Your Work Displayed in Galleries

Let’s get it straight. This article is a straightforward easy guide for artists about how to get galleries to accept your work. The aim is to provide an easy-to-follow guide so you come across in a professional way and galleries have the confidence to sell your work. The guide does not specify what type of artist you need to be or what work you should be doing.

For owners of art galleries, the majority all of the time is spent responding to e-mails and speaking to artists who have the hope of a positive response. I have some gallery directors, and it’s evident that the majority of artists aren’t aware what galleries are looking for or what they do. What is most shocking to me is that many of these artists have finished the fine art program but still don’t know the first thing about approaching an art gallery.


Return or sale?

Many galleries will showcase your work on a return or sale basis. You send the work to the gallery and the gallery will show it, and upon the sale of the piece, the gallery earns a commission and then sends the rest to you. If the work doesn’t sell within the agreed time it will be delivered to your. Simple.


Commissions range from 20% up to 60 percent. Internet sites will offer the most affordable commissions but have the lowest overheads and also the lowest chance of selling your work. An artist called me to ask, what am I doing to earn my X %. You must understand that galleries are taking the biggest risk by exposing an artist. Owners put a huge amount of funds and time to building the gallery and if nothing sells the gallery will close, and there is no more business. Artists may need to invest some resources and time in but be very clear, the risk is on the gallery’s shoulders.


Do your homework.

You should determine which galleries are suited to showing your work. There is no point approaching a graffiti studio if you create traditional-looking landscapes. Visit the gallery and just have a browse through their website, and read the additional information on the gallery’s website. You can find out the kind of market it’s going to be targeting BEFORE you make any other decisions. Don’t inform the gallery you visit that you are an artist as you will not be prepared. Visit:-

Put together your portfolio

The only thing a gallery would like to see are your images. The amount of artists who are in the gallery and claim they’re an artist, but do not have anything to show me is astounding. Artists without art , eh? Perhaps even worse is showing me via what you are showing on your mobile phone. Do you think an artist of professional standing would show something as valuable in the mobile phone?

Select your Images

Choose four or five photos that best portray your personal style, and which are most commercial (sellable). Request a few people for their opinions about which images you should submit. There is likely to be some consensus about your best work, which may be different from the ones you’d picked.

Prepare your images

Be sure that the photos are of high quality and aren’t too large or too small (200k or 1.5mb is fine). Make sure you take digital photographs of your work in direct sunlight and bright light. Make sure you crop them to ensure you are left with the art and nothing else. If the work you’re working on has the appearance of a texture that doesn’t seem to be conveying and is hard to capture in a straight-forward shot , then try an close-up from the opposite angle.


If you own a website which is great, it’s even better when it’s clear and simple to navigate. Webhosting companies such as Mr Site offer very reasonably priced ways of getting an elegant and simple site that can show your work off to the highest level.

Don’t email the link for images that you’d prefer the gallery’s owner would rather not to see. Don’t be excuses for the link not being as good as it could be. Make sure you get it up to standards or do not send the link.

The e-mail/Letter

Personally, I prefer receiving images by e-mail but sending prints through the mail is an efficient (if costlier) way of grabbing the attention of gallery owners.

Don’t bring work in the gallery without asking. It’s happened before and is extremely awkward for both me and the artist when I can tell in less than a second whether the work is suitable to be displayed in the gallery.

Draft the e-mail/letter with a simple, concise and professional way. I will only read an e-mail that is long if the pictures are of a good quality, but I don’t really want an entire life story.

Introduce yourself. A couple of sentences on your background.

Make sure you state your intention The following should be the standard for any gallery that you approach. “I Frederick Blogs am looking for gallery representation and would like you to take a look at some of my work.”

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *