Realistic insight on business planning for artists
Art business planning doesn’t come naturally to creative types like us artists. Give us a blank canvas, and we’ll wow our audience anytime. But put a bunch of numbers and dates in front of us…and we often freeze!
The best skill any artist who wants to be successful in business should gain is creating. The reality is that business skills are important as is the ability to sketch, draw, paint or sculpt.
For free business plan samples for creative people go to BPlans. They also have plans for the following businesses:
What I once hated the most became my not only my greatest asset, but also second nature, despite that I had not a bone of business within me.
Before I created my very first business plan, I had absolutely no idea about business. Until then, I had run my own illustration “business” - but that was a one woman endeavour. On a constant basis I had other art business ideas floating around in my head, and I wanted to do much more but those never really took shape until I began to plan.
As we, my business partner Linda and I started out, we envisioned to create a Gallery for Australian book illustrators and had never imagined where it would lead us. In the end for over 2 years Linda and I grappled with a business plan; which ultimately resulted in establishing the first Australian Visual Literacy Centre in Southbank, Brisbane, a most prestigious region for tourism and locals. A business plan for creatives may have been easy for my business partner at the time, but it didn’t come easy to me; but perseverance paid off!
We added a lot more to the original idea, so the Centre comprised of an art school for training students in visual literacy and illustration mediums, as well as a gallery housing the original artwork of published Australian Book Illustrators and their books. Our offerings covered visual literacy and illustration, and our audience included both students and teachers from the Sunshine Coast to the Gold Coast.
And we had bigger plans, including merchandising and a lot more. We even had systems in place to grow our teaching activities to around 20,000 school students from the surrounding areas each year, as we worked closely with the Education Department and had written an integrated Curriculum for visual literacy.
And as we focused on our art business planning, even more ideas came flooding through…and all with just the starting idea for an art gallery! Without a business plan, I doubt we’d be able to grow our dream to such an extent and make it reality!
Sadly though, I had to give up the business a few years later, but not due to lack of planning or enthusiasm. My husband was battling a sudden terminal illness, and I gave up my second love, my art business, to be beside my first love in his hour of need. I surrendered my business…but gained inner peace!
Essentials of Business Planning for Artists
Your world can expand all of a sudden, because you see things which were hidden before.
As we charted our course, art business tips and ideas came rolling into our minds and we continued to review and refine them. Throughout this process, I learned invaluable lessons about art business planning.
Here are some reasons why a business plan is one of the best tools for any business, even if written just for yourself:
While planning, you as an artist, get to know your strength and weaknesses; and in the process you get to find solutions for yourself and your business
Entrepreneurs who spend time on planning are more willing to see those plans through fruition
Working through a business plan provides a clear measure of your strengths and weaknesses on all levels, and brings forward art business ideas you probably would never have otherwise thought of
The planning process gives emerging artists tips and ideas on how to go about opening new doors to expand their business
Many people dream about business but never really do it. Great but vague ideas are never realised. A business plan clarifies loose ideas and puts them into perspective
It is a proven fact that business planning doubles success
A business plan for creatives, like painters, sculptors and musicians, helps bring focus where its required – i.e. vision to the actual business of art, and NOT just to the creative endeavours that business will undertake
I recently read somewhere that business planning is obsolete. Far from it! Art business planning is one of the essential ingredients that will help in particular artists’ business survive and thrive. And as you walk down the path of your planning process, you’ll be amazed at the art business ideas that will follow.
Ultimately, knowledge“is freedom, because former fear turns into fun!”
I’ve come to appreciate business planning as a process of “liberation”. From someone who only knew how to paint; I now see myself as a well-rounded entrepreneur that sees the bigger picture of my entire business operations. Art business planning has given me knowledge about every aspect of what we do. And ultimately, knowledge is freedom, because former fear turns into fun!
FREE BUSINESS PLANS
You will find here a list of organisations and businesses that offer free business plan templates. Some of them are general business plans and others specifically made for artists.
Please note that we do not endorse any of the business plans listed here but provided a list to help you saving time searching for business plan templates yourself.