June 2017

Fresh Approaches to Winning Commissions

It’s the issue that almost every creative practitioner struggles with at one time or another: gaining access to commissions and finding opportunities to exhibit work.

Immersed as you are in the creative process, it easy to be reactive when it comes to the commercial side of what you do - watching and waiting for information flagging up opportunities is the default position. Sometimes though, you can drive the agenda.

In this workshop, Jane Shaw of Durham Creatives and visual artist Jo Coupe will describe how they have developed new opportunities for themselves and other artists to exhibit and sell their works by adopting a fresh approach to commissioning. They will share their insights about how artists can get a foot in the door and make sure people take notice of them, drawing on examples of unheralded practitioners who’ve developed strategies to break through and make a success of their careers.

Jane will follow this with an ideas generation workshop to help you think about how you too can maximise your own chances of success in building relationships with commissioners and getting your work shown or performed.

Jo Coupe is a visual artist, working across sculpture, installation, video, sound and photography. Her work in public and private collections and she is represented by Workplace Gallery, Gateshead. Recent projects have included: Crystalline Energy, a residency with global aluminium producer, Rio Tinto Alcan (UK), and Rarified, a commission for Tatton Park Biennial (Cheshire, UK). Solo exhibitions include The Ashes of Other Elements, Workplace Gallery (Gateshead, UK), A Distance between Two Points, Airspace Gallery (Stoke on Trent, UK). Group exhibitions include Pertaining to things Natural, Chelsea Physic Garden (London, UK), Aid and Abet (Cambridge, UK) and David Dale Gallery (Glasgow, UK) Satellite Satellite, Workplace Gallery (London, UK) and A Foreign Encounter, Gallerie FOE (Munich, Germany).

Jane Shaw is the manager of the Arts Council England Fifth Sized Book Adventure. She is a Laban School trained dancer who ran her own dance business for seven years. She subsequently completed an MA in Entrepreneurship at Durham University and has over 20 years’ experience of delivering enterprise programmes for artists and creative practitioners across the region. Jane’s recent work includes Durham Creatives, a programme which worked with over 500 creative practitioners and resulted in the creation of 80+ new creative businesses. In partnership with Durham Light Infantry Museum and Art Gallery, Jane devised and managed Always Remember, Never Forget. This project, part-funded by the Arts Council, was designed to support artists create new work inspired by the museum’s collection in response to the anniversary of the First World War.

This professional development workshop is for emerging artists and other creative practitioners looking to commercialise their work. It has been funded by  Arts Council England and Newcastle City Library.

To reserve your place click: Fresh Approaches to Winning Commissions

When: 29 June 2017 / 10:30 AM - 1:00 PM

Where:Newcastle City Library

The Power of the Website

This workshop will be delivered by Polly Westergaard from Design Network North, a membership organisation promoting the creative talent in the region and highlighting the value of good design.

Instead of the yellow pages everybody now turns to Google, not just to find the businesses they need but also to find the answer to questions they want answered. The importance of having a website is therefore becoming imperative to businesses. During this workshop Polly will help you to explore how best to get your business online. She will also help you to identify what you need from your website, and how can you make it work best for you? Looking at the features and content you should have on a website and exploring the basic rules of web design and ways in which you can get your site up and running.

Whether your website needs updating, you want to build your own or you want to bring in an expert to do the job for you, this workshop will help you to identify your needs from you website, so that it works for you.

To reserve your place click The Power of the Website

When: 29 June 2017 / 2:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Where:Newcastle City Library

Valuing Yourself: Costing and Pricing your Work

Creative people often undervalue their time in comparison with other professionals. We’ll be looking at how to set a daily or hourly rate and, using your own work as the starting point, unravel the knotty issue of how to value your artwork for sale.

We’ll consider the factors you need to take into consideration when you put a price on your work and you’ll begin to build a pricing strategy. One of those factors is possible representation by a gallery or agent so we’ll explore what representation entails, what you might expect and how such relationships should be managed.

This will be a practical workshop that will put a value on something that you’ve already created.

The session will be run by Jo Coupe, a visual artist, working across sculpture, installation, video, sound and photography. Jo’s work is rooted in an ongoing investigation into impermanence and decay for which research acts as a starting point.

Jo was born in Stoke on Trent in 1975 and studied at Newcastle University and Goldsmiths College. Recent projects have included: Crystalline Energy, a residency with global aluminium producer, Rio Tinto Alcan (UK), and Rarified, a commission for Tatton Park Biennial (Cheshire, UK). Solo exhibitions include The Ashes of Other Elements, Workplace Gallery (Gateshead, UK), A Distance between Two Points, Airspace Gallery (Stoke on Trent, UK). Group exhibitions include Pertaining to things Natural, Chelsea Physic Garden (London, UK), Easy Does it touring to Supercollider (Blackpool, UK), Aid and Abet (Cambridge, UK) and David Dale Gallery (Glasgow, UK) Satellite Satellite, Workplace Gallery (London, UK) and A Foreign Encounter, Gallerie FOE (Munich, Germany).

Jo has work in several public and private collections and is represented by Workplace Gallery, Gateshead. She lives and works in Gateshead, UK.

This professional development workshop is for emerging artists and other creative practitioners looking to commercialise their work. It has been funded by Arts Council England and Newcastle City Library.

To reserve your place click: Valuing Yourself

When: 27 June 2017 / 2:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Where:Newcastle City Library

The Art of Networking!

No business is an island. In every facet of starting up you’ll be dealing with other people’s expectations so you'll need strategies to network them into your plans.

 We’ll consider the roles played in the life of a creative business up by everyone with an interest, from family to funders, curators to commissioners, agents to audience. Business success is ultimately a reflection of how well you manage these relationships.

 You’ll discover how to build extensive networks and examine the strategies creative entrepreneurs use to get people who really matter on board.

In this practical workshop you will:

  •     identify the tasks you need to complete to launch or grow your business
  •     consider who might help you achieve these tasks and what exchanges will take place
  •     develop strategies for gather information about opportunities 
  •     explore how collaborations can help you innovate
  •     learn how to widen your networks

This professional development workshop is for emerging artists and other creative practitioners looking to commercialise their work. It has been funded by Arts Council England and Newcastle City Library.

To reserve your place click Art of Networking

When: 20 June 2017 / 2:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Where:Newcastle City Library

Collaborate and Thrive

This practical session will explore the advantages and challenges of working with other creative practitioners, using examples from the practice of Jo Coupe, who will run the session, and those of her friends and colleagues.

We will look at how to find your voice in a group situation and work effectively with other people. Through a practical exercise, you’ll discover an understanding of your particular skills and what you can bring to a collaboration. We’ll also discuss how to get the most out of collaborating with people from other non-creative fields and what kind of opportunities are available for exploring this kind of activity.

Jo is, a visual artist, working across sculpture, installation, video, sound and photography. Jo’s work is rooted in an ongoing investigation into impermanence and decay for which research acts as a starting point.

Jo was born in Stoke on Trent in 1975 and studied at Newcastle University and Goldsmiths College. Recent projects have included: Crystalline Energy, a residency with global aluminium producer, Rio Tinto Alcan (UK), and Rarified, a commission for Tatton Park Biennial (Cheshire, UK). Solo exhibitions include The Ashes of Other Elements, Workplace Gallery (Gateshead, UK), A Distance between Two Points, Airspace Gallery (Stoke on Trent, UK). Group exhibitions include Pertaining to things Natural, Chelsea Physic Garden (London, UK), Easy Does it touring to Supercollider (Blackpool, UK), Aid and Abet (Cambridge, UK) and David Dale Gallery (Glasgow, UK) Satellite Satellite, Workplace Gallery (London, UK) and A Foreign Encounter, Gallerie FOE (Munich, Germany).

Jo has work in several public and private collections and is represented by Workplace Gallery, Gateshead. She lives and works in Gateshead, UK.

This professional development workshop is for emerging artists and other creative practitioners looking to commercialise their work. It has been funded by Arts Council England and Newcastle City Library.

To reserve your place click: Collaborate & Thrive

When: 13 June 2017 / 10:30 AM - 1:00 PM

Where:Newcastle City Library

The Power of the Brand

This workshop will be delivered by Polly Westergaard from Design Network North, a membership organisation promoting the creative talent in the region and highlighting the value of good design.

A brand is not just a logo...

This workshop will help to highlight the importance of a strong brand whilst helping you to discover your own brand identity. By exploring the importance of branding and how to effectively apply a brand identity to your business. Polly will help you identify your brand message and learn how to implement this in order to help your business grow.

To reserve your place click: Brand Power

When: 13 June 2017 / 2:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Where:Newcastle City Library

Applying for Funding for the Arts

We’re delighted to have teamed up with Lucy Jenkins, freelance curator and Durham County Council’s Visual Arts Programme Manager, to uncover the mysteries of applying for arts funding. Lucy will provide an overview of current funding agendas and buzzwords and then focus on Arts Council England’s Grants for the Arts programme using examples of successful applications as a basis for some practical work in completing an application.

Lucy has over twenty years’ experience as an art curator and fundraiser. She has worked with both historic art collections and contemporary artists and successfully raised funds from the lottery, public funding sources, trusts and foundations, and corporate sponsorship in both the arts and community and voluntary sectors. Recent work includes the curation of a number of interdisciplinary projects including Coming of Age: the Art and Science of Ageing (Great North Museum, Newcastle 2011 and GV Art, London) and The Great North Build (Great North Museum, Newcastle).

This professional development workshop is for emerging artists and other creative practitioners looking to commercialise their work. It has been funded by Arts Council England and Newcastle City Library.

To reserve your place click: Applying for Funding for the Arts

When: 12 June 2017 / 10:30 AM - 1:00 PM

Where:Newcastle City Library

Winning Winning Customers and the Art of Selling Art

Customers are the lifeblood of any business. Until you have customers you only have costs but trying to sell to everybody is bad business practice - some customers are more trouble than they’re worth!

In this workshop, you’ll develop strategies to find those customers you’d really like to hook and learn how an understanding of their needs can help you generate sales.

You’ll develop a better understanding of which market places you should target and we'll put in you in your customers' shoes to help you see the benefits you can offer from their perspective. This will help you gauge the potential scale of your business and shape the development of your marketing strategy.

Having identified your customers, we’ll look at what people really buy when they make a purchase, and the do’s and don’ts of selling.

 We'll look at:

  •     the features and benefits of your work from a customer’s perspective
  •     defining your unique selling proposition
  •     developing your advertising campaign
  •     product and service placement
  •     the principles and techniques of visual merchandising
  •     pricing your work
  •     routes to market

This professional development workshop is for emerging artists and other creative practitioners looking to commercialise their work. It has been funded by Arts Council England and Newcastle City Library.

To reserve your place click: Winning Winning Customers

When: 12 June 2017 / 2:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Where:Newcastle City Library

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Funded By

Durham County Council Altogether Wealthier