In posts on Thursday and Friday, I posed questions about your professional name: what you choose to use, the mistakes you might have made, and the problems you have encountered.
The big problem for many seems to be the decision to use three names, like these artists:
The venues showing their work seem to think they can drop the middle (maiden) name and it will be just fine. It’s not.
It’s your life, your career. You’re in charge. Insist on being treated as a professional.
- In every contract you have, write in that your work must be shown under your complete and professional name.
- When you ship or deliver a work, include a note that can’t be missed (on colored paper or in big red letters): "All work must be credited with my full name as follows: . . . "
- If mistakes are made and the middle name gets left out, don’t let it slide. Send an email, follow up with a phone call, and even put it in writing that you expect that to be changed immediately–per your contract and the letter you enclosed with the delivery. Write with kindness. Say you know it was probably an oversight, but you need for them to honor their commitment to showing your work in the best possible light. Remind the venue that you are a one-person operation and you must have control over your career and your legacy. It’s almost impossible to do that if your work is shown under multiple names–especially when many people might have your same name. It’s too easy to confuse you with someone else with a simple Google search.