Time and again we see artists set up their site…load all their art, set prices, connect to Facebook and Instagram….and then forget to add biographical information. This is a mistake for a couple reasons.
Firstly, collectors love to know who they’re buying from. They’re not just buying piece of art, they’re investing in your career. Where you’re from, your inspiration, your training all add to your brand and add value to your work.
Secondly, the text on your site is actually more important than tags or keywords in attracting search engine traffic. You can use specific language that will help people find your work rather than anyone elses. Once you decide on a set of keywords for your site, you can work them into your Artist Statement using natural language.
You can spread your story over a couple of pages…you can have a CV/Bio page, an artist statement page, and an about page, to present the most complete picture in the most unique voice.
Cover the basics
Be sure to cover the basic biographical information…
- Where you’re from, where you’re based now (location can be very important in the identity of an artist.
- Where you studied—or if you didn’t! If being self-taught is part of your story, be sure to let us know
- Your achievements. Let us know about your awards and shows
- Your techniques and medium
- Your inspiration and influences
- Anything else that adds to your story
Use natural language
Most artist biographies are in the third person, as though written by a gallerist or collector of your work. If you’re more comfortable writing in the first person, that’s fine, too, just keep it consistent. Either way, use language that makes sense to you, use your natural voice. This will appeal more to the reader, and, increasingly, natural language is more likely to attract search engine traffic than stilted tags and keywords..
Make sure that the tone of your words matches the complexion of your work. If your work is quirky and playful, it’s ok if your language is too.
Write with confidence. Assume that people visiting your site like your work and want to buy it. Don’t make excuses or allow any doubts to creep into the text.
Have a couple different versions
You can have different versions of different lenghts on the various pages of your site. You can have a straightforward CV/Bio in list form for people trying to get a quick picture of your career. You can have a longer, more elaborate version on an Artist’s statement page, covering your inspirations and influences, and you can have something simple on an About page, which covers the basics about where you're from and what you do. This way people can pull from various pages of your site depending on their need.
Your words will make your work shine
You don’t have to explain your work to the viewer, but try to present your story in a way that helps the work make sense. Put your work in a context that adds to its appeal. You can retain a sense of mystery about your work and still give a version of your career that helps the viewer appreciate the complexity of your art.
Proofread your work
If your text is riddled with grammatical errors it will make it harder for people to take your art seriously. If editing text isn’t in your skillset, find someone to help you. Of email [email protected]. We’re happy to help you make the best version of your bio!