How to Connect with Collectors – An Introduction

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Building a relationship with your audience is the key to creating collectors.

By Guest Contributor, Artist: Tia Sunshine Dye

Art is an expression of the soul. The process of creation is a gift to and from the artist, as well as a gift to the world. However, for professional artists, those who sell or hope to sell their artwork, connecting with an audience often means sharing more than their finished artwork. 

Some artists might believe that marketing is selling your soul, but it doesn’t have to be. How you connect with your audience can be a reflection of who you are. Whether you are concerned about oversharing, or you believe your artwork should speak for itself, there is a way for you to connect with your audience, build relationships, and create collectors. 

I recommend taking an honest look at who makes up your audience, and what your audience believes about art and artists. 

Many consumers have come to expect home decor trends to be offered to them on a seasonal basis by department stores. They do not realize how many accessible creators are in their own communities. They also do not realize the role they play in valuing artists and supporting small businesses. 

This year, inspired by the mission of Artists Sunday, I started a blog series with this goal:

Help my audience understand what it means to invest in, not just artwork, but artists.

I’ve shared with my audience through a series of artist features asking artists the following questions:

  • What do you really hope for your artwork?
  • Do you set goals? Many small goals, one large goal, both?
  • How long have you been purposely creating, and have your goals changed over time?
  • What made you decide to sell your art?
  • Does marketing or creating for an audience impact your creative process?
  • Was there original art in your home growing up? 
  • What inspired your creativity? 
  • Did you need permission to become a creator?
  • Why do you value your own artwork?
  • Are you ever afraid to share your art?
  • How do purchases of your artwork benefit you?

These are all valuable questions to ask yourself, as an artist. Write the answers down for yourself, and then consider what parts of your story can help you connect with your audience?

On the first Friday of each month, we will look more closely at some of these questions, one at a time. I am inviting Artists Sunday artists, partners, and patrons to discuss these questions. We will explore why these questions are important for you to consider, and how the answers can help you build trust and connection with your audience so you can create collectors.

If you are interested in being featured in one of my future Artists Sunday blog posts on this topic, click HERE and send a note with the subject ‘Sunshine Blog Feature’.


Tia Sunshine Dye is a watercolor artist connecting with others through art from her home studio in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Inspired by the mission of Artists Sunday, Tia Sunshine has been featuring other artists in a blog series titled, The Sunday Sunshine. With a BFA in Theatre Design and Technology and professional experience in set/lighting design, technical direction, and stage management, Tia Sunshine encourages collaboration in community to promote the visual expression of ideas. In that spirit, she believes people should be free to reinvent themselves frequently and with artistic purpose. Learn more about Tia Sunshine at www.TiaSunshine.Art

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