Artist John Dyer talks about Art Publishing and ways forward with digital on demand technology
Published on 09/19/2009
Artists often allow their art to stray off the canvas onto Tee-Shirts and other merchandise. Major galleries like the Tate and RA encourage this. Sir Terry Frost produced several examples of art Tee-Shirts. Sandra Blow's work has been printed onto scarfs and lots of well known contemporary artists including Damien Hirst and Tracey Emin have produced examples of this wearable art. With the advent of new web technologies and the astounding quality of one off production techniques it is now possible for artists to properly embrace this medium as part of their creative journey. John Dyer and Joanne Short are internationally renowned for their unique paintings and wide range of published art and have taken delight in exploring this new creative medium that is now available.
"For many years both myself and artist Joanne Short have licensed our art to large companies - Habitat was one of the best known. Historically these licensing deals have been set up with a large publisher in London - The Art Group and the deals always worked well for all concerned.
In recent years the art market has become increasingly crowded because of digital printing technologies and artist royalties have taken a dive because the number of available images increased exponentially, effectively watering down the payments to the few artists who had made it onto the global licensing stage.
With companies such as Alan Titchmarsh products and the Eden Project in Cornwall the John Dyer Gallery formed new publishing relationships and for the past ten years produced, using traditional printing techniques, a range of cards,posters and stationery for them which was very successful. This worked well until Eden too decided they needed a wider and faster moving product line and began to license from London based companies such as The Art Group using digital techniques instead of sourcing locally.
So last year after receiving a royalty statement from the The Art Group, who had now entered receivership, that showed an art poster selling for over £50 and my royalty of a few pence we decided to make a break from this model and The John Dyer Gallery ventured into its own art on demand range that could service collectors,working partners and the artists' creative needs. (N.B. The Art Group has now relaunched as the Artful Group Limited and continue to trade)
The way art on demand is currently working is you will come across a booth in a high profile situation and then order products from a screen to be shipped directly to your home - we felt it was equally good for people to do this from their own homes and began to research for a company we could work with that could provide a wide range or merchandise, archival quality art prints, a web site that would retail the products for us and a global presence. The company we decided to use is Zazzle - based in the USA. http://www.zazzle.co.uk/johndyergallery*
As artists we are delighted with the results and our collectors are flocking to the site as it provides an incredible range of options, amazing retail quality and unique items that are only available online.
Our collectors who have seen calendars,note books,posters,cards etc over the years love the new art products and the wider choice of options we can now offer, and web site ships worldwide in many currencies. America is proving to be a big new territory for us and it is great to think we are promoting Cornwall and the places we love at the same time.
Using our new web site we have a new project as official gallery for the Girlguides Centenary and we have a product range to support that. We have a section of Eden Project prints, a range based on Tresco Abbey Gardens, Darwin 200 and also for a new start up company Eskimo Kids in Bristol. It allows us to create vibrant art products that promote our paintings and the gallery.