We Simplify The Technical!

Carolyn Graham Edlund with Artsy Shark is back

to give solid and easy tips for great results.

If you are interested in selling your photography as art,

tune in to episode 128 of The Understand Photography Show!

Carolyn Edlund Arsty Shark

Creating a Website to Sell Your Art
with Carolyn Edlund


Carolyn is an Artist Business Consultant and the founder of ArtsyShark.


Why Do I Need a Website?

“Because otherwise you’re invisible.”

Establish an online presence.

  • Be part of an existing website such as Etsy, Fine Art America, or Saatchi.
    – Springboard for getting your work out there.

    – These big sites are well known, already have high traffic and the trust factor.

  • A personal website is better.

– Big host sites allow the customer to easily click over to another artist on the platform.

– The site is not exclusive to you.
– You can be booted off the site for “breaking the rules”.              You have no control of this!

– You may have to pay for visibility, like what is happening with Facebook and Instagram.

– Host sites do not allow you to collect email addresses from customers.


               “Never build your house on someone else’s property.”


  • Build Your Own

– Various platforms available with varying degrees of complexity.

– A Personal site gives you more credibility.

               Credibility = Trust = Business


What Should I have on My Website?

Within the navigation menu you should have the following pages:

  1. Home Page

– You need to grab people’s attention.  Show as many different images as you REASONABLY  can “ABOVE THE FOLD” – before people have to scroll.  4 images will have a better chance of grabbing someone’s attention than one.  What if they don’t like that ONE?  They’ll leave your site.

– You have about 3 seconds to grab their attention and make them stay on your site.

– Show a selection of images – you can even use a slider to add more without making them too small.

– Make everything clickable!  Lead people throughout your site.  Make it easy for them to purchase your art.

  1. About the Artist

– People want to know who you are.  It’s important to have a picture of yourself.  If they know more about you, you become a real person, it helps to connect your customers to you as well as your art.

– Keep written content in short bites. (Long newspaper column articles will make people go away.)

 – Write short paragraphs with lots of visual relief (space), or use bullets.

 – Content should contain a short biography as well as information about what projects you’re currently working on – with links to “see more about it here”.


  1. Portfolio

– It can be overwhelming – you don’t have to try to sell EVERY piece you create!

– Keep it current – archive old work. 

– What are you doing NOW?  What direction are you going?

– May want a “Bestsellers” or “Favorites” section.

– Sort and label categories any way you want – by color, subject, mood, etc.

– Create a backstory for each piece – what was the inspiration? What mood are you trying to capture?  If people feel a connection, they will be more apt to purchase.


  1. In Situ

– Show your art they way you want it to be used/displayed.

– Show the art to scale on walls in furnished rooms.

– This helps people get a better idea of the size they would need for their space.

– Apps available for creating these – ArtRooms.


“You should show your art in 3 images.  One to see the whole piece, one close up of the details, and one in-situ.”


  1. Contact Page

– Show your email address – automatic webforms don’t always work. 

– Include your phone number.


“If someone wants to buy from you, you need to make yourself accessible.”


Other Valuable Pages

Press page:  List of all press/exposure you’ve gotten in magazines, blogs, podcasts, exhibits, etc.

    – Press can lead to more press.

    – This shows that you are newsworthy and that you’ll follow through.

Why Should You Buy My Art: Make people understand why your art is a great purchase, list the features, benefits, and selling points of owning an original.  Tell why this art is a valuable acquisition, that it will be a focal point, etc.

Blog – Only if you can keep it up!  If you can’t stay current, don’t bother – it makes you look obsolete.

– Create a “Pseudo-Blog” by embedding your Instagram feed onto your website.  Show works in progress, write about what’s new – this format doesn’t have to be lengthy.

Events – list any upcoming festivals or showings.

Shopping Cart – some sites have it built-in, some you must add plug-ins.


“You have to be able to handle your website yourself.  Don’t rely on a webmaster for everything.”



– Narrow down size choices to 3 or 4.

– Avoid “Analysis Paralysis”  – too many choices can make people frustrated trying to make up their mind and cause them to leave your site.

– As the artist, you should know what sizes and the media your work should be printed on to make the best impact.  THAT is what you need to offer.

– Sell standard sizes that can be easily framed or are ready to hang. (With the option to ASK about custom sizes and finishes.)


“Tell people what they need to buy and they will beg you for it.”


Finding Carolyn


Understand Photography Show Episode 10


Other sites mentioned in the show:

Art Store Fronts


Big Cartel

Art Span



Understand Photography

General Notes

What you need to learn for a solid photography education.  Watch our free video:


Upcoming Trips:
St. Augustine – April 11-14, 2019
Florida’s Forgotten Coast – May 13-17,  2019
Women’s Photography Weekend, Naples – June 7 – 9, 2019
Tuscany Ladies Photo Workshop and Tour – 
Sept 28 – Oct 5, 2019

New Book!  Peggy Farren and Joe Fitzpatrick have published a book highlighting Florida’s Best Photo Spots!

Florida Photo Spots: Naples and Collier County by [Farren, Peggy, Fitzpatrick, Joe]

Understand Photography is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.

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