In art licensing, manufacturers want to see groups, or collections, of art more than stand alone pieces.
A collection is a coordinated group of images and/or patterns that can be mixed and matched to create full product lines that sell in stores and online. Think about throwing a party – either with fine china or paper plates – would you want the same exact image on everything or a little variety to make it more interesting? Variety of course! And it’s up to the artists to provide that for the manufacturers.
Here’s a video I created to show you how to think about collections….
How an artist goes about creating these collections seem to fall into two categories – those who take a ‘fine art approach’ – creating painting that could be put in a frame and hung on the wall. The type of art that easily lends itself to gallery sales, for example. The other way is to start with icons and build to a scene or image digitally. Art can either be done by hand or completely digitally – there are both types of artists successfully licensing their work.
Artists who paint completed images use four coordinating pictures as the building blocks of a collection. For example, four different but coordinating snowman paintings would make up a winter or holiday collection. The artist could make the collection more easily applied to products by creating coordinating borders and repeat patterns, using elements from the four base images, to fill out the collection.
An alternate way of creating art collections is to start with individual icons as the building blocks. The icons can then be combined to create scenes (similar to the four painted images above), borders and repeat patterns.
Creating collections means thinking about the bits and pieces a manufacturer would need to create a product. When manufacturers see that you understand and can provide what they need, you are more likely to get an art licensing deal.
– Tara Reed
P.S. To learn more about the basics of Art Licensing and decide if it might be a fit for you and your art, I recommend you take a look at the “Beginner Basics Audio” or the eBook, “How to Get Started in Art Licensing”.