In my last post, I made the case that your blog is a gold mine for you.
What I didn’t say is that it’s only a gold mine if you are consistently committed to blogging and to improving with each post. You can only fulfill this commitment with rich content.
But what do you write about and where do you find it? It’s probably not under the wood boards of the deck, but you never know.
On pages 143-44 of I’d Rather Be in the Studio, I lay out 32 specific ideas for newsletter or blog post content. But before you can make that list useful to you, you must know your purpose.
Who Are You Writing For?
What you write about will depend on your goals as an artist.
How do you want to position yourself? Who do you want to read your blog?
The answers to these questions are necessary before you trust the resources for content that I share below.
Listening to Find Content
The most important tip I can give for finding good content is to listen up. Listen – depending on your goals – to what the following people are saying in conversation:
- Your collectors
- Your students
- Your artist-friends
- People commenting on your blog
- Your Facebook friends and fans
- People you follow on Twitter
How could you help them solve their problems with a blog post?
How could you piggyback on a trending topic?
How could you enlighten them about your work?
While you always want to be responsive to your community, you also want to be part of a bigger dialogue around art.
Think like a journalist looking for her next assignment. Be present for conversations and capture everything you think has potential.
You’ll uncover infinite possibilities in the following situations:
- Artist talks and art lectures
- Art films and documentaries
- Lectures, films, and books related to your niche market
- Books about art and artists
- RSS feeds from other blogs
Not to spoil the party, but don’t be alarmed if you later toss out 95% of your potential ideas. It’s part of the process.
What’s most crucial is that you don’t let the 5% of ideas disappear into the ethers.
My Favorite Places for Finding Content
Most of my blog posts and social media updates come from these sources:
- Your comments on my blog posts
- Your questions
- Conversations with artists at openings and studios or over coffee
- Zite or Flipboard (personal “magazine” apps for my iPad)
- Artist talks and lectures
If you’re soaking up the potential around you, you’ll collect content that will keep your blog well fed for years.