The reading for our class “Uses of Blogs Part 3” was four chapters covering scholarly blogging, political blogging, and gender issues surrounding blogging. One type of blog it did not cover was artistic blogging, or otherwise blogging as used by artists. This can manifest itself in two primary ways: content blogging and information blogging.
Content blogging is the posting of artistic content on a blog. For example, a fiction writing posting works of fiction or a painter posting digital pictures of their paintings (preferrably in a large size so as to be usable) would both be content blogging. Literally, the art they create is accessible on their blog and/or website.
Informational blogging is the posting of information relevant to the artist’s work. This may include release dates for products such as books or albums or art show dates, links to purchase the artist’s work online, or even insightful posts about the artist’s artistic process or what their work means to them.
Informational blogging would be primarily done by well-known artists that people actually give a shit and would care to know more about. Best selling authors, popular musicians and similar artists would have the most reason to blog about their work and themselves. However, aspiring or lesser known artists may use this kind of posting to generate interest in what they do. It would in fact be practically necessary for them to practice this type of posting if requested in their comments.
Content blogging would be most likely conducted by lesser known or aspiring artists for the reason that they have not gained access to the typical channels of distribution- they don’t have a publisher, a record label, the number of the guy who organizes art shows, etc. Because they can not (at least yet) get onto book shelves or CD racks, the internet is the best place to put their content where the most people will see it, including potential fans (ie buyers) as well as industry scouts who can then help these artists gain access to the more effective distribution channels.
As in the case of commenters asking for information about a lesser-known artist, each type of posting can cross over to each kind of artist quite a bit. There’s no line. Some well-known artists will still post their content online but offer their work in more tangible forms for a price. This is the case with many webcomics, such as xkcd and the ever popular Penny Arcade. Penny Arcade is practically famous- a big enough deal to have it’s own exposition show (PAX: Penny Arcade Expo) at which video game developers themselves give exhibitions on their upcoming games or updates to recently-released games. While they post every strip they create on their website, they also offer prints and merchandise.
A closer look will be given to this subject (stay tune to the weekly summaries!) and additional anecdotes will be added to this post. Specifically, the an examination of the ways in which actual artists use their blogs. Please, if you know of any artistic blogs you would like examined, leave a link in the comments.