Celebrating the baby steps (of my art journey)

  • SVS OG

    Have my website started. Still need to go through with a few suggestions you guys gave me. Started a Society6 shop and sold two mugs. It’s the little things, right. Need to upload a bunch more stuff to that site. Printed a bunch of cards for Teaher gifts and a fundraiser auction. Thought it would be a good time to snap a few pictures to eventually put on the website in the “shop” section. Yay. And entered a few Spoonflower’s this month. Got 36 votes for the feather pattern from people I don’t know. Wanted to see how well it would do without asking people on Instagram and Facebook to vote.. 948DD713-750A-4AA7-AD09-5D73960F08B5.jpeg

    Just trying to move the needle a little at a time.

  • Pro

    @Whitney-Simms Beautiful, congratulations Whitney!
    I'd love to see your new Society6 shop! ❤
    And if you're looking for more ways to increase traffic to it, I have had good results with Pinterest and totally recommend it 🙂

  • SVS OG

    One more thought. I heard this the other day

    “Don’t compare your beginning to someone else’s middle”

    A few more

    “Don’t compare your Monday worst to someone’s Sunday morning best.”

    “Comparison is the thief of joy.”

    That’s all. Sorta. I submitted a nautical design for spoonflower. Yay! Vintage lake stuff. And of course I see a huge designer working on a nautical print too. Kinda hit me, ugh, don’t compare yourself to peers, your work has to compete with what’s already out there. But that’s okay. Ohn mar win is amazing and I love her work.

    Happy creating everyone!

  • SVS OG

    @NessIllustration thanks ness! Are you kidding, I would love to hear your advice about increasing traffic and Pinterest. My shop is WhitneySimmsStudio

    I think I need to break apart my name. I guess I was in instagram mode when I set up the shop. It’s still new. I need to polish it up. Any tips on that would be great too! Do you have a shop?

  • SVS Team SVS OG

    @Whitney-Simms thats awesome! keep plugging away and that needle will be moving more and more in no time.

  • Pro

    @Whitney-Simms I've been working on shops for a long time hahaha... I've tried Etsy shops several times, a big cartel shop, a redbubble shop... I've made a ton of mistakes along the way and learned from them, and over the last year I've gotten serious about making a shop that's a serious business and have done a LOT of research, tried a lot of things. Right now I'm working on the pre-launch of an Etsy shop that would sell clipart for crafters! I've been wanting to do it for years but was intimidated by the big amount of clipart listings you need to be successful and always tried to go for a quick buck with art prints instead ^^''' That was my biggest mistake of all, a clipart shop is my dream so now I'm doing it and I'm in it for the long haul! I've been working on this for months and trying to build my audience and email list while create my clipart inventory! It's been going so well, better than anything that I've ever tried in the past (picked up a lot of tricks along the way!) so I have a good feeling about this one and high hopes ❤

  • Pro

    @Whitney-Simms I checked out your shop! It's lovely ❤ ❤ ❤ Great work!

  • SVS OG

    @NessIllustration clip art shop shounds awesome. I love doing little spot items! Good luck building your inventory! Keep us posted. Yeah, it seems like I’ve half way tried a million shops or items. I’m with ya, this time I’m sticking with it and know my goals!

    Thanks for checking out my shop!

    @Chip-Valecek every little bit counts, right!

  • Pro

    @Whitney-Simms The great thing is, every successful artist/handmade shop owner I've ever heard of said they'd had a lot of failed shops before getting one that worked! So maybe we got the bad ones out of the way and we're ready for success now haha! It seems like you've had a breakthrough with figuring out pattern collections was the right fit, and I'm so happy for you ❤

  • @NessIllustration Congratulations! You starting your shop has inspired me to "get on it" and build--ok, let's be reasonable, at least research starting my own shop. Also, thank you Whitney for quotes... might have needed that today.

  • Pro

    @Laurasketches Yay! I always try to remember what @Will-Terry said in one of his videos: We artists, we often don't feel like we're "real" business people. We tend to think we don't have the knowledge or capacity to succeed in business and that we won't be taken as seriously as the people in business school. Yet WE already have something that THEY don't have: we have a PRODUCT! The know-how to sell it, we can easily learn (especially nowadays, so many free or cheap resources!). But finding/inventing a product to sell when you don't have one, THAT'S an uphill battle (and yet we take them more seriously than ourselves.. Why) We got this girls and boys! 😃

  • Pro

    @Laurasketches Also I wrote a blog post a while ago about my favourite free business/Etsy online resources, if you want check it out! https://nessillustration.com/2018/11/05/what-i-learned-in-one-month-about-running-an-etsy-shop-my-journey-through-5-free-resources/

  • @NessIllustration Thank you for your blog post! I will check it out. I think next month is the month for starting to sell print. (is there an emoji for nailbitting?)

  • SVS OG

    Okay, more than I baby step yesterday. I almost feel like its a fancy ballet leap! What's that called? A grand jete? Maybe that's what I wanted to do after my meeting.

    Ya'll know I updated the website with "for sale" items. Cool. Put on Facebook that my new notecard sets were for sale this week. Got 25 orders. For real. Can't believe that I got as many as the first time I offered cards after inktober. I thought I has exhausted my friend base. Many repeat buyers and many new ones. Thanks @demotlj 🙂

    Well, I had all these cards already printed. So, I had tons of samples. I was meeting a friend in our towns downtown area for lunch. I made a call to see if I could meet with the owners of this freaking adorable, uber chic yet southern, little eclectic shop. It's the kind of store to buy nice original gifts. Or just adorable things. Anyways, they LOVED my notecards. Loved the price point. I knew that I was coming in a little cheaper than what they sold things for. MY note cards are 8 in pack for $10 retail. They bought 5 of the designs with multiple sets of each design. I walked around the store with the owner and talked about trends in the market. He showed me what styles of things were selling. He commission 2 original pieces. One of the band stand, a place in fort mill that is iconic to the town, and the store front with a lady holding a bag in front of the shop. The last two I need to go over the details. The band stand will be printed on cards and the original and prints will be sold too. The store front will be used on their social media and website as well as cards and such. So the pricing may be tricky. I need to be professional when I deliver the cards and show a few sketches and then really narrow down the prices. Store identity is different than making cards out of a town icon.

    Y'AAAALLLLL. I just feel like this could be a jumping off point. I talked about the items that were in their shop and their companies. About licensing. They have sooooooo many connections to the companies and everything.

    Hopefully the notecards will do well. They said they sell a lot of stationary. So, that's a good thing. This is just a huge goal I have had for a while and I can't believe it actually happened. I wanted to sell my stuff in Crossing on Main in fort mill, SC. And now I am. Let's see if my work makes the cut for the buyers. They were excited about it. And that is good enough for me. MY head can barely fit through the dang door! AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH


    @NessIllustration what the heck! Great blog post! So helpful. Thanks for putting all those resources together. Your work is always charming. Good luck on your etsy shop. Let us know when it is up and running. I didn't see a link on your website for it.

  • Pro


    OMG girl congratulations!!! You're doing AMAZING!!!

    I checked out their site and it seems such a good fit for you! I'm sure your products will do well in this upper scale fine gifts niche!

    Also about the clipart shop, it's a completely different part of my business so I'm not planning on linking on my website. I want to make a completely different website and blog for this shop, separate 🙂 I'll drop the link here though if you guys want to see!

    Although you have inspired me with you great success with your friend base! I'm often not comfortable enough to use that and it's a shame, it's holding me back! So here it is: I've been trying to get my Facebook off the ground and having no luck. I'm doing great on Insta but don't understand Facebook at all haha... I'll work on that, but in the meantime if anyone wants to help out, here the poor struggling FB page: https://www.facebook.com/sweetsirenco/

  • Congrats! That is awesome... should be a great experience!

  • SVS Team SVS OG

    @Whitney-Simms thats amazing! congrats!

  • SVS OG

    @Whitney-Simms Congratulations!!! You're artwork is beautiful and you certainly deserve this audience for your designs. I'm so happy for you that you found a great fit in pattern design and that you stepped out and shared your work with the world. Yay for you!!!

  • Congratulations! You do beautiful work and great to see it being shared with the world. 🙂

  • SVS OG

    @Whitney-Simms I just received my notecards and they are beautiful. I got them as gifts but I’m not sure I want to give them away. Thanks so much!

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