Aspiring artists in Dubai are increasingly using social media platforms to share their work, develop their brand and expand their following.
As these platforms transcend geographical boundaries, artists see them as the best place to showcase their talent and tap into opportunities in today’s competitive market.
They use tools such as Twitter and Instagram to display their work and build networks in the hope that their products and services get the market they deserve.
A wider exposure
In diverse cities such as Dubai, where there is a lot of competition, self-promotion is crucial in order to receive any form of exposure. Having online presence increases one’s chance of getting recognized by potential employers. Freelance graphic designer and journalism student Stephanie Bridget Goveas uses social media to showcase her talents to the public.
Speaking to Al Arabiya English, Goveas said: “My first client was a musician from the US who required cover art for his album.” Now, Goveas supplies posters, album covers and beauty product packages for several individuals and companies across the globe. She says social media allows you to have job opportunities from abroad.
According to Goveas, social media also provides artists with an opportunity to show how well they can get their jobs done, and hence earn credibility through quality and hard work.
Digital artist and design management graduate Aram Shatat says she owes most of her brand’s success to these digital platforms. “I get enquiries about commissions and collaboration opportunities that wouldn’t have been possible without social media,” she said.
Shatat has also managed to showcase her work in several exhibitions through online submissions.
The phenomenon of artists growing by supporting one another via online promotions, advice and referrals has also been observed.
Social media enables communication between the artists, which increases one’s chances of becoming recognized and supported by others within the community. Through Instagram, Goveas said her art was featured on pages with huge followings.
Help and feedback are also commonly offered on social media, which creates a sense of belonging between the artists and builds trust, thereby increasing the probability of employment through recommendations and referrals.
Goveas said networking with other artists introduced her to new clients and expanded her work opportunities.
Exposure to other artists and art forms has an influence as it introduces artists to several genres, providing them with insight that cannot be achieved if they remained restricted by their physical boundaries. Shatat said this kind of exposure enabled her to develop her own style, which helps her stand out from others.
Multimedia design student Arpana Murugappan said that social media exposure, she was able to move past traditional drawings into various forms of art including digital illustrations, video edition and 3D modeling.
Due to the tight-knit community of artists in Dubai, people are more likely to share rather than hoard resources, which facilitate the process of learning required for an artist’s evolvement.
Social media holds an advantage of immediacy over traditional platforms. Artists are able to receive immediate feedback from professionals, colleagues and their following.
It also facilitates interactions between artists and their audiences. Tags, hashtags and filtering option on social media platforms enables artists to reach a niche audience and create more of the demanded content.
Shatat said Instagram allows her to easily engage with her followers, which made it possible for her to understand the kind of content they want.