New Boutique Artist Orientation

Congratulations on being accepted into the Urban Arts Gallery boutique! This article will walk you through getting your products gallery-ready, submitting your inventory, and our gallery agreement. There’s a lot of information, but don’t worry, we’ll walk you through the process step by step.

STEP 1: GETTING YOUR PRODUCTS GALLERY-READY

LABEL YOUR PRODUCTS

Before you bring your work into the gallery you’ll need to label all of your products with the following information.

  1. Title of the piece
  2. Price of the piece
  3. Your artist name or business name 
  4. Dimensions

There are some exceptions to this. If your product can’t be labeled without causing damage, don’t worry, just let us know and we’ll come up with a solution together. A good example of this would be postcards, which can’t use a sticker or a string tag. 

Another exception is T-shirts and apparel. We have special barcode tags that we’ll have to pin to these items regardless, so you don’t need to individually label them.

If you have questions about labeling your items, please let us know, we’ll do our best to accommodate the specific needs of your products.

POLICIES FOR PRINTS AND WALL ART

Art Prints MUST be placed in a plastic sleeve with a backing board or mat, or else they’ll be floppy and won’t look very nice on a shelf or easel. They’ll also be more vulnerable to damage. You can acquire these supplies at Clearbags.com, Peterson Art Center in Sugarhouse, Pak n’ Wrap in Sandy, and other art supply and packing stores.

Wall art should have hanging hardware on the back. Wires are almost always the best choice, but sawtooth hangers and d-ring hangers are also good options.

Canvases should have hardware too! When we rest a canvas on a nail, there’s no lip or edge to secure it to the wall in the event of unexpected bumps or vibrations. You should also paint the sides of your canvas for a more finished, professional look.

DISPLAY ITEMS

Presentation is key! Our best selling artists provide their own branded display items. Here are some examples of ways artists have made their product displays match their brand:

Display items can be found at thrift stores, craft stores, home decor stores and more. You can use bins, stands, easels, racks, or craft your own display solution. If you have questions about effectively displaying your items, send us an email at staff@utaharts.org.

Now that your work is looking gallery-ready, it’s time to send us your inventory information.

STEP 2: SUBMITTING YOUR INVENTORY

We use Google Sheets and Google Drive to collect and organize your product information. If you don’t already have a Google account, we will need you to create one. For smartphones, you can download the google drive and google sheets apps. We know this can be frustrating, but it will help us a great deal in processing and listing your work quickly and accurately.

Also, if you don’t have access to a computer, no worries, you’re welcome to complete this process at the gallery.

You’ll receive an email from Staff Urban Arts Gallery inviting you to collaborate on a shared folder. This folder includes a google sheet and a folder for image files.

First let’s take a look at the google sheet. We’ll go through the columns one at a time, then show you a few examples.

Item Title: Your item title should match the label you created in Step 1. This is how your item will be displayed on our online store.

Description: The description will appear in your online product listing, and should tell a customer what they need to know without them necessarily seeing the item in person. The description should include anything that could help a potential buyer understand and appreciate what you’ve created, such as the materials, technique, or inspiration. If you make jewelry, you should include the type of metal you use for your chains or casings. You can keep your descriptions short and sweet, or go more detailed and descriptive.

Variation: Color: This is where we would differentiate, for example, T-shirts of the same design which come in both black and blue, or identical art prints in different color mats. If your item doesn’t have multiple color variations, you can leave this column blank.

Size/Dimensions: For art prints, we only need width by height, but other items should include depth as well. For T-Shirts, you can simply list the size letters S, M, L, XL, etc.

Price: This tends to be the thing that artists struggle with the most. You get to set your own price, but keep in mind that the commission split is 60/40 in favor of you, the artist. We’ll discuss pricing in more detail later in this article.

Quantity: the number of items that you are dropping off. This will be different for everyone, but as a general rule, we don’t need large numbers of duplicates. You don’t need to bring 100 copies of each print, for example. It should be closer to 3 or 5. If you’re unsure how many items to bring, please feel free to email us at staff@utaharts.org.

SEO: This stands for ‘Search Engine Optimization.’ This is where you can list keywords and search terms to help your item show up in online searches. This will be different for everyone. Some important terms to include are medium, style, genre, subject, etc.

Ok, now let’s look at a few examples.

This first item doesn’t have any size or color variations, so it will be the simplest to enter:

Next, this art print has 3 different sizes. Notice how the 3 sizes are listed on different rows, but the title, description, and SEO only need to be entered once:

Our last example is the trickiest. This t-shirt not only comes in multiple sizes, but multiple colors as well. 

We’ll start with the title and description again, and then move on to color. Within one color, we have 6 different sizes, which we’ll list in the same way as before. Below this, we’ll add the next color, and repeat the process. From there, it should be a simple matter to add the quantities and prices. Just like the title and description, one SEO field for all these variations is sufficient.

If your product needs special considerations, or if you run into any issues with your sheet at all, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us for help. 

Now that you’ve filled out your inventory sheet, let’s look at the Images folder.

Product photos are one of the most important assets you can have as an online seller, and we highly recommend investing in quality image files of your work. If you’re unable to capture photos of your work for any reason, no worries, we can photograph it for you at the gallery. 

If you can provide image files, they should be named with the item title and your name. The title here should match the item title you entered in your spreadsheet.

There are two ways to upload your images to your “Images” Google folder. Either click the ‘new’ button on the top left and add file or simply drag and drop the files into the folder from your Desktop.

STEP 3: THE GALLERY AGREEMENT

Now that you’ve entered your product information and uploaded your image files, it’s time to bring your products into the gallery. You can drop off your items any time during our regular business hours: Tuesday-Sunday 12-9 PM. Keep in mind we are closed Mondays.When you drop off your items, we will have you sign a physical contract and fill out a W9 for tax purposes. Let’s go over the most important points in the gallery contract.

By signing the contract, you agree to the 40% gallery commission rate. Remember, you get to choose your own price for your work, but when an item sells you’ll only receive 60% of the price you list, so plan accordingly. 

We’ll start you with a six-month contract and reevaluate your continued placement at the end of that term.

You retain the copyright of your work while selling with us.

Mutual agreement to sell: basically, we agree to do the work of setting up and promoting your work as part of the gallery, and you agree to provide us with anything we may need to close sales. This may include sending us certificates of authenticity, or responding to customer inquiries. 

Once again, you set your own price. Checks for sales are issued on the 15th of the following month

We’re liable for damage while your work is in our possession. If your work is damaged or stolen, we’ll either pay to repair or replace it, or compensate you for 60% of the retail value, as if it had sold. 

The Exclusivity Clause essentially asks that you don’t show the same work at another gallery in the city, creating competition for us. The contract does not prevent you from selling at markets, festivals, and other such opportunities. We just ask that you don’t actively drive traffic away from the gallery. For example, it would be unethical to tell gallery customers “buy it from me directly instead of through the gallery and I’ll give you a discount.” To this point, It’s generally considered good practice to make your prices consistent across venues. If you price your work lower on your website than at the gallery, for example, you’re competing with your own retailer. In this situation, we would have done the work and borne the expense of getting your art displayed in front of customers, only to be cut out of the sale. This can be a complex subject with a lot of gray areas, so please feel free to contact us with any questions or concerns you have. 

The Completion of Display for Consignment section states that if your products need specific display items, you the artist are responsible for providing those items. You’re also responsible for making sure your products are gallery ready, as explained earlier. 

The Curation clause: We won’t be immediately placing your items into the gallery when you drop off. We have to process the items into our system first, and then our team will place them in the boutique. We choose artist placements, and we reserve the right to move displays around and change artist placement as we deem necessary.”

The End of Contract Term clause states that if your contract is terminated, you have 30 days from the termination date to pick up your items. If we don’t hear from you after that point, the items will be considered abandoned and will become the property of the Utah Arts Alliance.

Shipping: if you need to ship your work to the gallery, you are responsible for the shipping cost, including return shipping. If, on the other hand, a customer needs to ship your items they’ve purchased from us, we’re responsible for arranging the shipping. 

The Media Release sections allows us to use images of your work on our website and social media accounts. 

One last agreement: Because it takes us so much time to process your items, we ask that once you drop them off at the gallery, they stay here. That being said, you’re encouraged to refresh and rotate your display periodically, we just want to avoid having artists clear out their gallery display to do a market, for example, and then drop off a huge stack of replacement items for us to process and barcode. If you’d like to swap out an original painting occasionally, no worries, just email us and we’ll work it out.

You’re done and now an official boutique artist at the Urban Arts Gallery! Please don’t hesitate to reach out and contact us if you have any questions or concerns. We look forward to working with you!