Mailing Lists: Overcome Self-Promotion Discomfort

Mailing Lists: Overcome Self-Promotion Discomfort


Self-promoting is too…much. I am uncomfortable with it.

Our current culture tells us that it’s not okay to “brag” or “outwardly promote ourselves”.  We feel like we appear “too full of ourselves”, which can come across as needy, pushy, or generally unattractive.

There is a balance to this.

  • Only promote yourself to people who are interested in hearing more.
  • Consider that what you are offering is informational. You are sharing information with people who are already interested in what you are doing.

We have deliberately built your mailing lists with people you already know and with whom you’ve already worked. The people you have on your lists already know you. But they don’t know the specifics.

You need to tell them when you have a new class or if you have a book signing. How else will they know what you are offering?

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Poster: Sponsor Thank You

This poster was a challenge. It was a “thank you” poster(18″ x 24″) which every sponsor would receive. The sponsors did not require any photos or other images, so the visual was up to me.

It just so happened that I had been reading about visual geometry that one frequently finds in nature. I decided to look up the Golden Spiral, a visual geometric representation of the Fibonacci numerical sequence. I created an actual Golden Spiral, but having just that on the poster, seemed rather plain.

What about some color? I had two ideas: One was to color my spiral in a fashion that would reference Piet Mondrian, a Dutch artist. The second was the one I chose, to model my spiral after an outer space scene. I chose the second option, which you see above.

Presentation: A Working Artist

photo (22)Last Saturday, I gave a small presentation to a local Girl Scout Troop. The Girl Scouts, aged 8 and 9, were pursuing a Drawing badge and a Business Owner badge. I was asked to present as a working woman artist.

Picking out parts of my art life that might be interesting to young girls, I spoke briefly about How I Started Drawing, How I Came Up With An Idea For My Business, and What Do I See For The Future, artistically?

A clip from my presentation

When I was a little younger than you were, my Mom took me to see “Bambi” in the movie theater. Does everyone know what movie I’m talking about?

(Nods of yes and interjections of other movies they know.)

Well, I will never forget that movie. I thought it was so beautiful. I looked up at my Mom and said, pointing to the screen, “Mom, I want to do THAT”. She looked down at me, frowning slightly. “You want to be a baby deer?”*

And yes, they laughed.

“Moomm, nooooo!” I tossed my head and rolled my eyes. “I want to work on movies like that.”

Well, what is that called? An animator.

And everyone I asked said, “Well, if you want to be a good animator, you need to know how to draw and to draw really well.” And so I drew. And I drew and I drew. I became an art major in school. I took lessons. I read books. And I have a lot of sketchbooks. I draw and paint every day. And (so I don’t sound like a workhorse), I really LOVE IT so much!

I mentioned that little did I know, that by drawing all the time, I was creating a foundation to do just about anything visual.

Around 6 years ago, I had moved back to Maryland where my family lives. I needed a job. The economy was tough at that time and as a result, too many people couldn’t find work. So, some of those people decided to branch out and form their own businesses.

I asked myself, like those people, what skills do I have that other people need? I asked the Girl Scouts to imagine that if they were thinking about setting up their own business, what kind of marketing materials would they need? (They had spoken about this in their last Troop Meeting). A business card, a brochure, a postcard, a poster, maybe a website? Well, I can do that! I have those many years of drawing to thank.

As for what I see in the future, artistically? I notice combinations of hand-painted work and digital computer work or combinations of hand-painted work in the place of computer design. Occasionally, a graphic design client will find out that I draw or paint, so they ask me to illustrate something for their project. And others who enjoy my illustrations, ask me to use an image in a marketing piece. This is fun for me!

I ended saying that if any of the Girl Scouts were thinking about a career in the arts, find out what they want to do and just do it. Don’t do it half-heartedly. Do it the very best that you can!

Good luck!

*My mother never said that. She knew what I meant and supported me wholeheartedly.