When you leave art school or you are an accomplished freelance illustrator, graphic artist, fine art photographer or aspiring contemporary artist, the commercial world can be both exciting and a daunting prospect to break into.
Building your profile or brand can be a full time job and most artists just want to create the art they love. The idea of building a website and keeping it up to date, marketing, admin and the finance aspect can be overwhelming for some and in reality takes up the majority of time that could be used to be creating artworks, after all that is what the dream is all about and why you have trained for years in a particular craft.
We talked to Eliza Southwood, who is a successful contemporary artist, working exclusively with Bridgeman Studio about the challenges an artist faces and the case studies where she is making a name for herself.
“My experience of Bridgeman Studio so far has been very positive. It’s a really useful way of getting your art out on an accessible platform where a large amount of potential clients will see it. I am terrible at admin, so it is great to have Bridgeman handling copyright and licensing. It leaves me with a bit more time to paint and design prints. I really like being able to field direct enquiries to Bridgeman rather than having to negotiate with clients myself.
Bridgeman are very up to date with social media and are a constant presence on Twitter, Instagram, etc. promoting their artists and getting their work seen at a wider level. If only Van Gogh had been alive today!”
Eliza has been successful in licensing her work to clients all over the world and creating some incredible commissions for a variety of industries. Her recent work with Grand Central Creative was to create the artwork for the label and campaign to launch a limited edition Pinot Noir.
“Commissions–wise, I get all sorts of enquiries about my work via Bridgeman, and they have some really interesting opportunities for artists – shows and competitions, which lead on to commissions. Also, Bridgeman insist on a good deal for artists. This is crucial as emerging artists tend to undervalue their work, so having an organization negotiate a fair deal for you is a huge bonus.
THE ART OF ‘LE TOUR DE FRANCE’
Using ‘art’ as a focus, Grand Central Creative worked with renowned cyclist artist, Eliza Southwood to create a limited edition piece of art to drive awareness of the Cono Sur Le Tour de France partnership.
“Our challenge was simple,” says Andy Gregory, Creative Director at Grand Central Creative “to create premium standout and distinctiveness in the ‘wall of wine’. There’s a strong historical link to art for Le Tour de France and today, fans choose to create their own interpretations of famous riders, climbs and tour folklore in a variety of ways. We used this to inspire our 2016 Tour de France campaign”
Eliza perfectly captures competing cyclists riding against a typical Tour de France backdrop, which could equally be a Chilean landscape with the backdrop of the Andes.
A core design was produced using the colourways of Pinot Noir. This was then adapted for each different varietal using colour cues from each bottle. The revised label received such a great response from the trade that the final number of bottles produced was in excess of 2 million.
“The art has really helped us to share the brand story and explain the heritage of Bicicleta and it’s association with Le Tour de France,” says Gregory.
To showcase the art, cross-track advertising across the London Underground network was used to highlight the ‘UK’s number 1 Pinot Noir’ message. This also helped deliver the ‘Limited Edition’ communication and a reminder to purchase.
At the same time, a co-ordinated Facebook video campaign was used to tell the story and inspiration behind the art. The video takes a look into Eliza’s studio and allows the viewer to see a snapshot of the entire process from start to finished art.
To help build awareness and excitement around the new designs, bespoke presentation boxes containing samples of the Pinot Noir and Viognier, as well as an original, signed Eliza Southwood print, were delivered to trade and consumer journalists.
THE ART OF DIVERSITY IN THE COMMERCIAL WORLD
Eliza also sells original artwork and limited edition prints on CultureLabel.com. This is a partnership through Bridgeman Studio and Bridgeman Gallery offering artists different commercial opportunities for their work. Talking to Bridgeman Artists’ Manger Lucy Innes Williams about the development of multiple channels for the artists already on Bridgeman Studio she had this to say;
“We are delighted to have launched Bridgeman Gallery, selling original artwork from our stable of talented artists. We represent all of these artists for licensing and commissions too, and being able to offer a platform to selling artwork is proving hugely popular with new artists wanting to join. We are delighted to have been welcomed onto the CultureLabel website. Their marketing support and customer base has allowed us to expand quickly with an assured footfall of customers interested in acquiring fine art.”
To license or commission Eliza or hundreds of the world’s leading contemporary artists visit BridgemanStudio.com or buy her limited edition prints and original artworks on CultureLabel.com.