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Accelerate Your Art Department

(July 2007) posted on Fri Jul 06, 2007

Establishing best practices in the art department can save time and boost quality. Trimingham describes some methods you can use to initiate such improvements.

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By Thomas Trimingham

Nothing could be worse for a hardworking artist to hear than “Yup, that’s great, now get back to work.” This is especially true when really big goals are met. Artists crave positive feedback and appreciation. Though many don’t want to admit it, the desire to be appreciated for their talents drives emotional people to an art career in the first place. Many young artists feel this so strongly that they will work for next to nothing just as long as the art they do is appreciated. Celebrate achievements in the art department. Make sure those who contributed are recognized and congratulated. This will help to push everyone toward the next goal and keep that good feeling channeled into the art department.

One talented manager that I worked with said that he treated compliments like golden opportunities to really reach someone’s personality. He claimed to always be very specific and focused in his appreciation so that the artist would know he was serious. If you think about it, such a compliment can have a lasting, if not permanent, effect on any person.

Evaluating the art department

The necessity of objectivity often makes evaluation difficult. If you have a small to mid-size company, consider getting an external, experienced opinion instead of calling a manager or artist to judge their own methods. The goal in evaluation is strictly the collection of information. A common mistake in evaluations is making judgments during the process and then acting without a complete picture of everything that is going on. It’s more effective to collect information about the different areas and tasks that go on in the art department as completely as possible. Don’t rush to judgment.


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