“That’s the photo I want.”
He wanted one of my nocturnal astronomy photos. Specifically, he read my blog from a month ago – this one in particular – and wanted a print of this specific photo.
I hadn’t initially thought of selling the artwork, it was simply a test for a future Milky Way shot – but hey, I’ve known this guy for years, we were buds in college, and I’m sure it will find a nice new display area in his home. So I printed the artwork (McGreevy Pro Lab does wonders), and shipped it off.
But in doing so, I thought about something. And thanks to a recent change in my blogging parameters … well, let me explain.
In the past, after I’ve entered my photographing artworks in competition season, I’ve either repurposed them for art shows and gallery events, or presented them at charity fundraisers like the Saratoga Springs Trask or Historic Albany Foundation’s BUILT. On occasion, I’ve donated artworks to friends as wedding gifts or housewarming gifts. I do that on occasion. I’m like that.
But I’ve also sold pieces here and there – mostly to those who want to purchase them.
That being said, those sales were passive. They were, “It’s here, if you want to buy it, here’s the price, thank you for considering.”
In other words, I wasn’t putting pieces on my blog for the specific purpose of selling my works to my readers, such as, “Look at what I did, do you want to buy a copy?”
Part of that stance evolved from my long association with my former blog portal, which strictly forbade me using my blog to sell my photos. “We can’t do that, Chuck,” I was told, “if you want to sell pictures, you have to buy advertising with us and we have to determine how much to charge and how much of a cut we receive.”
Well, that one-sided partnership ended last April. And no matter what the reasons were for the split, it now occurs to me that I’m the boss of my own blog, and I don’t hvae to worry about anyone censoring or blocking what I say or write, or claiming to want a cut of what is sold.
Not this time.
So I looked into some “side hustle” websites – things like Etsy and Patreon – and considered whether I could open up one of those online storefronts to sell my artworks directly to my readers. You know, just leave the page as an unobtrusive clickable link for those interested in purchasing a Chuck Miller framed or mounted photo or Dream Window or crate art craft or anything.
But before I even consider doing this …
I want to talk to you, my loyal and beloved blog readers.
If you had the option to purchase any of my artworks directly – either after they’ve appeared in competition, or directly as a commission – would you be okay with discreet clickable links, either directly on this blog or through a “side hustle” site like Etsy?
Essentially, no one is under any obligation to purchase anything I’ve made or displayed, and I’m not going to say, “Purchase this to help starving whales in the Mojave Desert” or the like.
I could look into different levels of on-demand purchase – maybe you might like to own an artwork that recently received a ribbon at a competition. Maybe your budget is tight, and you’d like a small print as an accent for a room. Or perhaps you would prefer a high-end custom print, like a metallic reflective print or a specific size or frame. Heck, I could even create a custom limited edition print run – you know, the kind that has a 1/5 numbering and signature, denoting that the print was a limited-edition first of five, and after that print run, no more would be produced.
So let me know in the comments section. Again, you’re not under any obligation to purchase my products, and I won’t think any different of you one way or the other.
But yeah, just let me know your thoughts.
Definitely would love to get yoru opinions on the matter.