2K14 Art Marketing Tips

"The Lost Horizon" 36" x 36" acrylic on gallery wrapped canvas $3240
"The Lost Horizon" 36" x 36" acrylic on gallery wrapped canvas $3240

Success is neither magical or mysterious.  Success is the natural consequence of consistently applying the basic fundamentals.~Jim Rohn



Art 2K14 was my third art challenge in a row. I am still learning about myself, my art and the business of marketing as I complete each challenge. My focus was to continue to paint 15,000 to 20,000 square inches for the year, but my biggest focus and challenge was to market and sell more art. It turned out to be a very successful year. In fact, my 2K14 sales was 4 x's the amount that I sold the first challenge, as I consecutively doubled each year. I would like to share some of the things I learned this year and perhaps you can tell me what worked for you this year.


If you don’t make your art public and available for your customers to see your sales will be random.

Out of site out of mind.

Not every venue is the best venue for your work.

You need to know who your customers are.

The more you try different venues, restaurants, country clubs, wineries, galleries, etc. the easier it will be to find out what is more effective and productive for sales.

Build a relationship with your customers and reward them for being your customers.

Great customers love your work and are great promoters of your work, use it to your benefit and their benefit.

Brainstorm and be creative with new ideas and venues for your art.

If a venue was very successful, try to line up the next year with duplicate venue that can either be the same or evolve into something bigger.

It's important that your art is sold by people who love your work.  

Keep in contact with your customers, through newsletters, email, snail mail or visits; let them know what you are up to.

Remember your customer’s taste. When you paint something you know they would like, personally contact them and give them first choice.

Make sure you know what your dollar goal is for the year. Keep track of your sales monthly, to figure out your pace for the year.

If you succeed your goal, please keep up the momentum and take advantage of the sales.

Sales come in spurts.

Always be building inventory because without inventory there is no sales.

Have a variety of art to fit all your customer’s needs.

Make sure you save enough of your money from your sales to cover your supplies and extra costs.

Be willing to invest in high quality materials, including framing; your customers will notice.

And lastly, if you start becoming really successful, don’t sabotage yourself. You deserve your success, because you worked hard for it. Keep up the momentum.


*15,000 square inches completed for 2K14

** "Lost Horizon" 36" x 36", acrylic on gallery wrapped canvas, Price $3240, If you would like to purchase this painting please contact me at jvander51@msn.com or call (408)460-7237  Thank you!



Only 7 More Days Until Christmas

Display at Fast Frame
Displayed at Fast Frame

I will honor Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year. Charles Dickens

I have a Christmas shopping idea for you. Come visit Fast Frame in Morgan Hill, where I have over 20 original paintings displayed. There is something for everyone, all sizes and genres, from cityscapes to landscapes. Many have never been seen before. Also, I have shared my collection from my San Francisco series that I have been accumulating for the last few years.

Leah De Lane has framed them beautifully. Many of the frames can be easily mixed and matched for a larger wall.

If you would like to me to meet your there, please contact me at jvander51@msn.com  I would love to join you and if you have the time show my gratitude by taking you to lunch.

My art will be displayed from now until the end of January 2015.

Here are the times and location:


Fast Frame-17505 Monterey Road,
Morgan Hill CA.
(at the corner of 1st Street, near Sinaloa Cafe) (408) 776-3056.

Store hours:

Monday - Friday, 10:00am - 6:00pm

Saturday, 10:00am - 5:00pm

Sunday Closed

After-hours appointments available



*Contact me either through email, jvander51@msn.com or phone (408) 460-7237 

Blake's Birthday Present

Power Rangers
Power Rangers

"It's Morphin' Time!"-Jason Power Ranger


I was on a mission to paint four Power Rangers for my son Blake. We had remodeled his bedroom over six months ago, leaving his walls bare for that period of time. Blake asked me numerous times to paint the power rangers for him, but to be honest with you I was so confused about what he wanted, I chose to opt out.

He specifically wanted a Red Power Ranger, a Black Power Ranger, a Green Power Ranger and a White Power Ranger. Who would think that there were so many Red Power Rangers to choose from, and Blake wanted no other than “Zeo” Red Power Ranger

Zeo Red Power Ranger 24" x 36" acrylic on gallery wrapped canvas
Zeo Red Power Ranger
24" x 36" acrylic on gallery wrapped canvas

The same thing went for the Black Power Rangers, too numerous to mention. His choice was “Dino Thunder Black Ranger”. “Oh Lord Have Mercy On Me.” If it wasn’t for my son Blair now 32 years old, who experienced them first hand, I wouldn’t have known who was who. Here’s a little trivia. Did you know that Black Rangers are often in the core Ranger team? When the Black Power Ranger isn’t among one of the core five Rangers team, the Green Ranger takes his place.

Dino Thunder Black Ranger 24" x 36" acrylic on gallery wrapped canvas
Dino Thunder Black Ranger
24" x 36" acrylic on gallery wrapped canvas



Now for the White and Green Power Ranger, Blake wanted the original, since again there isn’t just one, but many to choose from. He wanted the Green and White Power Ranger played by Tommy Oliver. Another trivia, White Rangers can be male or female. The Green Ranger is usually the jokester. 

White Power Ranger 24" X 36" acrylic on gallery wrapped canvas
White Power Ranger
24" X 36" acrylic on gallery wrapped canvas

Blake had a specific order in which the Rangers were to be painted, Red, Green, White then Black. The taskmaster quickly reminded me after I finished one to get started painting the next one as quickly as possible. Remember, I had to finish these by his Birthday. All completed in a month, each acrylic on gallery wrapped canvas, measure 24” x 36”.

Green Power Ranger 24" x 36" acrylic on gallery wrapped canvas
Green Power Ranger
24" x 36" acrylic on gallery wrapped canvas


After completing the paintings I consulted Feng Shui master Deborah Gee for their correct placement in Blake’s room. Using the Bagua map I placed the Black Power Ranger to the left of his bed as you enter the room and the Green to the right of his bed. She told me to move the Green Ranger, because the sword conflicted with the energy in the current location and will offer Blake protection when placed directly in front of the entrance of the room. The Red Ranger was then placed to the right of the bed and the White Ranger was placed opposite the wall of his bed.

There is such a good feeling when you enter the room. I feel the Rangers protection and positive energy; each one embedded with my love for Blake.


Dear Blake,

You know I would do anything for you and thank you for the journey and Happy Birthday!

Love you, Mom


Anatomy of an Art Show


Cultural Community Center, Morgan Hill, CA
Cultural Community Center, Morgan Hill, CA


It's one bloody little achievement after the other. (Joseph P. Blodgett)

Well, you can't have a show without a body of work and for the last three years that has been my focus.  Although, I have sold quite a few pieces, I have continued to replace with more paintings.  I am currently showing my work at the Cultural Community Center, which is my fourth venue so far this year, with a fifth to follow in November at Fast Frame.  I am very pleased with the outcome.  

photo 3-7

Most of the places I showed this year were planned between a year and six months ahead of time. Some shows were very focused on selling work and others were to get exposure.  The Cultural Community Center has up to 4,000 people visitors a month. 

photo 5-5

I thought I would give you an idea how this show evolved from beginning to end, perhaps giving you some ideas for your future shows.  Not all venues are the same so you have to plan accordingly.  


First, I visit the venue prior to the show and take measurements as well as get a general idea of where I will put my art.  This gives me an idea of how big the pieces can be and the groupings that will create the most impact.  It's important to know exactly what you will need and the requirements that are set up by the venue coordinator; always important to contact them and confirm any last minute details, plus the specific time that they want you to set up. I was lucky enough they had hangers for the paintings, a ladder and a platform cart for loading and unloading.


 photo 1-16


At home prior to the show, I pulled all the pieces that I thought would give me the most dramatic show.  By sorting the paintings by size, it not only helped me figure the amount of paintings to bring, but was much easier to load in the car.

photo 1-15


 Taking account of how many pieces that are needed for the show should be done way ahead of time, especially if you need to paint more paintings.  Luckily, I had a body of work.  

photo 5-4


I then make labels for all my paintings, including the details of each piece:  the title, the size, medium, my name, email and website address.

photo 5-3

 I also printed out a one page Biography to be put on display with my business cards.  

photo 2-13



I have a bag that I bring that is always on hand and ready, that include hangers, my business cards, a tape measure, calculator and blue tape.  The blue painters tape is great for adhering the labels below each painting, without taking any paint off the walls.  I also make a list of all my paintings that I bring.  Sometimes I don't use every painting brought to the venue.   After I complete the hanging, I use my list to account for each piece used.  The ones not used I just cross out.  I give a copy to the coordinator and keep one for myself, as well as keep a copy of any contract signed.




I chose to use fairly large paintings at the Community Center because they had so many large walls.  Small paintings would have disappeared and showed little impact.  

photo 2-12


Also very important, bring some help.  Two hands are always better than one. 

 Lastly, notify your customers about the particulars of your show, by sending an invitation, an email, a personal phone call or a newsletter.   

Here are the details and location of the show.  I would love for you to contact me if you are in the area.  I can meet you there and also take you out to lunch.  

CCC Art Exhibit Date:
August 26, 2014-September 25, 2014
8:00 AM-5:00 PM
Time Details:
Art Exhibit Hours: 8:00 am - 5:00 pm Monday - Friday
Community and Cultural Center
17000 Monterey Road
Morgan Hill, CA 95037
(408) 782-0008


If you would like to contact me, either email me at jvander51@msn.com or call (408) 460-7237  Thank you!







Do You Have a Sacred Place?


A Sacred Place
A Sacred Place-36" x 36" acrylic on gallery wrapped canvas $3240

Your sacred space is where you can find yourself again and again. -- Joseph Campbell   


I’m a contemplative. I don’t know if I always was one or if that developed after I decided to stay home when Blake was born. I used to be in wholesale lumber sales, where constant noise and activity was the norm. I enjoyed the adrenaline rush of selling a commodity item and yet now I enjoy the quiet solitude of being home.


I have a “sacred space” that I visit regularly. It faces the most spectacular view. As I sit in this space, I easily go within. It puts me in a place of no time where I connect to the larger mind. Here I listen, I pray, I learn, and get inspired. I have been going to this space almost daily for the last 25 years. I originally went to this “sacred space” to be heard and prayed often for it. But now I have learned to listen and be.   I am guaranteed something will always happen when I am in this space, especially if I am open.


Listening to the constant chatter that surrounds us daily from social media, the news, television, our cell phones or just noise in general prevents us from hearing our creative muse. Our thoughts from the reptilian brain, the extraneous debris of unusable information encloses us from the frontal creative part of our brain. We become unfocused and distracted by rampant thoughts causing our internal space to be small and cramped. Quietness and solitude can create a vast space for innovative ideas, inspiration, guidance and problem solving.


Find your sacred space, it can be at home, in nature, or wherever you can find a moment of peace and quiet. Soon you will discover this sacred place will also become your creative space, a place of no limits, boundaries or time.