Decided to restart the blog again, as I’ve been revamping the website and regaining a sense of direction. I will be adding a shop section, improving SEO, pages, etc. I will also be updating the blog weekly, and sharing the latest projects and artworks. The most recent development has been my designing of greeting cards featuring reptiles for holidays and other occasions. Here are a few examples.
Along with art prints, I’ve been branching out to other products like the cards, keychains, and bookmarks. I have some printable stationary listed in my Etsy shop, and eventually I want to have stickers made. Here are a few of the latest artworks that have been finished. One features Day geckos from the genus Phelsuma, and a pair of gargoyle gecko designs for greeting cards.
I got caught up in other things again, but haven’t stopped arting away. It took some time for me to finally finish my new piece “DragonGears”, and I hadn’t done a 11″ x 14″ size artwork in a while.
Ended up with some steampunk gears in the background. Goodies and prints of this piece are now available through the shop links listed on the homepage.
I have had some issues with camera and video editing for my youtube channel the last two weeks. Couldn’t get my camera positioned right for filming, and failed to try and understand the LightWorks video editor. As a result, the last part of this artworks progress was all in still shots.
I’d been looking for a decent editor to help improve the quality of videos and utterly failed with that particular one. I finally found one that has an easier to grasp interface called VideoPad. It has a nice design and welcoming interface, along with added effects and things to help make videos look more professional.
In other news, I have new products exclusively available through my Etsy shop. Bookmarks and 11″ x 17″ posters of some of my work is slowly being added to shop sections. The bookmarks are pretty nicely made, and aren’t available anywhere else.
The last week has been a little draining with bogging myself down with the details of the new online shops. I also had a two commissions which were due, and they’ve been sent out to their new home. I already have a few repeat customers, which is a great asset to have for my business. Everyone I’ve worked with so far has been great, and I’ve enjoyed the challenges of each piece.
The shops are what I find a little draining. Getting familiar with, and using better search tags, proper image resolutions, making image edits for certain product templates, as well as deciding which artworks to cement my brand have been the bulk of setting up those accounts. With most of that done, now I have to do the work of gaining followers to reach a wider audience in those arenas. This includes promoting/ or adding other artists’ work to my favorites. I’ve also been leaving comments, and following some of them, too. This is something I have read needs to be done daily, if not every other day, and it seems to help in the long run. Artists promoting each other is part of the networking process on these sites. So far, I have a few new followers, and eventually that should build up to higher numbers and then sales.
I have noticed another detail in looking over the products available at each site, and realized that some product options are unique to each shop. Where you can buy that particular item on RedBubble, it doesn’t exist on Siciety6, and vice versa. For instance, RedBubbble offers drawstring bags, scarves, dresses, mini skirts, and acrylic blocks. Society6 offers backpacks, dufflebags, and all-over print shirts.
The artwork I had didn’t fit a few of the products on RedBubble properly, so I opted to just have those available through Society6. The apparel, home décor, and tech accessories products in each shop are virtually identical. In this line of thought, I felt it would likely be a good prospect to capitalize on each site’s unique products, rather than have just the same in each spot. Only time will tell which on these becomes more popular.
As per my usual dose of self doubt that pops up every so often, I happened to look up how long most small businesses take to finally get off the ground. The average, depending on many factors, is 3-5 years. This made me a little depressed, but at the same time, I’m learning albeit slowly not to overload myself. I want things to happen faster, so some of my worry might go away, but worry is the hallmark of starting a business. It probably continues afterward, too, but the initial startup gets everyone stressed. One thing I did read that for some odd reason made me feel a little better was that the first year is also the most fun. This is because this is the time when you are learning where your niche is, and figuring things out. There’s some relief in thinking that I will figure out what works and what doesn’t and finally get the routine of things.
In the meantime, I can finally get back to creating new art again. I have a few rough sketches for some ideas, and here are a few.
Stay tuned, as I will have more updates with new products and art coming out in the next few weeks. ~Angela
I have branched out to add new online shops for my work, as well as have new and really awesome products. I’m getting out my brand and hopefully expanding in potential revenue streams. Society6 and RedBubble are where I set up a few spots of my own. I may also be adding Threadless soon.
Products include apparel, home decor, stationary, drinkware, and tech accessories.
My RedBubble shop is here. Here are just a few images of what’s available there.
Meanwhile, I’m taking a break from the YouTube videos for a while. I enjoyed doing them, but they were an added chore getting in the way of my priorities. I will have a loose uploading rhythym for now, but mainly for videos having to do with my own work( not tutorials) and the occasional pet video.
My most recent video was actually taken at an event held by my local reptile club where we have animals displayed and educate the public on reptiles and how they’re kept. Some really cool animals were brought out. Dax (Eastern Box Turtle) & Gimli, my bearded dragon were brought along with me to meet the public. Dax is a great little turtle to bring, just as an example of how NOT to care for a box turtle, but so many people loved him for his cuteness and colorful markings.
I thought I’d add a reminder since the end date is just around the corner. As it says above, please subscribe to become a Patron to avoid losing the benefits of Patron-only content! There are three tiers $1, $5, or $10 per month to gain access to content and rewards!
I’m in the process of growing my YT channel to coincide with my Patreon, so any feedback is appreciated. Please check out the tutorials and other videos there, as I upload about 3 videos per week; A review, a tutorial, and a video of how an artwork goes from concept to creation. I periodically add videos of timelapse, nature walks/ herping, and personal causes. Let me know your thoughts!
As stated before here is a list of free and paid content.
NOTE: I decided to make the Product Reviews and Videos Highlighting What Inspires Me part of the free content. I felt that the reviews would be more helpful to a wide range for people, and the inspiration stuff would give my audience more insight into who I am.
Simple Tutorials (Quick Techniques For Drawing In Graphite/Colored Pencil)
Just a reminder that half the content I’ve been creating for my YouTube channel will be Patron-Only after Aug 31.
If you are not subscribed to me on Patreon, here’s a list of all you’ll be missing out on.
In Depth Tutorials, Previews of Upcoming Work/ Projects, Art Product Reviews, Concept To Completion Videos, Your Choice of Tutorial or Topic, Live Hangout, Advice on Your Artwork, Art Bookmarks & Postcard Prints, and Customized Items. There’s also a Gift Box for long term Patrons!
I have some tutorials I uploaded last week, as well as some new art, and a quick Game of Thrones fanart timelapse.
The latest from my fantasy offerings is The Egg Maiden, featuring two hatching bearded dragons. I enjoyed doing the lava lamp effect around the eggs.
I also had some bookmarks made from an earlier bearded dragon piece I did of my own dragon. They are available for my $5-$10 Patrons on Patreon.
Last week I spent time filming what ended up being a 3-part tutorial on how to draw a turtle shell. The entire thing ended up being an hour long, so I had to cut it down to smaller pieces to render the movie files. I do think it is more digestible for viewers in smaller bits, so that ended up alright.
And then finally, a pencil drawing of Drogon from Game of Thrones.
I will also be making reviews on products and services related to art weekly. I will post the first few for the end of this month, then they will only be available through my Patreon page. If you want to receive this content in the future, you can become a Patron of mine here https://www.patreon.com/AngelaDeRiso
In keeping with my online marketing, I have been posting about once a week while maintaining a presence on YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest. I want to cement this effort into a platform where I can finally do what I truly love, while creating something unique for others to enjoy. I will be posting more of my newer work as I finish it. It’s not just art I’ll be making. I will be making a few types of content for my Patrons, and I would love to have some of my followers on this blog to check out what I have to offer. I’m creating free content until the end of August, and then about half of it will become exclusive to Patrons only.
Visit my Patreon or my YouTube channel for new content every few days.
To show the benefits of becoming a Patron, I’ve listed what you’ll get or have access to at each level.
$1 or more per month
You get to suggest tutorials you want to see
Advice on Materials & how to use them.
20% Off One Purchase
$5 or more per month
30% Off one purchase
Advice & tips on your own artwork/ drawings
To thank you for support, you’ll be sent an art bookmark
Plus all previous rewards
$10 or more per month
A Custom Notebook, Postcard, or Pen
Your Choice Of Video Topic
40% Off One Purchase
Plus all previous rewards
Surprise Gift Box for long term Patrons!
Free VS Paid Content
Free content will include :
Simple Tutorials (Quick Techniques For Drawing In Graphite/ Colored Pencil)