FYI: How to pack paintings for shipping (from Saatchiart.com)

How do I pack paintings for shipping?

Below are instructions for how to package:

• Paintings smaller than 48″x48″
• Paintings larger than 48″x48″
• Framed paintings
• Rolled canvas paintings
Please follow the instructions appropriate for your work. To download our complete Packaging Guidelines (which also includes information on the common causes of artwork damage, the proper packing materials, links to additional resources, and more) click the link in the Attachments section below.

IMPORTANT: Always make certain that your painting is completely dry before packaging it for shipment. Sometimes paint can appear dry when it’s not. Since drying time depends on such factors as the type and brand of paint, the drying mediums used (if any), the paint colors, etc., you must research the correct drying time for the specific supplies you’ve used. Our insurance will NOT cover damage to paintings as a result of shipping before the paint was completely dry.

Paintings smaller than 48”x 48”

What you’ll need:

• Acid-free archival tissue paper or glassine paper
• Plastic sheeting, poly wrap, or heavy plastic bag
• Bubble wrap
• Foam board at least ½” thick
• Packing tape
• Cardboard corner protectors
• Cardboard box

Step 1 – Wrap the painting in acid-free, archival tissue paper or glassine. Note that any material that comes into contact with the surface of the work should be archival quality. We advise that you avoid touching the painting’s surface with bare hands by wearing white cotton gloves or placing acid-free tissue paper between the work and your fingers when handling.

Step 2 – To protect against moisture, wrap the glassine-covered artwork with plastic sheeting/poly wrap or put it inside a heavy plastic bag. Use tape to seal all areas where water can enter and cause damage.

Step 3 – Take four (4) 8”x 8” square pieces of acid-free tissue paper (you may adjust the size of the squares to better fit the size of your work) and fold each in half diagonally to create a triangle, then fold in half again to create a triangle pocket. Place one pocket onto each corner of the painting.

Step 4 – Taping only onto the tissue paper corners, tape the wrapped painting to a sheet of foam board the same size or slightly larger than the painting for a firm backing.

Step 5 – Wrap the entire work with two (2) layers of bubble wrap for a protective padding. Wrap it as you would a gift, using tape to secure it shut.

Step 6 – Place cardboard corner protectors on the corners of the wrapped artwork.

Step 7 – Place the wrapped artwork between 2 pieces of foam board that are at least ½” thickness, forming a “sandwich.” Also, the borders of the foam board sheets should extend 2-3 inches beyond all edges of the bubble-wrapped artwork. Use packing tape to bind the foam board sandwich together. Be certain the sides are taped down firmly to ensure that the artwork doesn’t shift around within.

IMPORTANT: Take care not to apply too much pressure to the surface of your artwork. Doing so could create indentations on the stretched canvas.

Step 8 – Place the foam board-covered painting into a cardboard box with approximately three (3) inches of space on all sides. Fill the empty space with enough bubble wrap or wadded/shredded white paper to ensure that the artwork doesn’t shift during transit.

Step 9 – Use the H-taping method to seal the box. The H-taping method involves using long strips of packing tape to completely seal the opening flaps of the box. Use one long strip of tape over the horizontal opening between the two flaps, and two strips over the vertical sides of the flaps—forming an “H.” Apply additional vertical strips of tape as needed across the sealed flaps for added reinforcement. Illustrations of this method are provided by different sources online. Just type “H-taping method” into the Google search box.

Step 10 – Affix the shipping label to the package and put clear tape over the label so it doesn’t get removed during shipment. Using a felt tip pen, write “FRAGILE” in large capital letters on the box, or use ready-made “FRAGILE” labels.

Paintings larger than 48”x 48”

Note that in addition to these instructions, you’ll also be asked to refer to the instructions in the FAQ–“How do I pack work in a crate?””

What you’ll need:

• Acid-free archival tissue paper or glassine paper
• Plastic sheeting, poly wrap, or plastic bag
• Bubble wrap
• Foam board at least ½” thick
• Packing tape
• Cardboard corner protectors
• Custom-made wooden crate (See the FAQ–“How do I pack work in a crate?”)

Step 1 – Wrap the painting in acid-free, archival tissue paper or glassine. Note that any material that comes into contact with the surface of the work should be archival quality. We also advise that you avoid touching the painting’s surface with bare hands by wearing white cotton gloves or placing acid-free tissue paper between the work and your fingers when handling.

Step 2 – To protect against moisture, wrap the artwork with plastic sheeting, a plastic bag, or poly wrap and use tape to seal all areas where water can enter and cause damage.

Step 3 – Take four (4) 8”x 8” square pieces of acid-free tissue paper (you may adjust the size of the squares to better fit the size of your work) and fold each in half diagonally to create a triangle, then fold in half again to create a triangle pocket. Place one pocket onto each corner of the painting.

Step 4 – Taping only onto the tissue paper corners, tape the wrapped painting to a sheet of foam core for a firm backing.

Step 5 – Wrap the entire work with at least three (3) layers of bubble wrap for a protective padding. Use more if you believe your painting requires more protection (e.g. it has a raised surface). Wrap it as you would a gift, using tape to secure it shut.

Step 6 – Next, build a wooden crate and seal the work inside. To do so, follow all the steps given in the the FAQ– “How do I pack work in a crate?”

Framed paintings

What you’ll need:

• Acid-free archival tissue paper or glassine paper
• Plastic sheeting or poly wrap
• Bubble wrap
• Painters tape (if packing a glass frame)
• Cardboard corner protectors
• Packing tape
• Foam board at least ½” thick
• Shredded or wadded white paper
• Very sturdy cardboard box if framed artwork is under 18”x24”
• Custom wooden crate if framed artwork is larger than 18”x24”

Step 1 – Use a sturdy cardboard box or build a custom crate that will fit the framed painting plus approximately three (3) inches of space on all sides. (This extra space will accommodate the layers of bubble wrap to be added.)

Step 2 – If the frame has a protective glass or acrylic pane, remove it from the frame. If it does not, skip to step 4. Apply two pieces of painters tape diagonally across the glass/acrylic pane to form a large “X”. Should the glass break during shipment, the tape will help keep the broken pieces together.

Step 3 – Sandwich the glass/acrylic pane between two sheets of foam board approximately 2 inches larger than the glass on all sides. Firmly seal the foam board sandwich all around with packing tape, making sure that the glass/acrylic panel does not shift around within.

Step 4 – Wrap the painting in acid-free, archival tissue paper or glassine. Note that any material that will come into contact with the surface of the painted work should be archival quality.

Step 5 – To protect against moisture, wrap the artwork with plastic sheeting or poly wrap

Step 6 – Add cardboard corner protectors to the corners of the wrapped work. You can buy corner protectors ready made, or you can construct them yourself. Several online resources offer instructions on how to make them.

Step 7 – Wrap the framed painting in three (3) layers of bubble wrap, using packing tape to secure it.

If your framed painting is larger than 18”x24”, you’ll need to build a wooden crate and seal the work inside. Please follow the steps in the FAQ–“How do I pack work in a crate?”

If your framed painting is under 18”x24”, proceed to Step 8 below.

Step 8 – Sandwich the wrapped painting within two sheets of foam board and tape all the way around to secure it.

Step 9 – Place it inside a sturdy cardboard box. To minimize movement within the box, thoroughly fill any empty areas around the artwork with shredded paper. The more snug the fit, the less the potential for damage. Seal the box thoroughly with packing tape, reinforcing the corners.

Step 10 – Affix the shipping label to the package and put clear tape over the label so it doesn’t get removed during shipment. Using a felt tip pen, write “FRAGILE” in large capital letters on the package, or use ready-made “FRAGILE” labels.

Rolled canvas paintings

Paintings on canvas up to 72”x72” may be taken off its stretchers, rolled, and shipped in a heavy duty mailing tube between 8” and 12” diameter, depending on the size of the canvas. Make absolutely certain that your painting is completely dry before attempting to roll it.

What you’ll need:

• Acid-free archival tissue paper or glassine paper
• Heavy duty mailing tube with plastic end caps no smaller than 8” in diameter and up to 12” (depending on the size of your canvas).
• A second tube of smaller diameter for inner support. (You’ll roll your artwork around this tube and insert it inside the larger tube.)
• Packing tape
• Bubble wrap

Step 1 – Sandwich your canvas between two layers of acid free archival paper. Make sure that the canvas is completely covered by the paper.

Step 2 – Roll the paper-covered artwork—paint side outward—around the smaller tube to provide inner support.DO NOT roll too tightly as this can damage the painting!

Step 3 – Next, roll a layer of bubble wrap around the artwork for padding and to seal out moisture. Seal completely with tape.

Step 4 – Place this tube within the outer mailing tube. Fill extra space at the ends with extra bubble wrap, but take care not to crush the edges of your painting. Place the end caps on and seal them shut with packing tape.

Step 10 – Affix the shipping label to the package and put clear tape over the label so it doesn’t get removed during shipment. Clearly mark the tube as “FRAGILE.”

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25 Ways Artists Can Market Their Work by Carolyn Edlund

25 Ways Artists & Craftspeople Can Market Their Work

By Carolyn Edlund
You’ve put in tons of studio time, developed a signature style, created a body of work and are serious about selling your art or crafts and building your business. Even if you’re an experienced pro, are you doing everything you can to market yourself and create opportunities for sales every day?
Here are 25 ways to spread the word, spur interest in yourself and your work, and grow a base of dedicated customers:
1. Diversify your efforts. If you are currently working in one medium, how many other ways can your images be sold – as t-shirts, mugs, mouse pads, notecards, etc. Use online resources such as Café Press and Zazzle to sell your creations in multiple formats. Many well-known artists do this.
2. Sell Retail – and Wholesale. Are you currently selling only to the public? You may be giving up a huge market – wholesale buyers. Crunch the numbers and see if you can sell your products to the wholesale market. This involves making items in mass-production (such as prints, pottery, etc.) not strictly originals.
3. Sell your Work through Online Outlets. Etsy, Red Bubble, DeviantArt,ArtyBuzz and other sites let you upload images and sell through their venue. Take advantage of these popular websites not only to sell but to create recognition and publicity.
4. Show Your Work in Alternative Spaces. In this economy, there are empty storefronts, window space on busy streets and other non-traditional places to show and sell your work. Pop-up galleries have become a trend, and can be placed in homes for sale, restaurants, and available real estate for next to nothing.
5. License Your Work. Many artists license their designs to manufacturers and get paid well for their work, giving them a steady stream of income. Use this as a primary or secondary way of creating income.
6. Apply to Exhibitions. Keep sending in applications to shows which suit your work. Show up personally to shows you get into at local galleries to speak with visitors. This will help lead to sales and commissions.
7. Write About Yourself. Write an article about yourself and your work, or have an article written about you. Does your work involve anything unusual or complex? Explain your techniques, using lots of photos. Post your article on ezines, on your blog, or use them in press releases.
8. Regularly Send out Press Releases – Any time you have news, whether it is a show you are participating, a new body of work you have created, or if you just want to publicize your work, you can send out press releases, by email and on paper. Send them to trade publications, local newspapers, large newspapers, blogs, and news organizations. Photos of yourself and your work are essential. Most importantly, tell your story. The press is always looking for interesting stories for their readers. And face it, you’re interesting!
9. Cultivate Referrals. Word-of-mouth referrals are like gold – you want to encourage them whenever possible. So, how to get referrals? Ask for them! When you send out an email newsletter to your existing customer list, ask them to refer any friends who may be interested in your work. You may want to offer a discount or a gift card for these referrals. And be sure to thank anyone who gives you one!
10. Respond to Requests from the Press. The flip side of press releases is to respond to reporters looking for interviews, such as HARO. Also consider writing articles for publication on popular sites such as Fine Art Views who solicit them. Drive readers to your website by providing a link – and then when they get there . . .
11. Make Your Website into an E-commerce Site. You spent a lot of time and money on your website. So, where’s the shopping cart? Getting online visitors is challenging enough, but when they do visit and can’t make a purchase, you lose the sale. Check out this great article by Ann Rea on the subject.
12. Exhibit at Trade Shows. It can be expensive to do a trade show, so make sure you have done your homework first and target the right ones. Participating in a trade show gets your work in front of many buyers, and can be extremely profitable.
13. Sell at Home Shows. Do you have clients or patrons who would be willing to open their home and invite their friends to come and see your work? Partner up with other artists if you wish and create a great experience by setting up displays in a home and selling to a private audience. Give the hostess some free work or other gift to thank them. This is a proven method I’ve used personally to make thousands of dollars in sales.
14. Do a Trunk show for a Retail Store. Boutiques, galleries and department stores have a “meet the designer” event and you show up, bringing new work with you that isn’t available in the store’s inventory. You split the sales with the store, and it’s a win/win. The store owner should provide their customer list for a promotional postcard mailing, and you can advertise in the local paper and online.
15. Hire Sales Reps. This is a powerful way to multiply your presence and exposure to wholesale buyers. Working with reps (if you have a mass-produced production line of products) can add a huge dimension to your marketing and your sales.
16. Cultivate Buyers in Your Niche. Get involved with people who enjoy and support your chosen niche. Is your work animal-related? Attend SPCA and charity events for animal rescue. Do you create nautical art? Participate in waterfront, sailing events and clean water causes. Donate some work to help raise money and awareness. Get to know the people who run events, and participate in groups for your cause. Subscribe to publications and websites which support your niche, which of course you will be sending press releases to!
17. Advertise. This may be in a newspaper, magazine, on related websites or even Google adsense ads. Use compelling images of your work. If necessary, get professional help from freelance writers or marketing consultants.
18. Volunteer. Help out at a local art event or sale. Get to know the people who support the arts and enjoy participating. They can often introduce you to many others in that community who can help spread the word about you. Plus, you get the satisfaction of being a volunteer and helping others.
19. Participate at a Decorator Show House Event. Many areas around the country have seasonal Decorator shows where a large house is transformed by many interior designers and they are well-attended. Vendors at these homes usually get exposed to a crowd of affluent buyers and can make lots of money in sales.
20. List your Business in Directories. Is your studio listed in YellowPages.com? It’s free. Add your listing to Google search, and other business directories to get the attention of local buyers. List your website address in online directories of artists and craftspeople, providing a way for potential customers to find you.
21. Print Postcards of Your Work. Choose several professionally-taken photos of your work, and have a selection of postcards printed. Use these in mailings to your customer list, to hand out at shows, or as leave-behinds for business contacts.
22. Seek out Corporate Markets. Is your artwork appropriate for hanging in hotels, offices and other business environments? Submit your portfolio to corporate art advisers, or get in touch with buyers for hotel chains and make a presentation of your work for consideration. Sometimes framers work with these clients and you may be able to make a strategic partnership with a framer to help promote your work.
23. Open Your Studio. Does your city or community offer any “open studio” events where artists invite the public to see their work space and purchase their art? Participate in these, or have your own open studio by choosing dates, sending postcards, advertising and sending out press releases well in advance. This can coincide with the Christmas holidays, when certain towns invite the public to view homes decorated for a “holiday tour”. Open your studio and let your guests view your work for possible gift ideas.
24. Get involved with Public Art. A relatively new phenomenon, public art allows artists to get exposure they ordinarily would not receive. Find out more by visiting this website and see if you have an idea or project which could be turned into a public art event!
25. Constantly Seek Opportunities. There are many publications out there listing opportunities for artists and craftspeople to sell work. From trade magazines to website directories to craigslist, you can find shows, exhibitions, projects and venues to publicize yourself and your work. Subscribe – whether in paper or online, and plan to read them regularly. Don’t miss out on ways to build your business and grow your customer base!
Author Carolyn Edlund is the founder of Artsy Shark and a business consultant for artists.