7 Brilliant Business of Art Books You Need to Read

Artwork Archive | August 28, 2015 (Updated April 12, 2021)

Looking for indispensable business of art guides? While webinars and blog posts are fantastic, it can be nice to do a bit of off-screen learning. Business of art books are a perfect alternative. From career development and art marketing to legal guidance and grant writing, there’s a book for almost anything you want to know. So get comfy, grab your favorite beverage, and set to learning from the experts.

Here are 7 brilliantly useful books to add to your business of art library:

1. The Artist’s Guide: How to Make a Living Doing What You Love

Expert:  Jackie Battenfield

Subject: Art Career Development

Jackie Battenfield has successfully made a living selling her art for over 20 years. She also teaches professional development programs for artists at Creative Capital Foundation and Columbia University. Art Biz Coach Alyson Stanfield believes this book is “quickly becoming the standard for artist career development.“ Jackie’s book is brimming with field-tested information on how to build and maintain a professional art career.

2. Fine Art Tips with Lori McNee: Painting Technique & Professional Advice

Expert: Lori McNee

Subject: Fine Art Techniques and Professional Advice

Learn fine art and art career tips from 24 of today’s best and brilliant artists. The book covers a wide range of subject, style, and includes 26 step-by-step demonstrations in oil, pastel, and acrylic. Author Lori McNee is the professional painter and social media pro behind the acclaimed blog FineArtTips.com. She shares that her book is “your chance to peer into the brilliant minds of twenty-four fine art professionals…!“

3. I'd Rather Be in the Studio: The Artist's No-Excuse Guide to Self-Promotion

Expert: Alyson Stanfield

Subject: Art Marketing

Alyson Stanfield, an art marketing expert and consultant, wrote this book to help you get your art out of the studio and into the spotlight. She’s worked with professional artists for more than 20 years and is the voice behind widely-popular The Art Biz Blog. Her book covers everything from social media and blogging secrets to insightful newsletter and artist statement tips.

4. How to Profit from the Art Print Market: Creating Cash Flow from Original Art (2nd Edition)

Expert: Barney Davey

Subject: Art Prints

Barney Davey is an authority on the world of fine art reproductions and giclee prints. If you want to profit from the print market, this book is for you. It’s loaded with excellent guidance on distribution, selling art online,  publicity, and social media and email marketing. The book also includes a comprehensive list of 500 art business and art marketing resources. Turn to Barney Davey’s book to expand your income through prints!

5. Legal Guide for the Visual Artist

Expert: Tad Crawford

Subject: Legal Guidance

Art law expert, Tad Crawford has created an indispensable legal handbook for artists. The book covers everything you’d want to know about contracts, taxes, copyright, litigation, commissions, licensing, artist-gallery relationships and much more. All the topics are accompanied by clear, thorough, practical examples. The book also includes plenty of sample legal forms and contracts as well as ways to find affordable legal advice.

6. Arts & Numbers: A Financial Guide for Artists, Writers, Performers, and Other Members of the Creative Class

Expert: Elaine Grogan Luttrull

Subject: Finance

Elaine makes finances, budgeting, and business affairs approachable and engaging. This CPA and artist wants artists to feel comfortable handling their finances so they can succeed in their business endeavors. And this is not your run-of-the-mill, dry finance book. Elaine weaves in interesting examples and pertinent personal stories. Read this for help with taxes, creating a budget, money management, business etiquette, and much more!

7. The Artist’s Guide to Grant Writing

Expert: Gigi Rosenberg

Subject: Grant Writing

Looking to improve your finances? Gigi’s warm and engaging book shows artists how to take advantage of all the financial resources available. The book includes field-tested tips and advice from grant officers, outstanding grant writers, and fundraising specialists. Make this your go-to guide for grant writing and fundraising so you can support your art career.

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