Patrick McCallister Shares Insights And Suggestions For Artists, Art Show Producers, And The Public. April Is Autism Awareness Month

World Autism Awareness Day (WAAD) is observed every year on April 2nd.  Patrick McCallister shares some of his insights when he attended an art show, to raise public awareness of autism. The Rickie Report includes some helpful points which enhance not only the experience for the art lover, but increase sales for the artists. WAAD highlights the need to help and improve the quality of life of those with autism so that they can lead full and meaningful lives as an integral part of society.  While we are physically distanced and our awareness is more heightened, we can learn some new behaviors when we go back to our new “normal”.





If you’ve met one person with autism, you’ve met one person with autism.

– Dr. Stephen Shore




April   is   Autism   Awareness   Month

Awareness and Acceptance Are Good For Artists



By Patrick McCallister, With Rickie Leiter




To raise Autism Awareness, we must first become informed.  The aim of sharing this is to increase understanding and acceptance of people with autism, foster worldwide support and inspire a kinder, more inclusive world.


Patrick shares, “As Deborah and I walked onto the crowded street for the art show, I could hear myself making involuntary guttural sounds. I put in my earplugs and set a pair of industrial earmuffs over them to block almost all sound”.


“Fortunately that show was laid out in such a way that it minimized the amount of multi-directional pedestrian traffic I’d encounter. If it wasn’t set up like that, I couldn’t have been there. We would have left before walking into the art show, altogether. Still, throughout our visit my head was on a proverbial swivel as I nervously watched out for anyone getting too close to me. Incidental touches are more than disturbing to me — they’re painful, which is something many people find hard to believe or understand”.


“When I stopped to look at pieces that caught my eye, artists and other sellers started friendly, but quickly got visibly annoyed”.

“I’m used to that….”, Patrick tells The Rickie Report.

“Yeah, it’s hard for many folks to talk to me when I’ll expose just one ear, and then only partially. Yeah, it’s hard for them to understand I might not seem to be looking at them or things they’re trying to show me, but I see a lot more with peripheral sight than people realize. I can’t explain these things on the spot, so as soon as people seem annoyed I walk away to spare us all grief”.


“The wares of George Tortorelli, of Medicine Wind Music, caught my eye at this show. I’m a primitive flute and musical whistle player. I stopped to admire his handmade instruments. He approached, then visibly paused and slowed his hand movements. He kept his hands back as he gently gestured toward instruments while we talked. He paused when I checked behind me for people, and picked up where he was when I turned back as though it was normal interaction”.


“People approached his booth. My chest tightened. I was instantly ready to leave. Deborah stepped between the newcomers and me — a natural motion to other people’s eyes  – that’s a protective measure for me. George moved aside and said, ‘You can step behind my table if you want’.  I took him up on the offer. I analyzed his wares for what must have been 15 minutes. George took care of other customers on the public side of his table as I did this. I’d laid out the instruments I would choose from in an impromptu but systematic organization. Then I made my picks and my purchase. It was the only thing I bought at the show that day. George nodded to thank me. He made no attempt to shake my hand”.


“George wasn’t being rude. By intuition or background he picked up on the fact I’m autistic, whether by name or not, and adapted to my needs.  And he got my business! Odds are I’ll buy from him again. (I spend more time on his website than I should, looking at his gorgeous instruments. I know from owning one are also high quality)”.


Patrick conveys, “There’s a moral to this whole story. Awareness, acceptance, adaption, and accommodation = art sales”.


He adds,”It’s difficult to summarize autism, which is why “spectrum” was added to the diagnostic terminology — autism spectrum disorder. Autism is a developmental condition usually typified by weakened social drives, which often shows as social awkwardness. This is most often accompanied by other manifestations such as delayed, underdeveloped verbal communication, sensory problems, often aversion to sounds, and others, such as repeated gestures referred to as “stimming.” Some recoil from calling autism a “disorder,” and prefer terms such as “neurodiversity.” In diagnostic terms, “disorder” simply means someone’s learning or mental processing is different from norms.  


Some people with autism live and work autonomously with varying levels of support. Others can’t. Patrick tells us, “What makes a huge difference between an autistic adult being able to live and work independently, or needing lifelong care, is the presence or lack of an aware, accepting and accommodating society”.


Readers cannot take Patrick’s narrative and use it as a template for identifying other autists. He shares, ” Yes, ‘autist’ is a dictionary word for someone with autism.  If you’ve met one autist …you’ve met one autist!  There are some general clues you are talking with an autist, for example when the person seems bothered by sounds or movements. They may have a tendency to look away while speaking or have a tendency to articulate a specialized knowledge without apparent regard to social norms”.


Our take-away from this?


Fortunately it doesn’t take specialized knowledge to converse with those with autism. Watch and listen to people and follow their cues. This works for everything from affective disorders, such as depression, to anxiety disorders and mental-heath conditions such as post-traumatic stress disorder. You’ll meet people with all of these and many more, when displaying art. Throw “weird” out of your thinking and replace it with “uncommon” and let those ‘less common’ customers lead you to how to interact with, and sell to, them.



Patrick reminds us, “We love and want art, too”.


Patrick McCallister is a longtime journalist who was diagnosed with Asperger’s syndrome in 1993. Like a lot of people with developmental differences, he hid the diagnosis for years. Today he advocates for people with disabilities in various areas, but especially transportation.

For more information:


In 1970, the Autism Society launched an ongoing nationwide effort to promote autism awareness and assure that all affected by autism are able to achieve the highest quality of life possible.  In 1972, the Autism Society launched the first annual National Autistic Children’s week, which evolved into National Autism Awareness Month (NAAM). This April, we continue our efforts to spread awareness, promote acceptance, and ignite change.

The Autism Society of America, the nation’s oldest leading grassroots autism organization, is is proud to celebrate National Autism Awareness Month  in April 2020 with the its new “Celebrate Differences” campaign. Designed to build a better awareness of the signs, symptoms, and realities of autism, #CelebrateDifferences focuses on providing information and resources for  communities to be more aware of autism, promote acceptance, and be more inclusive in everyday life.

The Autism Society recognizes that the prevalence of autism in the United States has risen from 1 in 125 children in 2010 to 1 in 59 in 2020 – recognizing this continued increase, the goal for NAAM is to further increase awareness about autism signs, symptoms and opportunities through: information and referrals, events, printable and digital resources, and community partnerships with businesses and organizations dedicated to building inclusive experiences.

The Autism Society has a variety of resources designed to inform and encourage communities to celebrate differences, and become more inclusive of individuals with autism. The campaign will overlap with World Autism Awareness Day on April 2nd, and continue throughout the month. These resources will be made available on social media for sharing as well as on for download.



Being a part of a community and feeling included is extremely important in people’s lives. Being part of a community doesn’t mean that it has to be necessarily one’s neighborhood/geographic community. People can experience and explore different communities by traveling and/or taking vacations. People can meet new people and try new things when they go to various camps or retreats. Some may find community among a religious belief they share with others.


There are many communities in which people can be a part of such as work and/or social communities which are centered on leisure activities or hobbies. But being a part of any of these communities does not mean simply that the individual is present. To have true community inclusion, the individual needs to be participating and accepted by the other individuals. Becoming a part of any community takes time and effort. Individuals will have to learn practices of the community and have to get accustomed to new things and people. Similarly, the members of the community will have to learn and get accustomed with the new member. Community inclusion is not always a fast process, especially when it causes people to get out of their comfort zone. But with proper supports and effort, community inclusion is extremely rewarding and life-altering.




For coverage of your events, to place an advertisement, or speak to Rickie about appearing in The Rickie Report, contact:

Rickie Leiter, Publisher   561-537-0291

17019 SW Sapri Way   Port St. Lucie, FL 34986

Neil Capozzi Speaks About News, Tools And Resources For Artists Beyond Paint, Paper And Supplies. Staying Safe From An Artist Scam And What To Do If It Happens

Scammers take advantage of emotions when approaching their victims. Visual artists are just as vulnerable as other scam victims. Art scammers play on your emotions and your desire/need to make a living from your art. Now that galleries, art shows, and art exhibits are closed due to the Covid19 outbreak, we are more vulnerable than ever!  We all know internet art scams exist, but sometimes it’s easy to forget about the warning signs with the excitement of a potential sale.  The Rickie Report speaks with Neil Capozzi, owner of Stuart Art Supply & Artists’ Nook Studio about the latest scams exploiting visual artists, how to avoid being a victim, and what you can do if you’ve been victimized.






Stuart Art Supply  & Artists’ Nook Studio

43 SE Kindred Street  Stuart, FL 34990












TRR:   Tell us some of the aspects of an artist scam


People figuring out how to exploit striving artists is nothing new, but technology and changing market structures have opened up some new ways to do it.  While I don’t subscribe to the notion that all artists are “struggling” or “starving”, these are creative people who are at their most vulnerable when approached for a “big sale”.


As a small business owner, I’ve experienced many unusual events throughout the years and one instance seems to be recurring. This is a good time to remind those in the creative sector to be careful with their online presence. If you get an offer to purchase something you sell, be attentive. Sometimes if an offer is too good to be true then it most likely leads you into a trap.


I was recently contacted by a client/artist (we’ll refer to as “A”) who is a novice in the online art world. Like so many, she posts her images on the web on various social media sites and her own website. “A” mentioned that she was contacted from her website by someone who was interested in purchasing some art as a gift for her husband. Since this was a cold contact via a website that doesn’t offer online sales, I was immediately suspect!


I asked “A” where she was in the transaction and she said they’d agreed on a price and the method of payment, shipping and how to compensate the shipper. I instantly suggested she not do anything else.  Understandably, she became nervous and we agreed that she would no longer make any attempts to move the process forward. The buyer continued to email “A” and praised the work she saw on her website. “A” called me, and we talked some more, and we decided to play along. The buyer would not give her address or her telephone number. The excuse was that this was a gift and that she uses a local company to ship the order anyway so there was no need for her to provide the information to the artist. The only contact was via email.


“A” was contacted via email by the buyer with updated payment information. The buyer said she issued a bank draft and gave”A” the UPS tracking number. “Wow, the buyer still seemed serious”, “A” thought!  “What should I do?” I told her to wait until the check arrived. The check arrived a day later. “A” was tense – “what do I do now?”. The amount on the check was $2500 and this amount was well above the agreed upon purchase amount. The buyer’s instructions were to pack the purchase and she would send her shipper to pick up the items and send them to her, the shipper would collect the balance of the $2500 check in cash.


I told “A” to call the bank on the check and asked if there were sufficient funds. When she did, the bank told her that the check was drawn on a fake account. So, if my client proceeded with the transaction, she would have been out the art and the cash she gave the shipper. It’s an old scam and it continues to catch people off guard. Remember, if you get an offer that is to good to be true it usually is!




TRR:  Preying on the vulnerability of an artist, whose ego is what is on the canvas, in a sculpture, or part of any visual art is appalling.  This is not the first time I have heard about this, which is why we want to share some specific information to avoid being scammed.  What are the “red flags”?









1. Impersonal Stories

The “buyer” uses a story to hook you about their wife liking your work or wanting art for a new home, but it sounds stunted and impersonal. A big tip off is that they do not even address you by name, but simply start with “Hello”. This way they can send the same email to thousands of artists.

2. A Foreign Emailer

The “buyer”usually claims to live in another country — far from where you live — to make sure the art has to be shipped. This is all part of their dastardly plan.

3. A Sense of Urgency

The “buyer” claims they need your art quickly. That way the art will be shipped before you find out the check or credit card details are fraudulent.

4. A Fishy Request

The “buyer” requests your personal information, including back accounts

The request doesn’t add up. For instance, the “buyer” wants to buy three pieces and asks for prices and dimensions, but doesn’t include the pieces’ names. Or, they want to purchase a piece that is marked as sold on your website. It will reek of suspicious activity.

5. Poor Language/ Spelling and Phrasing Errors

The email is riddled with spelling and grammatical errors and doesn’t flow as a normal email should.

6. Strange Spacing

The email is oddly spaced. This means the weasel carelessly copied and pasted the same message to thousands of artists, hoping some will fall for the scam.

7. A Cashier’s Check Request

 The “buyer” suggests non-traditional payment transactions or sending money to a third party.

The “buyer” insists that they can only pay by cashier’s check. These checks will be fake and you could be blamed when your bank discovers the fraud. However, by the time this happens the scammer will have already received your art.

8. Outside Shipping Wanted

They want to use their own shipper–which is usually a fake shipping company that is in on the scam. They often say they are moving and will have their moving company pick up your artwork.

9.  Be Cautious of “Relay Calls”

People with hearing or speech difficulties legitimately use relay calls. Scammers may also use this communication service to contact you.  Do Not Accept relay calls unless you know the person using this service.  Scammers often use a “third party” who “works” for a communications company.  Often, an “overage amount” is involved.  Hang up!






Remember that a scam email might not have all of these signs, but go with your gut.


Scammers can be clever.


Stick with the old adage: “If it seems too good to be true, it probably is.”







TRR:   If you are scammed, What can you do?



Being scammed or even experiencing an unsuccessful attempt can feel incredibly frustrating and insulting. It’s normal to want to somehow “get back” at the scammer. Some people satisfy this urge by engaging with the scammer in order to “waste their time”, but honestly this is just a waste of your own valuable time. Your best response is to ignore it and move on, or possibly submit a complaint to the FTC using the link below.


TRR:    As reminds us, “It’s about emotion, not logic!”  Read the fine print of everything you sign!  If your eyes glaze over, it’s time to consider asking for legal help.  As I say in my art-marketing seminars…”do you know how to fix a car engine?  No?  So, you decide to bring it to someone who does. Then, why are you hesitating to get legal advice?”


A new scam trending upon the internet is the false premise of an online gallery.

Recently, one of InLiquid’s members received a scam. It was a “call for submissions” to a now-non-existent business called Faburry Gallery, supposedly located in Philadelphia. With a rather vague and platitudinous description of their mission, they have asked artists for submissions via email, also asking for a small fee of $5 per submission. Yes, it’s a small price, any independent contractor could eat up the loss, however it gives way to an entirely new scam-frontier: identity theft. Although we would typically suggest to deal art locally, this only further raises our eyebrows on what is considered safe. While eager to have one’s art visible on a national scale, this style of enticement couldn’t be more of a bait-and-switch. 

So to all our hard working artists out there, our only suggestion is to always be aware. Most scams come in patterns and, quite often, are too good to be true. As an organization dedicated to the promotion of artists, we will do our best to always keep you posted. 


This sickening strategy allows them to either steal your original works, money, or both. It’s crucial to know the signs and how to protect yourself, so you can continue to benefit from legitimate online opportunities. And, continue to sell your art to a whole new audience of interested, REAL buyers.





Here are some helpful websites with information on frauds and scams.  Stay a step ahead of scammers and keep yourself updated with the latest information on scams and tips to help prevent yourself from becoming a victim.

Art Advocate and colleague, Carolyn Edlund, from ArtsyShark tells us, “I have seen this exact scam, but it doesn’t even need to be a payment for an art sale. I got one from a weird address at Paypal billing me for a domain name (which I do own) but for three times the price! I didn’t bite, but contacted Paypal and they asked me to forward it to One of my clients got something similar, simply telling her there was an issue with her account and that she should log in through a link. Paypal must address these problems, because surely there are a ton of people, including artists, getting ripped off”.   Again, when in doubt, contact Paypal!  For more information, contact or visit


Read this article from Agora Gallery:

          (Look under “For Artists”  and then  “Artist Advice Blog”)

Read Kathleen McMahon’s Art Scam blog:

Federal Trade Commission – Scam Alerts

The Federal Trade Commission’s Scam Alerts page keeps consumers up to date on recent scam alerts with what to know and do about scams in the news.

Federal Bureau of Investigation – Common Fraud Schemes

The Federal Bureau of Investigation has developed their Common Fraud Schemes website to inform you on the most common scams that the FBI investigates and tips to help prevent you from becoming a victim. – Consumer Frauds and Scams

The Consumer Frauds and scams website hosts information and tips on how to avoid scams and fraud with a special section dedicated to current scams to be aware of.

Better Business Bureau – Scam Stopper

The Better Business Bureau’s Scam Stopper website has information on scams including top scams, the science of scams, who gets scammed and report a scam.

For more information about art supplies, art classes, or the opportunity to conduct art classes:



Check Out The Classes/Workshops  Here:


Stuart Art Supply  & Artists’ Nook Studio

43 SE Kindred Street  Stuart, FL 34990






For coverage of your events, to place an advertisement, or speak to Rickie about appearing in The Rickie Report, contact:

Rickie Leiter, Publisher   561-537-0291

17019 SW Sapri Way   Port St. Lucie, FL 34986


Free Information Session For South Florida Artists On April 30th At HATCH 1121 Explores “Artist As An Entrepreneur Institute”

Presented in conjunction with HATCH 1121, an informational session will be offered to artists in the region to learn more about the upcoming Artist as an Entrepreneur Institute (AEI) and the various services the Broward Cultural Division offers to artists in the region, including funding, professional development and networking opportunities. The Rickie Report shares the details and urges artists to attend.  This is a wonderful business opportunity!  Thanks to LULA for making this available.


Opportunities for South Florida Artists

Free informational session

Monday, April 30 | 6 PM – 8 PM

HATCH 1121

1121 Lucerne Avenue, Lake Worth







HATCH 1121  “Great Wall of Artists” by Fabio Onrack



Welcoming creative professionals from across South Florida, AEI will be presented at Fort Lauderdale’s ArtServe, Inc. located at 1350 E. Sunrise Boulevard  from 9 AM to 6 PM on June 2, 9 and 16. Featuring 20 dynamic modules on four consecutive Saturdays, AEI concludes on June 23 with a 9 AM to 2 PM Business Plan Clinic and Workshop.


For more information about this free informational workshop, contact:

Emily Theodossakos, Marketing & Program Manager 561.493.2550, or

Click here to register.




For coverage of your events, to place an advertisement, or speak to Rickie about appearing in The Rickie Report, contact:

Rickie Leiter, Publisher   561-537-0291

17019 SW Sapri Way   Port St. Lucie, FL 34986

As “Season” Slows Down, What Happens To Our Local “Art Scene”? Hint: It Doesn’t Stop!

Less traffic on the road and less waiting for dining reservations is a sure sign that “season” is winding down. What happens to the “art scene”, which has had you trying to find a way to see three opening receptions on the same date for the past few months?  This Rickie Report article looks at the situation and shares some thoughts for artists AND art lovers!




“The Art Scene” After “Season”

As “Season” slows down:

  • Artists continue to create

  • Galleries still exhibit

  • Arts organizations continue to program

  • Museums remain open

  • Classes To Learn Art Techniques are being taught 

  • Original Art and Handmade Fine Crafts Are Still Available!


A Word To Art Lovers and Art Patrons:


Stop by galleries and art exhibits in “off season”.

They’ll be less crowded with visitors – and you’ll have a chance to linger!

This is a terrific time to hone your own art skills, learn a new technique or make a creative play date with friends!

Check The Rickie Report and search for “classes”, “workshops”, “meet the artists” and remember to look at our interactive Calendar of Events!  If you see something that interests you, click on the event. You’ll be brought to the original article for all of the details.  

We might not be publishing daily, but we still have the information you need to stay active in the art scene!


Sharing Some Thoughts With Artists:


NOW is a good time for artists who have been scurrying to meet too many overlapping deadlines for the past six months to organize themselves!

Calls For Entries To Artists continue to appear and now is the time to prepare for the annual events for next “season” 


Business Cards:  

It is time to revisit the wording, font size or photos on them.

Do you have enough cards to get you through the next 12 months? (NO ONE wants to run out in the middle of their busy time…Do it now)!

I make notes on business card ( galleries, exhibits, or organizations I’ll recommend the artist connect with; what is exceptional about their artwork)…

So, consider this before choosing shiny paper and having too many words/photos on your business cards.



Staying organized is one of the hardest parts of returning to your studio after an exhibit or show and putting everything away.

Staying organized for the next event is KEY!

Check your written files to make sure they are up to date.

Mark pieces “SOLD” from your inventory (it makes paying taxes easier for next year).

Is a piece of artwork missing?  Find it now, before the exhibitor or gallery takes possession of it.  (Read the fine print whenever you enter to see what their policy is for work that is left)


Wear And Tear:

Bringing artwork of any kind to exhibits, shows, and galleries produces wear and tear.
Check all frames for nicks and marks that need repair.
Check mats and glass to be sure everything is in proper position and in good condition.
Check all hanging devices.


Update your inventory list.

Take a moment for a mental inventory.

Are you happy with what you are creating?

Is it time to try a new technique that you just haven’t had time for?

Now is a perfect time to take a short-term class or workshop!

Schedule some networking time with other artists.

Talk about how this “season” has been for you. Sharing insights can be helpful, if you don’t get into a round of grousing. If something didn’t “work”, now you have time to reflect on what you can control – how can you react and plan differently?


Outline your business goals – YES! If you are selling your artwork, you are “in business”!

Look at a 2018 Calendar:

Start by marking the dates of all exhibit and show deadlines you are applying to in RED.

NOW: Mark the dates of those acceptance announcements and drop offs in BLUE.


The Rickie Report is interested in sharing your good news!

As soon as you get the acceptance notice, send us an email about the event!

The Rickie Report is already booking dates through December, 2017, so don’t hesitate to contact us!
You may not have all of the details, but we can save you a spot in the publication queue.
To get your article published, let us know 3-6 weeks before the Exhibition or Opening Reception.
Last minute openings are possible, but please do not plan on that, especially during “season”.
Giving us 6 weeks advance notice in “season” gives you more opportunities to choose a timely date for your publication.

An article includes: Who (you/art organization), What (Type of Event), When ( Dates of exhibit and specific dates and time of Receptions, including Hours of Operation), Where (Street address, contact name and phone number to ask more questions), Why ( if this is a fundraiser or for a charity, we will highlight the organization and include their website and social media addresses). Also: 5 jpegs, artist statement, brief bio, website address, social media addresses and anything else you want our readers to know about your artwork and creative process.


It is FREE to subscribe to The Rickie Report.

We will bill you for articles. There is no word maximum. Call for current rates.
Invest in your art business and take a monthly ad. With 3 rotations of jpegs (change them out at no charge monthly), you bring more readers (art lovers and art patrons, gallerists, museum personnel, show directors world wide) to your website. Your ad is seen with every article we publish. Call for current rates.


Not Sure Where To Go From Here?

Rickie Leiter and Ilene Adams regularly lead “Art Marketing Seminars”. We’re preparing for our next one soon.
Our “graduates” have a high rate of new acceptances to exhibits, shows and awards, plus SALES.
We book these seminars with arts organizations or galleries, so please contact Rickie if you are interested.


Individual Consulting:

Rickie is available for individual consultation on an hourly basis. Topics can include, but are not restricted to: Refining your particular marketing tools, Pricing your artwork, Where to network with other artists, Find exhibits and galleries specific for your artistry, Edit your artist statement, and Polish your website presence.




For coverage of your events, to place an advertisement, or speak to Rickie about appearing in The Rickie Report, contact:

Rickie Leiter, Publisher   561-537-0291

17019 SW Sapri Way   Port St. Lucie, FL 34986


Highly Successful “Art of Marketing Your Art” Seminar With Ilene Adams, Rickie Leiter And Raquel Williams Being Offered In February

Do you want to know how artists succeed in getting their artwork shown in galleries? This is your opportunity! Under the auspices of Arthouse429Ilene Gruber Adams, Rickie Leiter and Raquel Williams will present “The Art of Marketing Your Art” in a two-part series. Pre-registration is required. We are proud to announce that numerous previous seminar attendees have been accepted into traditional galleries, juried exhibits, won awards, and made major sales at Florida venues as well as at international venues. The skills they learned through these seminars and mentoring have taken them from hopeful to successful! Don’t miss out on this hands-on practical knowledge seminar.  The Rickie Report shares the details about the next seminar here.






The Art of Marketing Your Art

presented by

Ilene Gruber Adams

Rickie Leiter

Raquel Williams


ArtHouse 429 in Northwood




Session 1: February 9th | 7 – 9 pm

Session 2: February 16th | 7 – 9 pm




429 25th Street West Palm Beach, FL 33407







What are Galleries looking for

How to approach Galleries

Preparing a portfolio

Presenting your work

Pricing Your Work

Marketing your work

Using Social Media

Answering Calls to Artists

and more…


To sign up or get more details contact Ilene :

To register:!the-art-of-marketing/cecc


For coverage of your events, to place an advertisement, or speak to Rickie about appearing in The Rickie Report, contact:

Rickie Leiter, Publisher

The Rickie Report

P.O.Box 33423

Palm Beach Gardens, FL 33420


Do Artists Need Special Insurance? A Special Report By Caren Hackman

The Rickie Report receives numerous calls and emails from artists regarding business issues they deal with.  A common concern is insurance.  We asked Caren Hackman, a fine artist and owner of a graphics business to interview Sheryl G. Wood, Esquire on this topic.  Please note: This is not intended as legal advice. Any advice will always depend on the specific facts and circumstances of a particular situation. We share their discussion here.




Insurance for Artists

Q and A


Caren Hackman, Fine artist 



Sheryl G. Wood, Esquire

Representing Collectors, Artists, Dealers and those with an interest in the Business of Art





Please note: This is not intended as legal advice. Any advice will always depend on the specific facts and circumstances of a particular situation.



CH: Insuring artwork and the contents of my studio makes sense but the task is daunting. Can you help clarify the process?



SW: Looking into insurance coverage for a professional artist is a sound business move. The cost of business insurance is not prohibitive, however, replacing your studio and not being able to work are. You may have a homeowner’s policy if you work in the home, but be sure to read your policy, they typically only provide up to $2500 for business equipment or no coverage at all for business related assets. It is estimated that less than one third of artists have their works covered under business insurance.


There are three types of coverage you may want to consider:
• For Buildings, to cover the physical structure of your studio;
• For your Personal Property, to cover the contents of your studios such as tools, equipment, raw materials, works in progress, finished works, important papers and electronic records; and finally,
• Business Interruption, that covers loss of business income due to time studio is closed for an emergency.
If you can’t afford complete coverage, purchase what you can. Some is better than none. But carefully assess what you need and avoid unnecessary coverage. It is important to insure all works in the studio, including works in progress.



CH: How will the insurance company determine what rates the artist pays and what is covered?



SW: An insurer will determine insurance based on the artist’s stance in the marketplace. What do the paintings, sculptures, or works on paper sell for? If an artist is dealing with a well-established gallery, they should have coverage spelled out in the consignment agreement. However, even some of the established galleries may require artist coverage so they don’t end up covering those losses. Larger insurers typically cover mid-level to blue chip level artists. The reason is that it is easier to underwrite them. An insurance company looks at the way your art is consistently handled. For instance, do you transport your art in a vehicle vs. using a professional shipper and do you make individual miscellaneous sales vs. selling your work through galleries and auction houses.




CH: So how would an artist find insurance for his or her artwork?


SW: Finding a good broker is important, and you can ask colleagues or friends who they use. You need to feel comfortable with whoever you choose, so it’s okay to shop around and get a few quotes. You might decide to go with a broker who represents a specific company or companies, or to go with an independent broker who directly represents you in the marketplace. If the works are very valuable, it is important to speak to a broker that specializes in fine art insurance, they can better dictate how a claim is handled. I spoke to independent broker Sarah Court, from the Aon Private Risk Management Insurance Agency in Miami. Aon specializes in Fine Art Insurance Coverage worldwide.



CH: Will an insurance company cover the all of the artist’s works, both finished and works in progress?



SW: For works in an artist’s studio, at a minimum, the works need to be insured to cover your cost of materials and time you have put into the piece. Premiums are based on risk and the value of those works. You will also want to advise your broker if you are represented by a gallery or receive a commission to do one or more works, whether from an individual or gallery. Schedules of the works will become a part of the policy, and the policy needs to have a rotation schedule as new works come on and others are sold. Individual works should be well documented with a photo and description of work including the title if any, subject, date made, dimensions, medium, condition, frame, special notes about the work, any history of exhibitions or mention in periodicals or electronic media.



CH: Could you give me the names of some insurance companies that cover artworks about which you have knowledge?


SW: There are a handful of insurance companies that specialize in fine art coverage, all of which would need a broker such as Aon to access. Generally, premiums run between $1000 to $10,000 annually for $1,000,000 to $2,000,000 in coverage. The policies tend to cover theft, weather and other emergency damage, and damage in installation, deinstallation and transit.
XL Catlin,
Aspen Insurance,
Berkeley Asset Protection,



CH: Are there other avenues that an artist might consider when shopping for insurance?


SW: Another avenue for a smaller art business is to check for coverage from an industry specialist such as American Crafts.


The policies are relatively inexpensive and offered by different groups dependent on your medium, based on your needs, and can include Business Contents Coverage – On & off premises Coverage for Goods While at Shows & In Transit, Coverage for Tools, Equipment, Product Inventory & Supplies at installation sites, in transit and away from your premises. It would be a good idea for all artists to view this website for good tips for safekeeping your artistic records and keeping your artwork safe and secure. The Studio Protector is the first product of the Coalition for Artists’ Preparedness and Emergency Response, a national task force that was formed in 2006. There is a lot of information, so check it out.



CH: Sheryl, thank you so much for sharing your knowledge with us. How can you be reached if readers have further questions?



SW: You are very welcome. I can be reached at


This article is a Copyright of Sheryl Wood and Caren Hackman 2015




Additional information about signing agreements for exhibit and art insurance can be found at



Sarah K. Johnson Court | Director | Global Fine Art Practice
Aon Private Risk Management Insurance Agency, Inc.
1001 Brickell Bay Drive | Suite 1100 | Miami, FL, 33131
Direct: 305-961-6126 | Cell: 305-608-6375
Toll Free: 866-225-5266 FREE |
CERF+ Craft Emergency Relief Fund + Artists’ Emergency Resources




For more information about Caren Hackman:

Caren Hackman is a graphic designer and fine artist living in Palm Beach Gardens, FL. and author of a book about Graphic Design and Good Business practice:

Be sure to check out Caren’s wonderful artwork – Caren is a talented artist in her own right! She is a founding member of the Artists of Palm Beach County.





For coverage of your events, to place an advertisement, or speak to Rickie about appearing in The Rickie Report, contact:

Rickie Leiter, Publisher

The Rickie Report

P.O.Box 33423

Palm Beach Gardens, FL 33420


Gearing up with Business Cards-An Editorial From The Rickie Report

Did you know that in the 17th Century, business cards were used both as advertising and as maps as there was no formal street numbering system in London?  They originated as trade cards.  Having a professional business card is a key factor in doing business – and that includes being an artist who wants to promote and sell their creative work!  In this article, The Rickie Report looks at this valuable promotional tool.  





  • Business cards are an effective promotional tool to hand out to prospective clients and customers.


  • They are an important part of the artist/art patron relationship


  • They can increase your visibility when you include an extra one when someone is purchasing a gift.


  • They act as a reminder for a future client to get in touch with you.



Standard business cards are 2 x 3 inch rectangles of card stock with business name, logo, person’s name, address, service or products, phone number, fax number , website, and email address. Most business cards are blank on the back, providing a place to make notes about the company’s products or the date of an appointment.


We’re focusing on the art world, so be creative!  Graphic design is the most important element when planning your business card.  A business card should be easy to read!  THINK: Background color for easy readability. A fancy font diminished to the size of a business card can be hard to read. Make sure you look at a “real dimension” before ordering!  Before agreeing to the order, have someone else proof read for typos, mistaken phone numbers and email addresses!  



What really NEEDS to be on a business card?


Who are you?  Include your name and the name of your business!


What are you offering? Be specific if you work in a particular media. Include the fact that you are available for commissions, if you are. That said, do not overload your card with too much information. Be concise.


If you have exhibition space, like a gallery or a place of business, give the street address and city. Include the zip code for anyone using GPS. Include your phone number and/or email address, depending on how you prefer to be reached.


Your website is your “internet business card”. It gives you more space than a hand-held one, so you can go into greater depth with your information: examples of your work, brief biography, artist statement, a listing of exhibits and awards and more. Not everyone sells from their website, but if you do, be sure that your prices are the same as your work being exhibited. 


Handing Off Your Business Card:


One clever painter printed his contact information on one side of his business card, and the other side is a small portion of one of his paintings – a great way for a potential customer to remember why they took the card in the first place! A jewelry artist shows a few of her designs on her business card, again to set her card apart from the other jewelers who don’t specify. She is giving you a message along with her contact information!


Now What?


Most business cards only do half of their marketing job.

What do you want people to do with the business cards you hand out?

  • To encourage continued contact with the customer, consider offering a discount with the card for a future purchase.


  • Give your business card whenever a person signs up to be on your email list. This insures that you will be able to contact them in the future about upcoming shows, special events, or targeted sales. Again, it is not just about them giving you information, it is an exchange – a relationship.


  • If a potential customer asks a question, write a short note on the back of your business card before you hand it to them to help jog their memory once they get home.



  • When you hand your business card to another professional, be sure to shake their hand and thank them.


  • You want to establish a relationship.


  • Take a minute to look at their card. This is a perfect time to ask a question about their business and hopefully find more common ground.


  • This also gives them the opportunity to look at your card and gives you more time to make an impression.


  • You only get one chance to make a first impression.


Do you have an interesting or unusual business card? Send us a jpeg of both sides and tell us how you use your business cards. We love to share ideas! 


For coverage of your events, to place an advertisement, or speak to Rickie about appearing in The Rickie Report, contact:

Rickie Leiter, Publisher

The Rickie Report

P.O.Box 33423

Palm Beach Gardens, FL 33420


What Are Your Next Steps When Your Work Is Being Exhibited?

Congratulations! You’ve been accepted to a Gallery, Art Festival, Art Exhibit, SOLO Exhibit or you are making a presentation or doing a demo!  When you show your work anywhere, what should you do next?  The Rickie Report discusses next steps to increase public awareness, viewings and sales.



You’ve Been Accepted!  Now What?



Congratulations!  You’ve just been accepted to:


__          A Juried Art Exhibit/Art Show

__          A Coop Gallery

__          A Vanity Gallery

__          A Traditional Gallery

__          A Publication

__           Other  ( Presenting, Giving a Demo)




Tell everyone you know!  Your passion and excitement is infectious!  

You are THE BEST person to tell others about your artwork.


  • Social Media
  • Print Media
  • Web Media ( like The Rickie Report)
  • Radio ( some stations include local events, especially if there is a Charity involved)
  • Television ( see comment above)
  • YOUR WEBSITE  (Have you updated it to include the new event?)
  • People you meet in your daily life (Seriously, if other people overhear your conversation in the grocery line, they might want to attend!)   Have your business cards ready!


Once you receive your acceptance, it is time to send out a press release!  


Brief Artist Statement which can be used as a quote from you.

Brief overview of the highlights of your art career.  

Who ( you)

What (the Exhibit, Festival, Organization or Gallery)

When ( When does the exhibit or show run? Is there a special Opening Reception?)

How Much (Is there a charge to attend?)

Where ( Exact street address.  If it’s a tough-to-find locale, include GPS information)

Why ( Is this a benefit for a Charity, A special Commemorative Event?)

At least 3 good quality jpegs  ( sending low resolution for web and higher resolution for print makes the life of an editor much easier – we’ll talk about this later)

Title your jpegs AND include your name!  

Include: medium, size and price

Your Website address.

Links to Facebook and any other Social Media you are involved with.

Your phone number  (Really!  Some of us still call people to confirm pieces of information)

Kill Date – What is the latest date a publication can use your material?

An overview of the exhibit ( Does it have a theme, how many pieces were accepted, what do the Exhibit or Gallery Coordinators want the public to know?)

Email address and phone number



Making It Easy For The Editor

Include all of the information in one email or one snail mail 

Send  jpegs 

For each jpeg, please include Your Name, Title, Medium, Size and Price

No handwritten notes

Send a cohesive Press Release ( If you need help with this, we can suggest a template to get you started)

Follow up – with an email or a phone call to see if there is anything else you need to send

Other Points to Consider:

Ask the gallery or Exhibit Coordinator where their Press Releases were sent.

Ask if it is OK for you to send out a Press Release on your own behalf?

Do they want you to only use their press release or can you add some personalization to theirs?

How many exhibit or gallery cards will you be given to distribute?

While it is lots of fun to have your family and friends come to the Opening,  you also need to contact previous clients. Even if they don’t live nearby, this will pique their interest and remind them about your work.  The goal is to help bring in sales!


The Rickie Report is here to help you network.  We are read by artists and art patrons around the world. We look forward to hearing from you when you get accepted into an Art Show, Gallery or Exhibit and are giving a presentation or demonstration.  Please give us at least 3-4 weeks advance notice so we can place your article in our publication in a timely manner.  (There are times when we do have openings at the last minute, so it is always good to check…but it is best for YOU to be in touch as soon as you get your acceptance).


Your involvement in any Art Show, Exhibit or Gallery is a partnership.  

Be sure you are doing your part in making it successful! 


For coverage of your events, to place an advertisement, or speak to Rickie about appearing in The Rickie Report, contact:

Rickie Leiter, Publisher

The Rickie Report

P.O.Box 33423

Palm Beach Gardens, FL 33420


How to Market Your Art To Galleries

If you have been wondering how other artists arrange for their artwork to be shown in galleries, this is your opportunity!  Under the auspices of Arthouse429, Ilene Gruber Adams and Rickie Leiter will present “The Art of Marketing Your Art” in a two-part series.  Pre-registration is required.  The Rickie Report shares the details here.

The Art of Marketing Your Art

presented by

Ilene Gruber Adams and Rickie Leiter


ArtHouse 429 in Northwood

Session 1: October 23 | 7 – 9 pm

Session 2: November 13 | 7 – 9 pm

429 25th Street

West Palm Beach,  FL 33407




IleneArt of Marketing Your Work Print



What are galleries looking for

Preparing a portfolio

Presenting your work

Marketing your work

Using Social Media

Answering Calls to Artists

and more…

To sign up or get more details contact Ilene :

To  register:!the-art-of-marketing/cecc 


For coverage of your events, to place an advertisement, or speak to Rickie about appearing in The Rickie Report, contact The Rickie Report at:

Rickie Leiter, Publisher

The Rickie Report

P.O.Box 33423

Palm Beach Gardens, FL 33420


Kari Chapin Offers Personalized Approach to Marketing and a FREE Giveaway

Kari Chapin is a small business “how to” guru.  Her newest book offers crafters and artisans and  small businesses owners marketing basics.  She includes advertising and publicity, social media, selling online, in brick-and-mortar stores, and at fairs. She gives the one-woman business everything needed to become successful. The Rickie Report interviewed Kari, who lives in Portland,OR  for this article.  In addition to sharing her business suggestions, we are offering a FREE COPY of her book to our readers!  Kari will be offering a FREE webinar on July 5 & 6.  More details are in this article.




Kari Chapin’s


How to Sell Your Crafts Locally, Globally and Online!  



THE HANDMADE MARKETPLACE is aimed specifically at crafters, but the advice is universal.  This is an exceedingly practical guide on how to start a small business. (For example, the chapter entitled Establishing Basic Business Practices covers sole proprietorships, partnerships and corporations; getting a tax ID number; basic bookkeeping; collecting money; pricing work; hiring professionals such as lawyers, accountants and publicists.)  You may work at home alone but you’ll feel like the CEO of a Fortune 500 firm!






In 2010, Kari Chapin worked as a manager and buyer for an upscale store in the Berkshires (MA).  She was looking for high-end textiles with a partiality toward recycled fabrics.  By contacting sellers through Etsy, she was able to find the pieces she needed.  However,  she found it difficult to get them to stock their work in her store.




She tells The Rickie Report, “I saw that they didn’t have the business skills necessary to market themselves to the fullest of their potential.”    Kari is an activist!  She began working with those sellers and creators forming a business plan to help them sell their goods both wholesale and retails.  She helped them market themselves!




When the store she was working at closed, Kari decided to draw on her own dream of being a writer.  The result is her helpful and insightful book.  Kari speaks to the psyche of the crafter and the artist.  Owning a creative business is different than other retail businesses.  “Crafters and artists are selling something very personal, almost a part of themselves.  Their mittens or paintings are not just another commodity”, she explains.




Photo courtesy of


This is Kari’s second book, an updated version of the first.  This is a DIY crash course in entrepreneurship.  She has broken the book’s lessons/activities into three parts: “Getting to know yourself and your business; Spreading the word and images; and Getting down to selling.” There are tips from business cards, pricing, photographing your work to blogging and being your own boss.  This is an easy-to-read helpful and insightful book.




Kari Chapin

Kari Chapin


Kari believes that certain areas of the United States are more conducive to successful creativity.  “Anecdotally, I see that highly creative people across generational lines are successful when they live in an environment that promotes and supports handmade products.”  The Rickie Report believes that Southeast Florida is one of those areas.  Which is why we will be offering a FREE copy of Kari’s book to our readers!



To Enter the Drawing for a FREE Copy  of Kari’s Book:

  • Send your best business suggestion and 1 jpg of your work to:
  • Put “FREE book drawing” in Subject line
  • All suggestions will be entered into the drawing
  • The drawing will take place August 14th at 5pm
  • One winner will be picked from the drawing and notified by email
  • All entries will be considered for inclusion in a future article in The Rickie Report, giving proper identification to each suggestion.
  • Please include your email address, phone number and website


The next  CreativeLive Broadcast will take place July 5 & 6th. For more information go to:     

Or  visit .  

You may also contact us 


For coverage of your events, to place an advertisement, or speak to Rickie about appearing in The Rickie Report, contact The Rickie Report at:

Rickie Leiter, Publisher

The Rickie Report

P.O.Box 33423

Palm Beach Gardens, FL 33420