There are numerous ways in the web 2.0 world to make money online with your art and illustrations. Many of the methods I will outline will also double for crafts and photography, but this primer is focused on traditional paper/canvas art and illustration. Both fine art (the fancy stuff) and simple illustration can make you money online two ways–selling it outright, or licensing it. There are many great websites that can help you accomplish either:
Your own website: Although you could certainly make money with your art without it, I highly recommend having your own website to showcase your portfolio whether or not you are just an amateur dabbling in selling & licensing
art such as myself, or certainly if you are a professional who is looking to support themselves entirely with income from artworks. As artists promoting ourselves, a website will act as a home base linking all our social networks to sell art, and as well to display works, and some information about ourselves. A good art portfolio site might very well even have an e-commerce platform from which to sell works. There are many e-commerce platforms available, I recommend Shopify and Storenvy, and purchasing a dot com domain name and web hosting through Bluehost. Bluehost is pretty hassle free, and in my opinion the best blend of: cheap, easy to use, and good customer service when there is a problem.
You can also self-host a site using wordpress or tumblr which also require no web coding knowledge. Sites like wordpress one use “themes”, search for “art portfolio themes”.
There are literally hundreds of websites to sell your art through, but I will go over some of the better ones.
- ebay -> the site that started out for people to sell collectibles and knickknacks, is still a great place for selling art. Although they don’t specialize in art, you may already be familiar with the site, and it has a huge market of people looking for art on it. Works can either be listed as a fixed price “Buy Now”, or be put up for auction.
- Etsy.com -> is specializes in all “artsy” and handmade things, and this certainly includes your fine art and illustration; whether it be on paper, canvas, or a porcelain bowl. Etsy can connect you with a staggeringly big art market, and is great to use for carving out a niche. I recommend the book on the right.
- TopHatter.com->is another auction site for selling goods that can be useful for artists.
- Artiscle->is an open platform for artists to sell their work, that is based on the communities that the artists each come from. It is a clean and easy to use website.