#Hashtag Art

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What’s exciting about all of this #ARTING I’ve been doing since I can remember, and a teeny bit ironic is how the art market has radically changed as predicted back in art school. They warned us, those hippie art professors, back when I dipped my brush in turpentine, gathered up some oil paint and attempted to express myself on canvas. I was a artist then, still am.

Now artists have direct and unfiltered access to the public without vetting of the work. The internet has fixed that. This could be the fun part, artists can do what they want to do and damn the gate keepers. The internet is their oyster. The ironic part is art that has a hashtag pointing to their specific site usually gets the call. And there is no filter for exaggeration or outright untruths. The noise is deafening at times, sorting out the work to the satisfaction of the client can be daunting and risky. It takes guts to make a decision on a work that doesn’t exist yet and will be a permanent expression of your decision.

So how does the artist balance honing their skills, make the art and also curry favor on the internet? And how aggressive does the artist have to be in order to drown out the noise of the other competitors? Hiring a computer expert to kick your site up the ladder on Google is one method. Another is to join the art clubs who then publish your website along with all the others when you type in a query on the internet. This can be a thorny thicket to tread into since access accorded to artists vying for membership can be jealously controlled by other artists who are very aware that letting in a competitor can diminish their position on the ladder of internet access.

I guess I’m old school. Yes, competition is good, but I’ve seen it work to the detriment of the resulting work. Many artists have slick presentations, slick art, slick ideas, and resulting slick art. As art has collided with slick marketing don’t get me wrong, I’m as competitive as the next artist; but, I find the amount of time spent on clinching the job leaves less for the creative part of it. The creative path is littered by all sorts of obstacles. One of which is called #hashtag. Go figure hippie professors you were right all along, things will get #radical.