Should Art be Free— Thought for the Day

Art should not be free. In days past you had to pay a price to view Art- most Art was for the church- and they demanded your very soul 😉 Modern visual artists give everything away for likes online, which is crazy. Movies are not free, concerts are not free, books are not free, plays are not free. When artists endlessly post our images online it devalues you as an artist and gives you a false sense of success. So here’s my thought for the day: Promotion is one thing but limitless sharing of your work is just bad business.

7 thoughts on “Should Art be Free— Thought for the Day

  1. Agreed, with reservations. For music and film work I’m very selective about what is available online. Photography is more of a hobby for me though, so I don’t have as many problems posting images online; it’s even gotten me a few portrait clients now and then. If I took it more seriously I wouldn’t post everything I shoot willy-nilly (and I do edit, I promise), but I’ve been encouraged by friends to get an instagram account and try to get online sponsors that way. That business model seems a bit newfangled and also exploitative, like the youtube stars, plus I’ve never been a popular kid anyway.

    So besides that, what way is there, exhibitions? Selling prints? I suppose if I were submitting to and being accepted into exhibitions, I might be much more selective about what I’m posting on my blog. Honestly I’m completely alien to that world and am curious about it. What other outlets are there?

    1. Joe, I think you misunderstood what Steve was saying. Promotion is one thing but selling your art is another.
      Imagine that you’ve spent a lot of time and money to create an art work, would you feel ok if someone asked if they could have it for free?
      Surely the best way of producing a one off or limited edition and sell it directly to those who appreciate it enough to pay you what it’s worth as opposed to an ipad version which will never be an actual object.
      I’m all for the finished medium as a solid, signed off print, painting or what have you three dimensional piece. Then it is all about the price.

      1. I get what you’re saying. I think that it’s an economy that’s really screwed up right now, where art (of any form) isn’t valued enough for people to pay for it, and that seems to go all the way back to the invention of radio. I feel it hardest in music, but I’m just saying that on the photography side I’m really not helping at all by having my pics online for free, and would certainly be open to alternatives, if helped along the right path!

  2. I think it is a question of balance. Sometimes it is necessary to put your work out there in order to get some attention, perhaps more so in the world of music. In my opinion some photographers are taking the mickey when it comes to pricing their work so when you sell a print charge what it is worth but don’t ask the earth.

  3. Just yesterday I watched through the instant images of several gorgeous people and asked myself, are these all just amateurs, willing to share this many great photos? Some must be amateurs and some are professionals using their instant output as advertising. I have no account yet and am relatively new to my newfound passion of instant photography. I could start a flickr account and share my pictures and it would be great to share with the community, but do I want to give away my work that way? No, I don’t. But how to share? Making a book someday or entering the art world selling prints? You have to give something first to get known – and if people who are well established can afford to give away…

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