Tuesday, June 23, 2009

EtsyLounge: Why?

Last night while finishing up this necklace for Piacere, I slipped into a funk. Yesterday I blogged ten Etsy artists, most of whom receive little attention on Etsy despite obvious talent. Four bothered to respond. Time to take a breath and consider if devoting 2 hours of my day to this is truly worthwhile.

Four primary reasons I feel this blog is worthwhile:
1. Raising the bar: Etsy is inundated with crafts that simply do not meet artistic criteria. My opinion, and I realize craft and handmade has its own valid ethic. Art, however, too often gets lost in the crowd on Etsy. I realize this is a volatile, debatable issue and I may not make friends by publicly sharing my biased viewpoint.
2. Creating Karma: Internet search engines give high priority to incoming links. By providing artists with links from this blog, I help boost odds that their work will eventually make it to the first 3 pages (top 30) searches on Google and Yahoo. I am only one person, but I want to contribute in my small way to promote the best of Etsy. If others participate and reciprocate, the karma (buzz) will grow, potentially exponentially. That goal is achievable only if blog visitors & followers participate by commenting, chiming in, telling friends to visit, etc.
3. My Own Very Personal Interest: Yes, within the motive to raise the bar is the potential benefit to myself. I believe in the work I've been doing for over 20 years, and am committed to excellence in my own products and creations. Just like we all want to be in the best galleries, I too want to my work to be in good company.
4. Fun and Inspiration: It is simply fun to discover and interact with other talented artists. As artists, we all know the feeling of isolation and myopia when we focus so intently on our own work that we exclude the energy of other artists from our awareness.
Some words about SEO (Search Engine Optimization) If you are unfamiliar with this, I recommend going to Timothy Adams Town Hall Meeting, and these emptyeasel.com articles about SEO for artists and about Page Rank. I'm still learning, and I find these tutorials helpful.
Patience is the main thing to bear in mind with all SEO efforts. It takes time for the seedlings to sprout. Sow the seeds, nurture the plants and you will gradually see the rewards for your efforts.


KCR Lehr Studio said...

Please don't be discouraged. Few people know blogging courtesy or even have a Google account.

You are extremely talented and your art advocacy is admirable. I have been an art educator at the college and high school level for over 35 years and I have tried every means to advance the arts so I am so very excited about meeting people like you. Your energy, commitment and talents are so vital.

Stay strong Girl! You rock!


KCR Lehr Studio said...

Andria, I just went back and instead of just looking at my favorite designs in the artists' shops, I took the time to send each of them a message saying that I saw their work on ETSY Lounge and congratulated them on having their works selected. Maybe that will help all of us see the value of this site in making contacts.

And.. each contact benefits the whole artisan community.

Andria said...

Colleen, I really appreciate your support and taking action on this effort! This is exactly the kind of partcipation that helps boost the views for the talented artists featured in this lounge.

You rock! Every artist in this lounge owes you a big thank you!

Lenox Knits said...

I do get what you are saying. I'm always surprised when I don't get a simple thanks for featuring an artist on my blog. I spent a lot of time picking out items to showcase as well but I agree that some people just don't get it. You have a very lovely blog and I found you through twitter.

Sherry Goodloe said...

Oh Andria, thank you so much for including my graffiti tags in your lounge! I so appreciate the artistic compliment :)

Andria said...

Sherry, You are most welcome! And thanks Lenox Knits for your supportive comment. I'll go visit your blog right now! (I agree a simple thanks goes a long way. The people who get on board and involve themselves in these efforts to advance good art are the ones who take credit for everybody's success. A couple minutes a week from followers is all it takes to advance the cause!)

Chris Kapono said...

You know, at first I did not realize that this was the efforts of one woman! I saw 'Etsy Lounge' and thought it was sponsored by Etsy. Now I do see that it says you are not affiliated with Etsy. (enter sheepish grin here) I want to thank you again for featuring my wearable art pin. I was so happy and did not even realize it was featured here until someone congratulated me!
Don't be discouraged!

Andria said...

Hi Chris, Thanks for re-visiting and I appreciate your comments. It is very encouraging to know you got some extra notice for your work because of the feature, which affirms this blog is doing something good to promote true excellence on Etsy. Not that there isn't a place for all manner of craftiness on Etsy regardless of talent or originality, but it can be discouraging for so many etraordinary artists to remain anonymous while watching the same crafters be promoted repeatedly on Etsy's front page.