Case Study: Marie Laywine, Fine Art
Embrace change and ‘dance with life’ – Marie Laywine Fine Art
What would you do if your market was changing and your traditional routes to customers were disappearing? This is the situation that confronted Marie Laywine.
Marie is an internationally recognised artist whose work is grounded in what she refers to as an ‘interior landscape’. She uses images and ideas from her dreams to help her represent visually the mountain ranges and coastal plains inside a person. Born in Canada, Marie has travelled globally and has lived in Italy, France, the Middle East and the Himalayas before settling in Dorset. Her travels were a period of time when Marie was able to increase her knowledge in dream material, exterior landscapes and culture.
Marie sells her work globally and is represented by art dealers internationally. In recent years Marie noticed a change in the way the market operated and her usual approach to marketing wasn’t working so well. But did she give up?
“I have to admit that I was pushed against the wall. I tried the usual approach to making contact with art dealers who would put my work in the right international market. This involved e-mailing a website address and then posting portfolios with letters introducing myself and my work. But I found out that quite a few art dealers have now closed their galleries and are using websites instead. This left me with the choice of continuing with a system that didn’t work or sit and wait. I could not afford these options. And so I decided that the best way forward was DIGITAL.”
But as Marie discovered, having a web site and a sales channel through the Saatchi Art site is not enough on its own, you also need to build your audience and drive traffic to your web site.
Marie discovered the Dorset Business Women Go Digital programme quite late in the day but nevertheless, having attended some of the workshops on offer Marie says:
“Dorset Business Women Go Digital certainly opened the door for me. I can’t tell you how much the few sessions I’ve attended have helped. And Linda’s session on e-mail marketing opened up for me the way this works and comes together.”
Marie recently published her first blog post and this has led to exciting new developments. She was approached to do an interview and this has led to another request to do a biography of her, both of which will increase her exposure even more. Marie is gradually becoming a bit of an expert herself in all things digital.
“My web designer is beginning to feel a little inadequate since I’m able to point out where he has let me down on my website.”
Change can be scary for all of us and when our traditional methods stop working it is tempting to give in to the fates. But not Marie, she has adapted to the emerging new way of doing business in her field and it is starting to pay off. What about the future, has Marie reached the end of her digital journey? Not a bit of it.
“Yesterday’s session I finally ‘saw’ how all of this works and there will be no stopping me now.”
And “dance with life”? At the age of 78 Marie is still brimming with ideas, enthusiasm and vitality. She says
“I was told that to ‘dance with life’ means you’re engaged with life. This attitude gives you the energy you need for the content of the engagement. Being an artist who continuously moves forward in my work keeps me engaged and ‘dancing’. Believe me, it works.”
As someone more famous than me once said “Keep dancing”!
Visit Marie’s web site and see her beautiful work and read her blog: http://www.marielaywine.com