What Makes a Famous artist?

What makes an artist famous?

Is it because you have natural talent, brilliant artistic flair? Have an impressive portfolio for gallery acceptance. Have the right composition format. Your paintings have impact and your style is unique.


What do you think makes an artist famous?

  • Do you think having the right connections helps?  Friends or family who owns a gallery? You have a `bishop’ (sponsor) that believes in your talent or you have a great PR agent?
  • Do you think it is okay to be self-taught or have attended university, had the opportunity to go to prestige art colleges in Europe, or trained by a famous artist in Paris?
  • Had a talented background: Won art prizes while at school and internationally. Have a list of noteworthy galleries on your CV where you exhibited at.
  • Having plenty of capital to back your talent, like owning your own gallery and paying for regular advertising?
  • Lucky to have a fascinating out-going character. Be able to tell great stories and experiences to divulge on TV?
  • Being in the right place at the right time?
  • Belong to a renowned prestige art group or painted a famous celebrity’s portrait commission?
  • Media platform: Published art books and magazines or seen doing impressive demos on YouTube.

Artistic flair:

Over and above knowledge of composition rules, the artist must have free aesthetic expression and unique style. Fussy detail and neat sharp contours is a sign of an amateur.

Social networking:

Observe edict policies before joining art groups. But that doesn’t stop you building your own social group with other like-minded artists. And as to your personality –you must be an interesting person to interview, know what you are talking about, without coming across as pushy and aggressive.


Your background and connections do count to some degree. But if you are self-taught (done a lot of research) paint often and your talent is really good, it’s likely that someday someone, somewhere, will believe in your art too. If you persist and market your art frequently. Believe in yourself. Life is what you make of it.

Seen doing your thing:

No one knows you are a good artist unless they see your talent! It’s great to have your own gallery but you need time to produce your artwork. People like to watch artists doing demos or painting out on location, like painting along the sea-shore, doing stage production props or restaurant murals, etc. This gives you the opportunity to be a `big fish in a small pond’ before been accepted as a `great big whale out at sea’.

Celebrity commissions:

It’s not easy getting celebrity portraits unless the standard of your work is well-known. And you have examples of your work to show agents. When meeting with the celebrity and actually doing their portrait, don’t waste their time, be fully prepared with the right equipment, colour swathes, etc before you or they arrive.at the appointed venue.

Prosperity beliefs:

Most people believe an artist isn’t a good artist unless he or she dresses weird! Some people like ethnic art and think the in-thing is for an artist to live in a hut. On the other hand some believe success is seen as having a posh car and house. Art is an expensive career, so shouldn’t matter where you live. The superiority of your talent should count!

Do you agree with any of these statements?

What do you think? Have you something to add? Looking forward to your comments, whether you are an artist or not. Maybe you have a success story of your own to share with us, what you did to put yourself out there?