art » 10 Best Ways to Sell Your Art Locally: Mega Guide

Kevin Hayler: Professional Wildlife artist, author, and traveler.

For most artists, myself included, it makes more sense to sell your art locally. Think about it. Why compete with the world? Isn’t it better to be a bigger fish in a smaller pond? I think so, it’s worked for me for over 20 years. Your potential buyers are right in front of you!

Sell Your art locally in local art galleries, art fairs, and exhibitions. Host an open studio, join a farmers market, or invest in a pop-up gallery. Find a street pitch, be an artist in residence, or start a workshop. Use local Facebook Groups and the local press to promote yourself.

In this post, I’ll show you 10 different ways to sell your art locally, plus I’ll tell you how to market yourself. This is practical advice. I have a lot to tell you, so let’s crack on. 

Disclaimer: When you buy something via my affiliate links I earn from qualifying purchases and sometimes earn a commission, at no extra cost to you. I am an Amazon Associate among others. I only recommend trusted sites.

If you wish to skip to any section, click on any header in the table.

Why Choose Local Art Sales?

Anyone who has read any of my previous posts will know the importance of building relationships with your potential customers. Art is sold for emotional reasons.

If interested buyers like you, they are much more likely to buy your art. It’s that simple. That’s relatively easy to achieve face-to-face, and very difficult to do online.

Selling locally is also a great way to do market research and gain reliable feedback. Once you know what makes people tick and how they react to your art, you can adjust your approach and make more art that meets their needs.

In other words, find something that sells and do more of the same. It’s not selling out, it’s making sales. 

Local artists have the additional advantage of being able to sell their original artwork without the costs and hassle of shipping. Believe me, this is no small thing.

While it’s true that online sales provide a broader reach, local sales ensure a deeper connection with your fans, more repeat purchases, and word-of-mouth referrals, which is gold dust in retail.

Knowing how to gently persuade an undecided customer is a skill you can learn. can show you how it’s done.

10 Ways To Sell Your Art Locally

There are many places to sell art. Wherever there are people, there are customers. You must think of the best places to get in front of as many people as possible.

Here are a few ideas to get you going:

1. Local Art Galleries

Pros of Selling in a Local Art Gallery:

  • Visibility and Credibility: Being featured in a local gallery can enhance an artist’s reputation and provide a stamp of approval from the art buying community
  • Targeted Audience: Galleries attract art enthusiasts and collectors, they have an existing mailing list of potential buyers
  • Professional Presentation: Galleries often have the expertise and resources to display art professionally and increase its perceived value
  • Sales Assistance: Galleries handle the sales process, presentation, and marketing, releasing you to create more art

Cons of Selling in a Local Gallery:

  • Commission Fees: Galleries typically take a percentage of the sale, typically 50% of the retail price
  • Limited Control: Artists have less say in how their work is displayed or priced. A gallery owner will know the limitations of the local market
  • Exclusivity Agreements: Most galleries may require artists not to exhibit in competing town venues
  • Consignment: Local artists will be expected to offer their original work for free on consignment (Sale or return). 
  • Potential for Unsold Work: Not all artwork will sell, and some gallery owners will ask for replacements or even adjustments to the art itself
  • Less Direct Interaction: While the art gallery handles sales, artists miss out on direct connections with buyers.

This post will interest you: How to Sell Your Art in Galleries: Is it Worth it? The Truth Told

2. Exhibiting in Local Art Fairs and Craft Shows

Local Art Fairs and Craft Shows:

Local art fairs and craft shows are community-centered events that provide artists with an opportunity to showcase their work to a hometown audience for a modest fee.

Read these posts too:

These events often have a cozy, intimate feel, allowing artists to engage directly with attendees, gather immediate feedback, and build lasting relationships.


  • Community Engagement: Local fairs foster a sense of community and allow artists to connect with local art enthusiasts and potential buyers.
  • Lower Costs: Participation fees for local events are typically more affordable than those for larger, regional or nationwide fairs, and without the waiting list.
  • Less Competiton: With a smaller pool of talent, your art has a greater chance to shine
  • Logistical Ease: Transporting artwork short distances reduces the risk of stock damage, decreases transportation costs, and eliminates the costs of accommodation.
  • Familiarity: Artists often have a better understanding of local tastes and preferences, allowing them to tailor their art to the local market (local scenes, etc)


  • Limited Reach: The audience size is generally smaller, often poorly advertised and poorly attended. 
  • Less Interesting: Local events usually lack the diverse range of artists and talent seen at larger fairs.

Regional and nationwide fairs attract a broader audience, including more serious art collectors, gallery owners, art dealers, and enthusiasts from far and wide.

These events offer greater exposure but it comes at a cost. There is usually a long waiting list for pitches, the logistics of attending are expensive, and the attendance fees are often outrageous.

Selling art made simple banner. Wanna sell your art?

3. Open House / Studio Gallery Trails

What is an Open House Event?

An open house or studio event is usually a yearly event where local artists open their doors to the viewing public.

In return for a modest fee, the artist joins an informal gallery trail, promoted by the organizers, and the public has fun following from one house/studio to another to get a glimpse into the artist’s world.

These events can be standalone showcases for individual artists, or they can be collective opportunities where local artists come together to rent a venue or space.

Participating in an Open House and Studio Gallery Trail in one’s town or locality can be a transformative experience for local artists. My friend opened his studio for the first time last year and now he’s a convert. They attract real enthusiasts and art lovers.

Who Attends Open Studio Events?

  • Art Enthusiasts and Collectors: Those with a passion for art attend to discover new artists, purchase unique pieces, or simply enjoy themselves in the creative atmosphere.
  • Fellow Artists: Other artists might visit to network, find ideas and draw inspiration.
  • Tourists: Curious visitors often attend to see community artists as a cultural event.
  • Locals: Many locals enjoy visiting other people’s homes as much as seeing the art

Benefits of Open Studio Events:

  • Direct Sales: Artists benefit from selling their artwork directly to customers, eliminating the need for local galleries and paying commission fees.
  • Selling Peripherals: An open house allows an artist to use their space to sell affordable merchandise relating to their art – greeting cards, art prints, T-shirts, etc.
  • Personal Connection: Artists have the opportunity to share their stories and make a deeper connection with potential buyers.
  • Build a Mailing List: Direct interaction with visitors provides valuable feedback and a comments book is an easy way to build a mailing list
  • Promotion: It’s an excellent opportunity for artists to promote upcoming exhibitions, workshops, or other events.
  • Networking: Artists can build relationships with other artists, gallery owners, and other professionals

4. Pop-up Art Exhibitions and Temporary Galleries

What are Pop-up Art Exhibitions and Temporary Art Galleries?

They are instant gallery outlets where artists exhibit their work in temporary vacant spaces such as empty retail stores, unused office buildings, or any other available premises with potential footfall.

Setting Up in Empty Premises:

  • Scout For a Good Location: Look for empty properties in areas with good foot traffic. An ideal position is on a busy high street. Contact the owners or agents and enquire about short-term lets at reduced rates or even for free.
  • Adapt Your Design: Transform the empty space into a gallery. This will involve the creative use of lighting, covers, and display stands. A presentable but makeshift display can add to the arty ambiance.
  • Promotion: Use social media, local press, a mailing list, and word-of-mouth to spread the word as quickly as you can. Have an opening event on the first Saturday and invite everyone, including passers-by.
  • Collaboration: Partner with other local artists and craftspeople to offer a varied exhibition. This can draw in a wider audience and make the experience more memorable.
  • Paperwork: Ensure you have the necessary contracts and insurance.


  • Flexibility: Artists aren’t tied down to long-term leases or commitments. It’s relatively low-risk
  • Cost-Effective: Using vacant retail spaces will give you access to a premium retail position for a bargain price. Artist co-operatives can reduce the rent further for individuals by pooling resources.
  • Unique Experience: The unconventional setting can make the art viewing experience more memorable for attendees, differentiating the event from exclusive and formal exhibitions.
  • Engage New Audiences: The novelty of pop-ups attracts art lovers who might not feel comfortable visiting traditional art galleries.
  • Revitalize Spaces: Pop-up exhibitions can breathe life into otherwise unused or overlooked areas, especially when the property owners see the benefit of drawing attention to their empty premises.

5. Selling Art in Restaurants and Local Coffee Shops

I would argue that anyone who promotes the idea of selling their art in a restaurant or coffee shop has never tried it.

On the face of it, it’s a fine idea. The proprietor feels good, gets free decor, and the artist gets to keep all or the bulk of the profits. It’s a pity that the public seldom buys art this way.

Personally, I wouldn’t sell original paintings in an eatery. Not only are they unlikely to sell, it means you must frame them properly and tie up your money in dead stock.

If you have some original pieces to sell and want to give it ago, I suggest you use plexiglass. If an accident happens, plexiglass is lightweight and will not shatter. 

You must bear in mind that eateries are in the business of selling food and drinks, they are not in the art business. Your artwork will hang without the staff knowing anything about them, nor how to sell them, even when someone shows interest. 

There’s more chance of selling your art as prints. If you can supply an art browser with packaged art prints ready to go you might find an owner or manager willing to help. 

With that said, the best way to sell your own art is to do it yourself. What if the coffee shop/eatery has a corner where you can sit and make your art? Perhaps they have a forecourt where you can set up outside? That’s the way to make money. Be there and meet people.

I have plenty of tips: How To Draw in Public: The Experience of an Artist

6. Retail Outlets

I write in a cafe every day, I have done so for a few years now. It is both a coffee shop and a retail gift shop combined. There are plenty of art prints for sale as well as greeting cards.

Pictures adorn the walls and I asked one of the girls here about how well the art sells and what type of art is popular. her reply was interesting.

She told me that they sell prints regularly and people like them framed and ready to hang. They prefer art that reflects the locality. That’s local scenes and quirky art that ties in with something about the town.

They also sell a lot of greeting cards that feature the town and surrounding landmarks.

She told me that they had just sold the large panorama of a famous local view that has been on display for the last year. It was attractive and I met the artist a while back. It looks like gouache at first glance, but it is in fact digital art. He signs and numbers his work and distributes them himself. 

His panorama sold for £400 retail. I was surprised that people will pay so much in a gift shop, then again, this isn’t a cheap place to grab a coffee either.

I don’t know what percentage the gift shop takes. Let’s say, for argument’s sake, that they take a standard gallery commission of 50%, that’s £200 for the artist, minus the framing costs, minus the large giclee print, minus the sales tax.

When the artist comes to juggling his tax at the end of the year, he will have to pay his tax on the profits, as you can see he has to pull out all the stops to make money. 

I know his business model. He’s thinking long-term. He has invested in prints that tie up his money initially, and he stocks them in multiple local outlets. That compensates for his slow turnover. Good on him, he has made it work. 

You need to read this post about printing: How to Make Prints of Your Art: A Complete Printing Guide (2023)

7. Local Farmer’s Markets

Local farmer’s markets have evolved beyond just venues for fresh produce; they’ve become vibrant community hubs where people gather not only for organic vegetables and artisanal cheeses but also for unique, handcrafted items, including art. 

These markets often reflect the ethos of supporting local talent and craftsmanship, making them a potential goldmine for artists.

The audience at farmer’s markets is distinct. These are individuals who value authenticity, quality, and the story behind the products they purchase. They are often more affluent customers, willing to pay a premium for items they perceive as unique, handcrafted, or locally-sourced. 

This mindset extends beyond just the food they buy. When they come across art pieces that resonate with them, they see not just the artwork but also the story, effort, and passion behind it.

For them, purchasing a piece of art is not just about owning an object; it’s about being part of the story.

The relaxed and open environment of a farmer’s market allows for genuine interactions where artists can engage directly with potential buyers, discuss their techniques, and even explain the inspiration behind specific artworks.

These personal connections are instrumental in influencing purchase decisions. A story shared over a market stall can turn a casual browser into a loyal fan.

This post goes into more detail: How to Build Trust With Customers: 6 Ways to Sell More Art

However, it’s essential for artists to be strategic. Not all art may be suitable for a farmer’s market audience. Pieces that reflect local themes, landscapes, or culture might resonate more with this crowd.

Selling art made simple - all the secrets revealed

8. Street Selling 

Selling your art on the street isn’t for everyone but as it has been my main source of income for 2 decades I could hardly leave it out could I? This stuff works, the street is a great place to sell certain types of art, especially prints. 

Pros of Selling Art on the Street:

  • Direct Selling: Selling art face-to-face allows for a personal connection with potential buyers and a better chance of making sales
  • Low Costs: Street trading is cost-effective. You get to keep all the profits
  • Mixed Audience: It gets you in front of people, including those who wouldn’t typically visit an art gallery. 
  • Impulse Buys: Street sellers sell cheaper items and rely on impulse buys from passers-by. It can be very lucrative.
  • Opportunity for Publicity: Even if sales aren’t made, the exposure can be beneficial for an artist’s brand and reputation.
  • Commissions: There is no better way to promote yourself and find commission work.

Check this out: How to Find Art Commissions: A Mega Selling Guide

street stall in Brighton

Cons of Selling Art on the Street:

  • Perception of Value: Displaying art on the street devalues the artwork in the eyes of potential buyers.
  • Legal Challenges: Selling art on the street may require licenses or permissions, and rules can vary by location.
  • Weather Dependency: Street artists are at the mercy of the weather, which can affect sales and the condition of the artwork.
  • Physical Logistics: Transporting, setting up, and taking down displays can be challenging, especially if the artist doesn’t have a vehicle.
  • Security Concerns: There’s a risk of theft or damage to artwork, and artists must be vigilant.
  • Inconsistent Income: Income can be unpredictable, with some days being highly profitable and others resulting in no sales.

Most people dismiss street art as an innocent hobby for artists who can’t make it in the art world. Little do they know that street trading can bring in more cash than selling through art galleries. It’s an excellent way to sell your art and if you can find a permanent pitch, can be a goldmine. 

This will help you out: How to Sell Art on The Street: By a Street Artist

Street selling involves a mindset shift, it’s not easy for most artists to transition. Street trading is life in the raw. There is no filter on the clientele. This is art for the masses and you have to learn to deal with every Tom, Dick, and Harry that comes your way. This is the very opposite of elitism and exclusivity.

9. Local Business Canteens and Staff Rooms

Local businesses, with their canteens, staff rooms, and waiting areas, present a unique opportunity for artists to showcase their work and make sales. Here are two effective methods to tap into this potential market:

Setting Up a Stall in the Canteen

This method involves setting up a temporary stall or booth in a company’s canteen during lunch hours or break times. Artists can display their original artworks, and art prints, plus offer custom commissions.

Steps to Implement:

  • Research Local Businesses: Start by identifying large local employers in your area. These could be corporate offices, factories, or any establishment with a significant number of employees.
  • Contact the HR or Admin Department: Reach out to the Human Resources or Administrative department to propose your idea. Explain the benefits, such as offering employees a unique opportunity to purchase or commission art.
  • Set Up: Once approved, set up your stall in a way that it’s visually appealing. Ensure you have a mix of artworks, from affordable prints to more premium pieces.
  • Engage with Employees: Be approachable and ready to discuss your work, the inspiration behind each piece, and the process of commissioning art.
  • Payment Solutions: Have a system in place to accept credit cards.

Leaving Portfolios in Staff and Waiting Rooms

Instead of direct interaction, this method involves leaving a portfolio or catalog of your art prints in staff rooms, waiting areas, or lounges. The portfolio should contain clear images of your artworks, prices, and detailed instructions on how to place an order.

Steps to Implement:

  • Create a Professional Portfolio: Design a visually appealing portfolio with high-quality images of your artworks. Ensure each piece is labeled with a unique identifier for easy ordering.
  • Include Order Details: Provide clear instructions on how to order a print. This could be through a website, email, or phone. Consider including an order form within the portfolio itself.
  • Local Businesses and Institutions: Approach local businesses, schools, clinics, government offices, and anywhere where large groups of people wait, or take a break. Emphasize the non-intrusive nature of this method and how it can provide value to employees or visitors by offering them a chance to discover and buy art, for themselves, or as a unique gift.
  • Return: Periodically update the portfolio to include new artwork and return to the places that responded positively, especially before Christmas.

Benefits of Selling in Local Businesses:

  • Targeted Audience: Employees or visitors in a business setting are often looking for ways to relax or take a break. Art can provide that respite and a talking point.
  • Less Competition: Unlike crowded art fairs or online platforms, there’s no competition in a business setting.
  • Building Relationships: This method allows artists to build relationships with local businesses, which can lead to other opportunities like corporate commissions or event invitations.

10. Artist in Residence

An “Artist in Residence” program typically involves an artist working within a specific environment, institution, or community for a set period. This allows the artist to create, showcase, and often teach or engage with the public, while potentially drawing inspiration from the unique setting.

Such programs can be mutually beneficial: the artist gains exposure, sales, and new experiences, while the hosting institution or community gets to enrich its environment and offer its members or visitors a unique cultural experience.

This post will tell you more: 19 Places to Sell Art: 3 Offline and 16 Etsy Alternatives

Lucrative Places for an Artist in Residence:

Local Hospitals

  • Benefits for the Artist: Hospitals offer a unique environment where art plays a therapeutic role. The artist can attract a large audience with a large workforce and a high turnover of new faces constantly passing through. Plenty of scope for selling unique gifts and greeting cards
  • Benefits for the Hospital: Art can have therapeutic effects on patients, reducing stress and aiding in recovery. It can also provide a respite for overworked staff and make the environment more welcoming.

Local Hotels

  • Benefits for the Artist: Hotels, especially luxury or boutique ones, can offer artists an international audience. The artist can draw inspiration from the local architecture and surrounding landmarks. Luxury souvenir market.
  • Benefits for the Hotel: Having an artist in residence can elevate a hotel’s brand, making it stand out as a unique cultural destination. Guests get an exclusive experience, and the art created can become a permanent asset for the hotel.

Local Visitor Attractions

  • Benefits for the Artist: Places like museums, historical sites, or botanical gardens can provide a rich tapestry of inspiration. The artist can interact with a diverse group of visitors, from locals to international tourists. 
  • Benefits for the Attraction: An artist in residence can enhance the visitor experience, making it more interactive and memorable. It can also lead to the creation of exclusive merchandise or artworks that can be sold or displayed.
Selling Art Made Simple Banner. Keep all the Profits

6 Ways to Promote Your Art Locally

1. Use The Local Press

Local media are desperate for local stories. They haven’t got the resources to seek out news and they rely on people coming to them with fresh content. As far as they are concerned it’s the easiest way to create cheap copy. 

Consider promoting yourself in these ways:

  • Press Releases: Whenever there’s a significant event or achievement, such as a new exhibition or award, draft a concise press release with high-quality images and send it to local media outlets. Ensure the content is newsworthy and relevant.
  • Local Features and Profiles: Approach local newspapers and magazines to profile your art business. Emphasize what sets your art apart and its impact on the community. This can provide in-depth coverage and personal connection with readers.
  • Event Listings: Ensure all your art-related events, like exhibitions, workshops, or open studios, are listed in local media event calendars. This provides visibility and invites the community to engage with your work.
  • Interviews: Offer to be interviewed on local radio shows, TV programs, or in print. Share insights about your art process, personal anecdotes, and discuss any upcoming events or launches. This positions you as an accessible and relatable figure in the art world.
  • Engage with Journalists: Foster relationships with local journalists and editors. Personal connections can lead to more frequent and favorable coverage. Keep them updated about your milestones, and invite them to your events.

By focusing on these five strategies, local artists can effectively leverage the press to gain visibility, engage with the community, and promote their art business.

2. Join Your Local Arts Communities

Being a part of your local arts community can be a game-changer for artists looking to promote their artwork. 

Here’s how joining these art communities can be beneficial:

  • Networking Opportunities: Local arts communities often host events, meetings, and workshops. Attending these allows you to meet other artists, gallery owners, and other industry professionals. Building these relationships can lead to collaborations, exhibitions, and subsequent sales.
  • Shared Resources and Knowledge: Established artists or community members often have insights into local market trends, promotional strategies, and local opportunities. By being part of the community, artists can tap into this collective knowledge and experience, which can be invaluable for newcomers looking to expand their reach.
  • Group Exhibitions: Many local arts communities organize group exhibitions or art events. Participating in these events provides artists with a platform to showcase their work to a broader audience. It’s easier than going it alone.
  • Collaborative Projects: Joining forces with fellow artists for collaborative projects can lead to more attention than going solo and artists can tap into each other’s audiences.
  • Local Media Attention: Local arts communities often have connections with local media. Being an active member can increase an artist’s chances of being featured in local newspapers, magazines, radio shows, or TV segments.
  • Skill Development: Many arts communities offer workshops, classes, and critiques. These can help artists refine their skills, learn new techniques, and get feedback on their work.
  • Grants: Many organizations offer grants or funding opportunities for local groups as opposed to independent artists
  • Moral Support: The journey of an artist can be filled with highs and lows. Being part of a community provides a support system of peers who understand the challenges and can offer encouragement, advice, or simply a listening ear during tough times.
  • Increased Credibility: An association with a reputable local arts community can enhance an artist’s credibility. It signals to potential buyers and art galleries, that the artist is serious about their art.
  • Access to Local Spaces: Arts communities often have information or access to local spaces suitable for workshops, exhibitions, or studios. This can save artists time and resources in finding ideal locations for their needs.
  • Advocacy: Many arts communities advocate for artists’ rights, funding, and recognition at a local or even national level. Being part of such a community ensures that artists have a collective voice that can lobby for beneficial policies or initiatives.

3. Use Local Facebook Groups to Market Your Art and Services

You can’t ignore social media, even locally. Facebook offers a blend of community engagement and marketplace functionality.

Here’s how local artists can harness the power of local Facebook Groups:

  • Join Local Facebook Groups: Many towns and communities have local art groups where members share their work, discuss techniques, and promote local art events. Joining these groups can help artists connect with a like-minded audience.
  • Engage Actively: Simply posting art isn’t enough. Engage with other members by commenting on their posts, participating in discussions, and offering constructive feedback. This builds rapport and makes your posts more visible.
  • Use High-Quality Images: A clear, high-resolution image can make your artwork stand out. Consider using multiple shots, including close-ups to show detail and a picture of the artwork in a staged environment, like a living room.
  • Use High-Quality Images: A clear, high-resolution image can make your artwork stand out. Consider using multiple shots, including close-ups to show detail and a picture of the artwork in a staged environment, like a living room.
  • Share Your Process: Instead of just showcasing finished pieces, share behind-the-scenes content. Time-lapse videos of your art process or stories about what inspired a particular piece can engage viewers and make them more invested in your work.
  • Engage with Potential Buyers: Respond promptly to inquiries. Be open to negotiations but set clear boundaries on pricing. Offer insights into the artwork when interacting to make it more personal.
  • Promote Workshops or Classes: If you offer art classes or workshops, local groups are a great place to advertise. Ensure your posts are informative and highlight the benefits of attending.
  • Promote Other Services: If you offer custom commissions or other services, list them. This can attract a different set of clients who might not be looking for ready-made art.
  • List Artworks for Sale: If the Facebook group rules forbid direct selling, use FB Marketplace. List your art prints with clear photos, detailed descriptions, and pricing. Ensure you categorize them correctly to reach the right audience. 

You can save money by buying this huge bundle of Digital Marketing courses by

4. Public Art Grants For Local Artists

Public art grants are financial aids provided by governmental bodies, foundations, and organizations to support artists in creating public art. These grants can be instrumental in funding projects, expanding an artist’s reach, and contributing to the cultural enrichment of a community. 

Many local governments offer grants to promote art in public spaces. Check the official websites of your city or county for information on available grants. National and regional arts organizations often have grant programs specifically for public art.

Where to Find Art Grants

Readers in the US can find information on art grants from these sites:

National Endowment for the Arts (NEA)

  • Website: National Endowment for the Arts
  • Overview: The NEA is an independent federal agency that funds, promotes, and strengthens the creative capacity of communities by providing diverse opportunities for arts participation. They offer grants for organizations, individuals, and partnerships in various artistic disciplines.

New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA)

  • Website: New York Foundation for the Arts
  • Overview: While NYFA is based in New York, it provides a comprehensive database of opportunities and grants available nationwide. Their “NYFA Source” is one of the most extensive national online directories for artists of all disciplines, offering information on awards, grants, residencies, and more.


  • Website: GrantWatch
  • Overview: GrantWatch is a comprehensive online platform that lists various grant opportunities across the United States. The website categorizes grants by type, making it easier for artists and other professionals to find opportunities specific to their needs. It covers a wide range of grants, including those for the arts, education, community development, and more. The platform is updated regularly, ensuring that users have access to the latest grant opportunities available.

Readers in the UK can find information on art grants from these sites: 

Arts Council England (ACE)

  • Website: Arts Council England
  • Overview: ACE is the national development agency for creativity and culture in England. They provide funding for artists, museums, and libraries. Their website offers detailed information on various grants, eligibility criteria, application processes, and deadlines. They support a wide range of artistic disciplines, from visual arts and theatre to literature and music.

The National Lottery Heritage Fund

  • Website: The National Lottery Heritage Fund
  • Overview: This fund provides support for projects that connect people and communities to the national, regional, and local heritage of the UK. While it’s primarily focused on heritage projects, many art projects that intersect with cultural or historical heritage can find funding opportunities here.

A-N The Artists Information Company

  • Website: A-N The Artists Information Company
  • Overview: a-n offers a range of services to support artists’ practice, including news, jobs, and event listings. One of their valuable resources is the “Funding and Finance” section, which provides information on available grants, bursaries, and other financial opportunities for artists in the UK.

Understand The Grant Criteria

  • Each grant will have specific criteria. This could relate to the theme of the artwork, the materials used, the location, or the intended audience. Ensure you fully understand what’s required before applying.
  • Some grants might be specific to certain groups, such as emerging artists, artists from minority backgrounds, or artists working with specific mediums.

Prepare a Strong Grant Proposal

  • Concept: Clearly articulate your art concept, its significance, and how it aligns with the grant’s theme or objectives.
  • Budget: Provide a detailed budget that outlines how you’ll use the grant money. This should include costs for materials, labor, transportation, installation, and any other relevant expenses.
  • Visual Aids: Include sketches, mock-ups, or digital renderings of the proposed artwork.
  • Impact Statement: Describe the potential impact of your artwork on the community, its relevance, and its longevity.

Attend Workshops or Information Sessions

Some grant providers offer workshops or information sessions for potential applicants. These sessions can provide insights into what the grant committee is looking for and offer tips on creating a successful application.

Network Locally

Engage with local art communities, attend public art events, and connect with artists who’ve previously received grants. They can offer valuable advice and might even provide feedback on your proposal.

Utilize The Grant Effectively

  • Once you receive a grant, ensure you use the funds as outlined in your proposal. Misusing funds can lead to penalties and might affect your chances of receiving future grants.
  • Document the creation and installation process. This not only serves as a record for the grant provider but can also be used for promotional purposes.

Acknowledge The Grant Provider

  • Always acknowledge the grant provider in any publicity related to the artwork. This could be in press releases, plaques next to the artwork, or in any promotional material.

5. Optimise For Local SEO

Optimizing for local SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is a good idea for businesses that serve a specific geographic area. If you have a physical business premises you are missing out by ignoring local SEO.

It helps ensure that when potential customers in your area search for local services or products related to your business, your business appears prominently in the search results. 

Google My Business (GMB) Listing

Here’s how you can optimize local SEO for your art business:

  • Claim and Verify: Start by claiming your Google My Business listing. Once claimed, ensure you verify it.
  • Complete Your Profile: Fill in all the details, including business name, address, phone number, business hours, and categories. Ensure this information is consistent across all online platforms.
  • Add High-Quality Photos: Include images of your storefront, products, services, and team.
  • Collect Reviews: Encourage satisfied customers to leave positive reviews on your GMB listing. Respond to these reviews, both positive and negative, in a professional manner.

The following listing tips are important:

  • Optimize for Mobile: Ensure your website is mobile-friendly. Many local searches are conducted on mobile devices, so having a responsive design is crucial.
  • Local Keywords: Incorporate local keywords into your website content, meta descriptions, and title tags. For instance, if you run a local gallery in Boston, “Boston Gallery” or “best Art in Boston” could be potential keywords.
  • Local Content: Create content that resonates with your local audience. This could be blog posts about local events, partnerships with local businesses, or guides related to your industry but tailored to your locality.
  • Local Link Building: Engage with local businesses, bloggers, or news websites to earn backlinks. This could be through partnerships, guest posts, or being featured in local directories.
  • Your Contact Details: Ensure your Name, Address, and Phone number (NAP) are consistent across all online platforms, directories, and social media profiles.
  • Utilize Local Directories: List your business on reputable local directories like Yelp and any other popular local directories. Ensure your details are accurate and consistent.
  • Engage on Social Media: Engage with your local community on platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Share local news, participate in local events, and use location tags in your posts.
  • Schema Markup: Use schema markup (structured data) on your website to provide search engines with more information about your business, like the services you offer, reviews, and more.
  • Manage and Respond to Reviews: Actively manage reviews on all platforms, not just GMB. Responding to reviews shows you value feedback and can influence potential customers.

When done right, local SEO will boost your business’s visibility in local search results, driving many more customers to your gallery or website.

Have you got a website? If not, you really need one. Do what I did and follow a step-by-step guide

These guys have insanely popular courses on .
If you need a guiding hand this course will help you immensely

6. Leverage Your Friends and Family

Why wouldn’t you ask your greatest fans to spread the word? Your family and friends are your best ambassadors so use them. 

Don’t believe me? This is what Zuckerberg had to say:

“People influence people. Nothing influences people more than a recommendation from a trusted friend”

Mark Zuckerberg

I think he knows a thing or two. 

So what can they do? Sure they will buy one or two bits and pieces (usually for mates rates) but that’s not what I mean. They will market your art for you and that will lead to more sales and more profit.

Ask them to take a portfolio of your art prints to work with them. They can take orders and deliver the prints the following day. It’s best to strike when the iron is hot.

I’ve done this, it works wonders.

Ask your friends to share your posts and links on social media. This will have a snowball effect if you ask your friends to ask their friends to share it too. Make sure there is a trail back to you and your website along the thread.

How to Sell Your Art Locally: Final Thoughts

People will warn you that artists don’t make money, they don’t realize that 20% of all businesses fail within the first year, 30% by year two, and half by year 5. (source)

Artists have the same issues as every other business, what sets artists apart is their common belief that art sells itself. That’s crap. You have to get out there and find customers. It’s like any other business, it’s hard work. 

There are many ways to make money from your art, the hardest, in my opinion, is to try and sell originals for a living. It can be done, but few succeed.

There are two obvious markets for original artwork, high-end and low-end, it’s very hard to find a middle ground.

High-quality art takes time and must be priced accordingly. The turnover is painfully slow and the target market is hard to reach.

On the flip side, cheap art must be quick and formulaic, it’s gimmickry, and has no artistic merit. It’s factory art. It’s almost impossible to hit on a profitable middle way. 

So what can you do? The answer is to sell reproductions, take commissions, or teach classes. These are your viable business options as a local artist.

l advise you not to rely on selling originals, instead, your focus should be on your prints and merchandise, with occasional commissions and workshops. Selling an original is a lovely bonus. 

Start small and grow slowly. Your aim is to build a loyal fan base and cultivate a community of people around you and your art. It’s perfectly possible to be a professional artist if you have the right approach. 

This is how I made a living for over 20 years. You can too, simply copy what I did – No hidden secrets

Selling art made simple digital guide for starting a small art business

If You Want to Sell Your Art

Check this out!

Psst…it’s only $12.99!

These posts will also interest you:

Keep in Touch

* indicates required

If you need some help with licensing and what it’s all about, this is a popular course by Alison Cole on Domestika

The artist and Author Kevin Hayler

Hi, my name’s Kevin and I’m a real person!
I’ve been selling my wildlife art and traveling the world for over 20 years, and if that sounds too good to be true, I’ve done it all without social media, art school, or galleries!
I can show you how to do it. You’ll find a wealth of info on my site, about selling art, drawing tips, lifestyle, reviews, travel, my portfolio, and more. Enjoy

Leave a Comment

The reCAPTCHA verification period has expired. Please reload the page.