Quebec City Canada Ice Skaters with a Festive Feel
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2012 – Year In Review


Wow, I can’t believe we are days away from the end of 2012. What’s more, I can’t believe I’m not traveling somewhere! This will be my first New Years in the US since I rang in 2005 in Edinburgh. Those New Year trips were as near to a holiday tradition as could be, but even before I fell and broke my foot, I didn’t see another New Year abroad coming on the horizon. The inspiration wasn’t there. The money was arguably not there. Breaking my foot was simply the coup de grâce. I’m sure there will be a wistful part of me when the clock strikes midnight on New Year’s Eve, but the reasonable side of me knows that it’s not per se the end of a tradition. It may just be a pause button so to speak, or perhaps there are new traditions in the wings somewhere waiting to be discovered!

Along with ending traditions, 2012 was about changing focus and strategy where it comes to my photos and photo-based artwork. I mean, I can be a slow editor, but it’s unprecedented that 2012 is nearly over and I’ve yet to turn my attention to the photos from Quebec and New York City. I know at least a few of you have noticed that!

Quebec City Canada Ice Skaters with a Festive Feel
Quebec City Ice Skaters – Conclusion to 2011

As some of you know, I have spent all my time optimizing past work. Put simply, it would do me no good to continue adding work that few people saw. I needed to work on beefing up my presence, to improve descriptions, to improve the titles of my work. I’ve learned a lot about making my art more visible online at least. We should always be learning after all! There are many of us artists who are guilty of trying to let our work speak for itself. It’s a very Field of Dreams, if you build it they will come sort of outlook. And unless you have an incredibly lucky stroke, it doesn’t work that way. Your art has to have words that describe it so people may find it, and you have to work on using any channel you can find to promote your work It’s the latter that I know I still have to work on. I do not find tooting my own horn remotely easy. Still, I’m glad to report by year’s end, views on my site were the best they’ve been.

2012 has been a full year. It began on a high note with the first time I licensed any of my work for use in advertising. If anyone happened to see a L’Oreal ad that included a red London phone booth, that was mine! It was used for the back-drop in a counter display. I saw photos earlier this year, but you’ll forgive me that I never actually saw the final product in person. I’d love to hear if any of you did! It was a first but hopefully not a last as far as licensing my work. It was a highlight I kept meaning to share but never found the time.

And as you all know, part of my exercise in learning how to make my art visible online, I added another venue. And I have nothing but good to say about that. If you had suggested it a year ago, I would have had misgivings, chiefly a concern that I was spreading my eggs to yet another basket. And there’s no doubt that it’s taking me time to get my work added, but there’s been a definite bump in sales that has not come at the expense of my other venue. Taking advantage of a site that is well placed in Google’s rankings is akin to putting your work in a store front that is on a busy street. Maybe one day I will be able to build that sort of draw on my own, but at this stage of the game, it works well for me to have my work on display in a visible location like Fine Art America.

So, 2012 had a broken foot and a broken tradition, but it included highlights as well. I guess I could complain, but I won’t! I’m happy to be able to follow my dreams how ever long I can, and I appreciate every one of you out there who have supported those dreams either by hanging one of those dreams on your walls or by spreading the word to your friends or simply a pat on the back when I may have needed it.

Thanks and I hope we all have an excellent 2013 ahead!

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  1. Great article Mark – i’ve been thinking long and hard myself about to improve my own visibility on-line. I believe it’s a challenging question that really needs an expert professional approach to be successful in such a market. It’s a bit like golf – time and effort will reap rewards, but casual attitude to the subject will lead to mediocre results.

    1. I have a full-blown post on the subject of half-heartedly trying formulating in my brain as we speak, Ray! I touched on it on this post because it explains where my 2012 went. Yet I’ve seen so many examples of artists/photographers throwing in the towel on various Print on Demand sites lately and so many of them I see the same pattern of thinking that XYZ site will do all the work for them. And I’m not preaching from on high. I’ve been there, too. I know that I still have loads more to learn, but I’m open to that! We’re all learning, and that’s a cool thing!

  2. Kat Cannon Coons says:


    1. Thanks much Kat! Glad to be a happy spot in the days past and hope I will remain so in the future! Thanks for your support! 🙂

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