Over the last few years, as I've engaged with my local art community and built my art business, I've had dozens of engaging conversations with people in my area about marketing, production, and art. We've shared tons of ideas and built each other up as a small business owners and as artists.
And I always left these conversations feeling energized and a sense of being full of potential for growth. It was during a recent meeting that I realized I should be recording these for others who might want to make money with their art but don't know where to begin.
The name, Art for Profit's Sake, is inspired by a conversation I had with another artist two years ago. She asked me "Why do you make art?" My cynical self responded with "To Make money." She proceeded to point out that if that was really the case, I'd be doing something else, like Crypto mining or accounting.
She made a good point- it's the desire to create something that drives me, and the renumeration for it is a tangible reward for my hard work. That's what I hope to explore in the conversations that this podcast will provide.
My first episode is a conversation with Elizabeth Eleanor Davis, Black Abbey Studios, who has found success with her art in a more traditional manner via selling original paintings and prints of her originals.
I follow that up with a jump in the opposite direction with Madame Berry, GlitchBerry, who's business more closely resembles my own. We discussion finding products and building communities of fans through different social media avenues.
In an effort to prevent Gatekeeping, I am recording these episodes via Riverside.fm and editing the RAW audio files via Adobe Audition. Finally, the episodes are uploaded and distributed through Spotify for Podcasters. I plan on this being a weekly episode.
At this point, I'm completely new to each step of the process and hope to improve as I record more episodes. I've tried using my laptop's (Surface Pro Studio) and my Headphone's (Sony WH-100XM5) microphones and neither have sounded as good as I'd like, so I'll be shopping for a new mic soon.
I hope you enjoy learning about podcasting with me and I hope you enjoy these engaging conversation with how different artists have found success and avoided failure in their businesses.
Art for Profit’s Sake is a series of discussions with artists working at different stages of their business. It explores the entrepreneurship, successes, and failures that all artists go through when finding their niche and developing their income. It aims to break the myth of the polarity of starving artist vs international success and instead focuses on the hard work and constant learning that is required when your passion to create art drives your practicality.
Hosted by Nick Ribera (aka Chain Assembly), an artist, illustrator, and creator who’s been working in the small business art scene of St. Petersburg, Florida since 2016.
Episode 0 Transcript:
Hello everyone, my name is Nick and you may better know me as the artist behind Chain Assembly. This is going to serve as an episode zero of my podcast, so I just wanted to discuss a bit the places and things that brought me to this moment, the reasons why I decided to create this podcast, and kind of my history as a small business owner. So the-
The title of the podcast, Art for Profit's Sake, stemmed from a conversation I had with another local artist a few years ago. She had asked me, why do I make art? It's a silly question that artists often ask each other, and I had a pretty cynical response. It was, I do it because I like making a profit, I like making money. And she then responded with, if that was really the case, why wouldn't you do something a little easier? Like, I don't know, accounting or.. why didn't I major in business? And that made me realize that what I really love is the physical manifestation of people's desire to purchase my art. And that's the transactional experience that I go for. So that is kind of the theme of the podcast, finding out where different artists find the profit within their art business.
Now art businesses can range in tons of different sizes from a small part-time side gig you're just exploring, to being your full-time career and you being an incredibly successful artist who is known world over. So that's kind of what I wanted to discuss here, seeing how different people have run their businesses where they have found successes and where they have found failures. I first started my chain assembly business back in 2016 when I just started doing a few custom illustrations for local disc golf tournaments.
In fact, the name Chain Assembly refers to the top part of a disc golf basket. From that, I decided making own products and funding those through Kickstarter, selling them online, and that's pretty much what my business has turned into. I like to kind of think of it as a group of artists all working together to create different products, kind of like Mondo Publishing, but really it's just me. And I like creating art under the name Chain Assembly because that kind of shows my intent to grow into a larger organization.
That being said, throughout the process of this podcast, I'm going to be speaking to different people I've met online or I know locally as a expansion of conversations that I already have had regularly over the last few years. I'm a member of a few different artist organizations and I often find myself reaching out to other artists online who do similar things to me, just to have Zoom meetings, just to have conversations in person over coffee or beer, to see how they're doing, what they are doing, how they have found success. And it was just one of these recent conversations that I realized it would make sense for me to actually record this and use that as an opportunity to share some of this information with other people online who are maybe curious about how they can make money with their art.
I hope you join me on the ride of this podcast. I know I'm pretty excited about some of the things that we've discussed so far, and throughout the process of it I'll probably be giving out some little bits of information about things that have worked for me and have not worked for me. So my plan is to record an interview and then after that ends record an intro just as myself discussing what I learned from that discussion with the artist as well as some little tips I've picked up along the way.
And also in a sense of preventing any gatekeeping, I'm learning this podcasting world as I go through this. To give you a background on what I am planning. I have been recording these episodes through Riverside FM, which is at the starting plan, it's about $15 a month, but it looks like I'm pretty quickly going to have to upgrade to the version that is $24 a month. After I do the recording, I do a little bit of editing in Adobe Audition, which I'm also learning how to use one recording at a time. I just recently bought myself a Blue Yeti X microphone, which is what you're listening to me on. The first couple of episodes I recorded with different microphones that were not nearly as good, so bear with that audio. And I'm going to be distributing these through Spotify for podcasters, which has a lot of tools that help you engage with the audience. At the point of recording this, I have not published anything yet, so again, I will be learning that as we go along. I imagine I'll probably be updating this “Episode 0,” too, as time finds it necessary.
The musical interludes, intro music, closing music, all of that stuff, is provided by Old Romans. That is my friend David from Miami. He's recorded all of the music that I've used for all my Kickstarter projects and background music for some of the role-playing games I've designed. He's a fantastic music producer and I'm excited to have him on board with this project too.
To see my work, I am at ChainAssembly everywhere: ChainAssembly on TikTok, Facebook, Instagram. My website is www.chainassembly.com. And thank you very much for taking the time to listen to this episode zero, as well as any other following episodes I produce.