Writing an artist bio

7 tips on writing your artist bio

Art lovers are always asking for more information about artists they like. Usually because artists tend to ignore the importance of their profile. I can’t stress the importance of including information about yourself enough: where you studied, exhibition history and an artist biography.

Although photos of yourself are optional, collectors love to get an idea of the artist behind the work, so forget being camera shy, I highly recommend that you do include one. A photo of you in your studio is perfect for your profile page, and they are especially of interest to art lovers, collectors and the public.

1. What skills do you have?
Start by telling your audience about your area of expertise. Do you have a formal education in the arts or art history? Where and when did you study, perhaps emphasising particularly inspiring classes that you took, prizes and awards you’ve won; exhibitions that you’ve taken part in; and collections (both private and public) that include your work.
Emerging artist or no formal education? It’s astounding how many prolific artists were and are self-taught. Take this opportunity to talk about what lead you to be an artist, sometimes it’s the little things that art lovers connect with, like where you draw your inspiration from, or why you paint the subject matter you paint.

2. What experience do you have?
Do you have a mentor that inspires you? Share with your audience the artists that have influences on your artwork.

Perhaps you prefer to create in the solitude of your studio, inspired by the nighttime hours like many an artist. Share a little about your hands-on experience as an artist to let your fans get to know you a little better. Whether you started at an early age and have collected years of experience or if inspiration struck later in life.

3. What inspires you?
Are you driven to create by a passion for colour and beauty? Are you a fan of Picasso or a Pollock, Kahlo or O’Keefe, perhaps Leonardo da Vinci is the one? Tell your audience who inspires you. Your audience will better understand what influences you by referencing famous artists or real-life events. It will also reveal quite a bit about your own artistic personality, which is the entire purpose of your artist biography.

4. Why do you create?
Passion is infectious and this is your opportunity to connect with your fans. Why are compelled to create? 

Did you experience hardship and find comfort in art? If you feel comfortable doing so, I encourage you to share tour story. Not only is it a great way to connect with them but it may also inspire someone to share a story of their own. 

5. Do you have highlights?
What has been your proudest moment as an artist? Have you displayed your artwork at an art gallery or exhibition? Now is the time to celebrate those accomplishments.

Perhaps you received a compelling review, something that you could include as a quote or testimonial within your bio. Perhaps you’ve won some awards or have been featured in a blog post or podcast. However big or small let people know about them. Include any accomplishments or achievements.

6. Proofing and presentation
Even though your artistic skills may be best demonstrated in a drawing or painting, is no excuse for a half thought out bio, now is the time to piece it all together.

Aim to keep your bio to one page with a simplistic font easy to read font. A good font size should be between 12 and 14 pts, no smaller than 12. Have a friend or family member proof read your bio to make sure there are no spelling mistakes and that it’s easy to read. Now it’s time to put it to work.

7. Spread the word
There is no point writing a great bio and keeping it to yourself, you need to tell people. Get your bio up on your website and social pages (Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, etc) and anywhere where you are talking about or promoting your artwork. 

Share a snippet in your Instagram bio to get interest from potential followers. Share it on your blog. The more you spread the word, the better.

Be sure to review your bio yearly and keep it up-to-date.