Publishing old work

For the month of May I’ve been going through all of my drawings and writing a small blog post for each of them.

A long while back I lost all of my blog posts published before 2014. Thanks to a glitch when I was migrating my site into a new WordPress theme. Bummerzzz!

So I dedicated the month of May to finally re-write all those old blog posts from before 2011. A task I’ve been dreading, but has turned out to be more fun than I thought.

All I’m really doing is making a single 100-300 word blog post for each sketchbook page or illustration.

Depending on each piece, I’m focusing the subject of the post on either the process or what the story of the image is about. Keeping everything really simple and straightforward.

It’s actually turned out to be a pretty refreshing process. A process I’m already seeing a lot of benefits from:

Writing 1,000+ words a day
I used to have this habit nailed down – starting each day with writing. I’ve found writing about whatever it is you do helps you understand your work at a deeper level. When you aren’t sure what to write about, just start writing without worrying about editing, grammar, or spelling. The ideas will start to flow. The act of writing is an exercise to help you figure out your ideas are, you don’t need to know your idea fully before you start to write.

More traffic to my site
I’ve been publishing 4-5 new posts a day just to catch-up on all these old blog posts I lost. I haven’t shared any of them on social media or really told anyone about them. Amazingly, without any promotion, I’ve seen a huge boost in traffic to my site. Remember, Google can’t read images, only words. With this boost in content, it seems Google is finding my site more relevant for people searching things like wildlife art, sketching, and illustration.

Putting all your art to work for you
Having a record to thoughts and work published in the form of blog posts online keeps my business running. Even though some of my posts are just quick write-ups on what I was thinking about or a breakdown of my technical process – they’re still driving traffic to my website. Which is helping my business run. This traffic means more email sign-ups and client inquiries. So those old images that aren’t necessarily portfolio worthy are still benefiting my business in the long run.

Getting closer to finishing my first art book
I’m creating a book collection of my past drawings. I want an art product that I can keep selling again and again. Books are great for this – even more so than prints. Going through my past work has helped me see how my style and subject matter has evolved into different directions. Possibly branching off into different themes to the point where I could make more focused book collections of my work.

Each drawing is a culmination of years of work.​ This process of having all my work published and available on my blog for anyone to learn about just feels good. I don’t like having work hiding somewhere for no one to see.

If publishing them can provide inspiration, teach, or create a connection for someone to collect them – then this work of going through and re-publishing each blog post is forever valuable.

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