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Student Blogger: Books that helped me understand the business of art

April 2, 2011

IllustrationBy Sarah Alfarhan

I have always been a bookworm, to the point where I expect everyone to be as obsessed with books as I am. I am constantly recommending books to others and I always have a pencil in hand to write down book titles that have been recommended to me. I enjoy every genre (mostly children’s and history). But in this post, I am going to write about books that have helped me in understanding the business side of being an artist.

Out of all the business related books that I have read, two books stand out to me — and I go back to them frequently.

2011 edition‘Artist’s & Graphic Designer’s Market’

Published by Writer’s Digest Books

This book includes lists of publishers, galleries, artist’s reps, interviews and articles. I own the copy from 2010, but there’s a 2011 copy that I’ve seen in bookstores. The information is up-to-date, and most importantly, the book is easy to use.  For those looking to send promo postcards to magazines or book publishers, this is the book you need! The lists include addresses, phone numbers and, in some cases, what the art director prefers to receive from an illustrator or a designer.

by Paul Arden‘It’s Not How Good You Are, It’s How Good You Want To Be’

By Paul Arden

This is more of an inspirational book to me. The marketing and advertising strategies are priceless. For a cheap little book, this is one of my favorites. Not only will you get wisdom and encouragement out of it, but it’s also beautifully designed!

What are your favorite career books? Which books do you usually recommend to people starting out in your field?

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Karen Atkinson April 2, 2011 at 3:05 pm

I am incredibly biased since I am the author, but if you want a book without alot of personal ra ra, spiritual guidance or personal annecdotes, and need a good reference book, Getting Your Sh*t Together, a professional practices manual for artists has over 400 pages of vital information for artists, from writing a kick ass artist statement, to business of art issues, like how to get a business license, fundraising without writing grants, bartering and trading laws, legal issues, how to approach galleries and much more. Available at link below or Amazon.

But if you are totally broke, and need to know how to get a job, then check out our website for free resources and information at Over 500 pages of business of art content, as well as software, and GYST Radio.

Free Resources:


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