Thursday, March 24, 2011

Etsy - Another Experiment

In the post "My Sanctuary..." I shared my desire to renew my commitment to "hand" coloring my black and white photographs. In keeping with that intention, I opened an Etsy shop last week.

Etsy has always intrigued me. I love the idea of handmade and independent, which is what Etsy represents to me.

I found this posted on the website: "Etsy is more than a marketplace: we're a community of artisans and artists, creators, collectors, thinkers and doers." I like the way that sounds.

I am still adding to and promoting my Fine Art America site and my "store" on the ImageKind website,  but I have lost a little of the enthusiasm I had just a couple of months ago.

One of the benefits of both of these sites is, once you set up your "shop", (which is quite a bit of work by the way,) your job is done. (Actually, you still have to market it, but that's another post.)

If someone purchases one of your images, all printing, matting, framing and shipping is done through the website. Nothing else is required of the artist. Yes - this is a benefit, and I am thrilled if I make a sale, but I also like the idea of something to balance out the automated nature of that business model.

The first few pieces I have added to my Etsy shop are all original photographs, printed in the darkroom and hand colored with Marshall photo oil paints. These older images are priced very reasonably for original art. Newer original images, as well as prints will be added soon, but for now, I like the idea of using this site as a place to show the few remaining traditional hand colored photographs I have left.

I will be signing, packaging and shipping all the work offered in my Etsy shop. A few months ago that just seemed like too much work. I think I lost sight of one of the joys I get from selling my work to other people. The relationships that are formed are deeply appreciated and without that, I feel isolated and out of touch. I like the idea of putting a little note or other token in the package. It's the human element, the face at both ends of the transaction that feels more important to me right now.


I have come to the conclusion that experimenting and discovery is crucial when it comes to our art, but is also part of the process of figuring out our own authentic way to present and market it as well. Try a little of this and a little of that......A friend once told me "it's like throwing cooked pasta to the wall. Some of it will stick and some won't, but you won't know unless you throw it." So, I am doing a lot of "throwing" these days. You may want to duck..............


  1. hi dianne -

    welcome to Etsy - i will track your shop down in a day or two -

    am eager to see what you have in the shop and try to get the word out about your shop -


  2. Thanks Deborah! I appreciate that. I hope to add more pieces soon, so keep checking back.

  3. Congratulations Dianne. I admire your willingness to experiment with marketing and I like "throwing the pasta" as a metaphor. Another artist friend recently shared that selling art work was like fishing."You put in a lot of lines and wait to see what bites..."

  4. Thank you Hannah. I like the fishing metaphor too!