Passive Income part 2

In my last post I talked about starting up a passive revenue stream.  I decided on Etsy as my first foray into this realm of potential new stream of income.  This began with creating multiple designs for digital printables which I uploaded to my shop on Etsy and are now available for downloading.  By having digital downloads, they will always be there for customers.  I don’t have to continually create new products like I would with original artwork.  This fit in perfectly with the idea of a passive income stream.  Etsy would do the work for me once I created the artwork and uploaded it.

Today I wanted to discuss what I’ve been learning about promoting on social media.  This is something that I never thought I would be getting into, but it is really REALLY useful for bringing in viewers, fans, and better yet, potential customers!  I watched many youtube videos and read many blog posts online to figure out the best strategy for my shop in particular.  I probably over-researched it, but I really wanted to do it right.  I went with Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter as my go-to social media trio.

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Facebook is something I’ve always used so that was easy to start up.  I just started up a new page via my personal Facebook page.  Facebook makes that pretty easy.  My shop’s Facebook page even has a shop now button connected to my Etsy page.  Pretty slick.  I use that to update people on new products, blog posts, and so on.

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Pinterest was a little different.  What I found out from a lot of reading and watching videos was that I should start off by building my boards first.  I needed to get plenty of pins up first before I started to follow others.  Otherwise I wouldn’t have a reason for them to follow me back.  Plus, I have pins that are connected to items in my shop within those boards which brings in potential new viewers and customers too.  I’ve only just started following people after taking a good amount of time building strategic boards.

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Twitter is another unique animal.  It’s kind of a hub where I show off new stuff on my other social media as well as my shop.  And you have to make sure you don’t under tweet or over tweet.  If you under tweet, you’ll be ignored and lose followers.  If you over tweet, you’re spamming and you’ll lose followers then too.  Mind you, I’m being more picky as a business than I would be if it were just a personal twitter account.  Being that I want to keep my viewers/fans/customers happy, I’m more careful with it.  If I were just being me with my artwork on there, I would be more relaxed.  But I’m all new to this, so we’ll see how my style of tweeting works out.

The other thing I wanted to briefly talk about was creating physical products from my Etsy artwork.  I looked at many different sites out there.  I started out with cafe press.com as I potential outlet for products.  It’s a site I’m familiar as I used them years ago.  But I wanted to look around and see what else was out there.  I came across society6.com and started a shop there.  I really liked how they looked.  They have a very high quality look and feel to their site and products.  It’s very artist-friendly.  They really get behind their artists and they have great customer service.

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I also got there right when they rolled out a new art uploading system.  Mind you, they’re still working out a few bugs, but overall it’s pretty slick.  I will say that it is up to you to promote your art and products.  That’s not really what they do.  But they do offer discounts that you can mention to you followers and link them back to it.

An example of one of my products on my Society6 shop page!

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In my next post, I’ll be going over some of the things I learned along the way while working on my Etsy and my Society6 shops.

Stay tuned!

Previous Post – Part 1

September Update – Passive Income part 1

Sometimes I feel like a hermit coming out of his cave when I write on here.  It’s been a while since I’ve written regularly and it’s because of having so much going on.

I’ve had a few big jobs that took up a lot of time.  One sculpting job in particular that I hope to show images of sometime in the near future.  That one has a non-disclosure agreement attached, so let’s cross our fingers that it isn’t too long until I can show the work.

The other big thing that I have been working on is trying to come up with some passive income.  I work in a business that is feast or famine.  As a freelance artist, many times work comes in bunches.  You could be without a job for a while and then, BOOM, tons of work from one or more clients.  Mind you, in the off-time you’re hustling to find new clients, update and upgrade your portfolio and use social media to get your name out there.  But, there always seem to be times of famine.  When that phone won’t ring, clients don’t have new work, and new clients aren’t biting.  In those times, I want to have money still coming in.  And that’s where passive income would fit perfectly.

Passive income?  If you don’t know what that is, passive income would be money that works for you.  Basically you don’t need to work for it to come in.  And I have been trying to come up with a number of ideas to create some.  I literally have over a dozen ideas, but I decided to use the lowest hanging fruit – the one that needed the least amount of work and could be implemented the quickest.  That was Etsy for me.

If you don’t know what Etsy is, Etsy is an online marketplace where handmade goods can be sold to anyone anywhere.  Handmade?  I know, sounds like work.  But they have a digital-printable section.  Basically, if you make something digitally and upload it to your shop on Etsy, it will be there forever, available for someone to download and print off themselves (hence the name ‘printable’).

I came up with some ideas that I thought would be both fun for me and also that I thought could sell.  My shop presently has 90 items available:

https://www.etsy.com/shop/DeepThoughtsByJosh

Another cool thing is that they just implemented a personalized business webpage for you if you want.  It’s not expensive and it’s pretty slick:

http://www.deepthoughtsbyjosh.com

One thing to keep in mind about passive income – setting it up is a LOT of ACTIVE work!  I’m talking full-time job and then some work.

In doing this, I’m starting up a new business.  One that will eventually need far less active attention (except for social media and uploading new products).  But eventually I’m hoping that this will be the first of my passive income revenue streams.

The next part of this will go over how I incorporated social media and physical products to my budding business.

Stay tuned!

Check out Part 2 here

Monstrous Sketch

A monstrosity warm-up digital sketch to show today.  I use clip studio paint for a lot of my digital work as it allows for quick, clean work.  I’m still playing around with the work-flow, but I like it.  It has a lot of tools, great line quality and I’m still discovering new things to play with on it!

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What’s your digital art program of choice?  Or are you traditional?

More to come.  Stay tuned!

Playing Catch Up

It’s been busy around here and I have a lot to share in the forthcoming weeks.  But for now I thought I would post a few images of some work I have done recently.

One piece I wanted to share was the newest in my stickman series.  This one is #6.  It’s based off of a photo that I came across.  I made a very rough pencil sketch and from there it was all tiny little stickmen – all done with a black .005 micron pen.  I gave it a simple black frame and, something new that I wish I had thought of from the beginning, a small magnifying glass.  I displayed it at the Pekin Days Art Show and received 3rd in the pen and ink category.  I also sold it!  Win-win!:

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A close up of the eye area:

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More work to show very soon.  Stay tuned!