Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Hints + Tips - Local and Online Communities

Picture of Sketch City by Nicole Tattersall

In a recent interview I did for the Blanket Magazine Blog I was asked 'You are very involved in your local art community and also online – which do you prefer and why?'. I love both and think that in today's environment you have to be apart of both, though I think that nothing compares to meeting people in person.
I've also been asked by friends of mine about how to be apart of art based activities, exhibitions and just be involved in the art community.

This all got me thinking, there are probably several more people out there wanting to be more involved in their local community and in online communities, just needing a little bit of direction of where to get started.

Being that I live in Melbourne the groups and events I refer to are in Melbourne, however you should be able to find similar groups in your own city/town, if not why not start one?

Business Cards
When you go to meet people, don't forget to bring along your business cards and if you don't have any, get some made up asap. This way people can remember you and if they feature your creations, also allows them to have a sneak peak at what you do.

Email/Ask/Call
If you have an artist friend who is up to date with what is going on in the creative world, shoot them an email, catch up for coffee or simply send an email asking if they know of anything that is going on and if there is nothing let them know that your keen if something comes up.
Also by letting people know that your looking to do things then they might also tell people, who will tell someone else.

Give
Let other creative people know when there are things on that they maybe interested, recommend them for things and be supportive, in turn others will do the same to you. For instance, I invited a good friend of mine who is a textile artist to come along to CWC (Creative Womens Circle) and in turn she invited me along to some design talks that she finds out about.
You can give also with your blog or twitter, feature other peoples exhibitions, online stores or even do an ad swap for your blogs.

Write
Write for another blog or site, when I have time I write for a Melbourne based website We Make Stuff Good. If you don't personally know the editors or organiser, send them an email with a link to your own blog and tell them what you would like to write about for their site. There are many positives to writing for a magazine or website, but one of the key positives is getting to know other people and other people getting to know you and what you do.

Mailing Lists
Signing up for mailing lists of galleries, stores, magazines or other such things will help you keep your finger on the pulse with what is going on and most of them will use these lists when sending out a call out to artists/creatives.

I hope these tips help you out, what is one of your favorite ways if keeping up to date with what's going on and being involved in the creative scene?

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