Your peepers are not deceiving you…. I may have stumbled upon an innovative new way for you guys to sell more of your wonderful work! (Well, let’s hope so...)
On a regular basis I keep a beady eye on what all the competition is doing up and down the country. Being a Facebook creep when you have a business is not something to look down your nose at! It’s good to have competition, it keeps you on your toes, and it makes you think differently, like ‘how could I do that better”. It definitely keeps you grounded and motivated, but I digress.
So while having a cheeky snoop I saw an advert about a Scottish company called Art Retail Network. Such a brilliantly simple idea; the main goal is to help artists sell their work, whether you’re a student or a professional. I’ve cut down the content and just put the important stuff in, so have a read and see what I’m blabbering on about.
They have a series of services including their website, workshops, and their art-viewing app ‘ActivCanvas’. Their website works to connect artists with galleries suited to their medium, subject, price range and experience. Artists can upload a profile and portfolio, which will be seen by hundreds of UK based galleries. Their app recognises any original artwork and triggers multi-media content specific to that artwork. It allows artists to connect directly with the people that love their work.
One key benefit of using the Art Retail Network is that galleries using the system are actively browsing for new artists and using search filters to generate the best match for both gallery and artist.
So how does it all work I hear you cry? When a gallery joins the website they complete a profile to find out their preferred mediums, artist type, price range and geographical preferences, and they're then initially matched with a list of 10 artists that best fit that profile. There is also a sample image rating system that is taken into consideration. Smart filtering and search engines are then at their disposal whenever they enter the system to search for artists.
That last part is a load of jargon, so I decided to download the app for myself to see what would happen, and it was pretty weird.
I was able to download the ‘Activcanvas’ app for free through the app store, and it asked to have access to my camera. I agreed as I guessed it wouldn’t let me continue if I selected no. It went straight into my camera app, and a scanner bar started moving up and down my screen. I assumed this was for "scanning" an image of whatever painting or drawing you place in front of it, so I pointed it at a flyer to see if it would take a picture. I held my phone there for around 2-3 minutes, but it still kept scanning without any sign finishing (at this point I’m thinking it is too good to be true after all). So I decided to visit their website and see what I was doing wrong.
As you can guess, I couldn’t actually access the website without creating an account (sneaky buggers) which is why (I assume) the app wasn’t working for me. Some sort of message on the app to tell you this first of all would’ve been helpful!
So that’s the first pointer for Art Retail newbies… Don’t download the app without creating an account on their website first! Well that’s what I’m assuming, because it wasn’t giving me much to work with.
I decided to go ahead an create an account using their website to show you how easy or difficult it would be. You can sign in using Facebook or you can create an account directly through them. I decided to create mine using their website; all you have to do is put in your email address and make a password for yourself.
There are three simple steps to creating your account through their website.
The first step is creating a profile for yourself. It asks all the general questions:
When you get signed up let us know how you get on!