Under Pressure

I just want to talk about how much pressure there is for artists in and around the holidays, even from inside our own communities.

Every platform that I work with pressures me to create sales for consumers in this capitalist-driven country. Every year, since I've been doing this, weeks before Halloween even, I am inundated with "start thinking about your customers' holiday shopping now!" kinds of messages. My dropship company sends me a checklist and reminders of the checklist for all of the things I need to be doing to prepare to slash the prices on things I barely make any money from in the first place. My website wants to keep me updated with newsletter layouts promoting my holiday sales and sends me tips for marketing those sales.

But within the art community there is a lot of pressure to not do sales. This pressure I understand. I have received messages from [I wouldn't necessarily call them] collectors saying that X artist is having a christmas sale so could I just mark down X painting by X dollars for them. Sure, let me take my carefully calculated amount of how much my work is worth and slice it in half to suit your needs. If we decide to mark down our paintings other artists are stuck with messages like the one above, leaving our friends and peers in horrible situations.

If I sound a little bitter about it, it's because I am. Small businesses--and by that I mean when it's one person making goods or providing services without the umbrella of a much larger corporation like Avon--are the last people who should be marking down their content. The price struggle is a real one. We put so much work into figuring out what our prices should be to begin with. Most of us don't even pay ourselves.

Look, I know I'm the last person who should be writing about marking down paintings and thus putting my friends in a situation where they feel like they should lower their prices, because of the stunt I pulled earlier in the year. But the pressure to sell is extreme... and part of the reason I get so sick of marketing to the point I want to walk away from it all. So if you're going to listen to anyone about it, listen to me.

Keep a lookout on my Instagram stories for small business recommendation!

<3 The Pop Art Girl

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