For the last few years, I've spent some time every day painting because it made me feel whole, connected to the universe in some inexplicable way. I had no intention of being in the business of selling my art. I made a website so that I would have a place for people who were not physically with me to see what I was painting. One thing led to another and I ended up opening an Etsy shop to sell my paintings. Since then, the entire focus of my days changed dramatically.
I have met some of the most amazing, friendly, helpful, talented people in the world - yes, in the whole world. People are there from everywhere! The lights never get turned off at Etsy.
I started a group with the intention to raise the awareness in the greater marketplace that Etsy does indeed have high end visual art and that it was more than a craft selling site. In just a couple of months being active at Etsy, I have discovered an additional mission for my group. To raise the awareness of high end visual art WITHIN Etsy - and especially within Etsy ownership and administration.
Don't get me wrong - I'm not there to be the new person on site - telling everyone how they should do it. I'm not antagonistic or even a troublemaker by nature. I am, however, very capable of being an advocate if I truly believe in a cause.
And I truly believe! Etsy is a great concept, generally run very well, and is growing - both as a community of artisans and as a business. It seems that it began as a place for "all things handmade" which translated easiest into a place to sell crafts. Visual artists began to congregate on Etsy and I'm not sure Etsy was expecting us or know quite what to do with us. They do try, but we are a serious lot and seriously ready to be presented at the top level of everything Etsy.
Over the course of the next few days and weeks, I will post entries of our group's mission, goals, and efforts - - and report on our successes. We will have successes. We already do. Below is a link to an ongoing thread of visual artists trying to get Etsy's attention to bring Visual Art to a top level category for listing and searching. My bet...we'll have it before the end of 2008.
Stay tuned! And live in full color.