|Sarah Wimperis showing me her iPad portfolio|
Sarah: I think a big part of selling your work and yourself as an artist is presentation. Any painting will look infinitely better when the framing is carefully considered. Compare something that you have done stuffed in a clip frame to the same piece in a beautiful frame for example.
Visiting galleries or commissioning clients with a large cumbersome portfolio also fills me with dread, everything gets muddled, I get flustered and I hate it. So I wanted something smart and easy to use.
Anyway after making a kind of scrap book catalogue of all my paintings in an attempt to bring some order to my presentation Big Dave (her husband) suggested an ipad (I had secretly wished for one but it did feel like a self indulgent extravagance!). He said "Why not try one out, after all you wouldn't paint with inferior paints so why present yourself in a scrap book kind of way". He had a point.
So we visited a shop and I played with one.
In the future I will take two smallish framed pieces, to see and hold and the rest in the ipad.
Tell me how it works. What do you do to create a portfolio on your iPad? How did you get the images of your work on to the iPad and into galleries?
Sarah: It is very easy to use, I simply make a folder on my computer of images that I want. For example:
- if I was to visit someone who wanted to commission a painting of their house or garden I would make a folder of garden paintings.
- If I was then going to see a gallery that dealt in marine paintings I would also make a folder to hold paintings of boats and another with water paintings, I might further separate out the watercolours and the oils.
It is very simple and as I have all my images on my computer anyway because I blog and use Flickr it was extremely easy to do.
You can further customise it by adding your own wallpapers and screen savers. As with any apple product it seems to be very easy to use. "Intuitive" I think is the word.
|The iPad provides large format images which fit the screen whatever the format|
plus you can zoom in on any part of the image
- what are the advantages for you in using an iPad as a portfolio?
- what can the iPad do for you in terms of displaying your work?
For example say your client suddenly said "I love your flower paintings but what I really have a secret passion for is cats, you don't do cats do you" you could respond with a "Voila! Why yes...here are some extraordinarily expensive but beautiful cat paintings that I have done" and bobs your uncle, you have clinched the deal!!
You can also find work very quickly if you organise it well and you can zoom in easily on any part of any image.
Which iPad did you buy - and do you think you made the right choice?
Sarah: I brought the least expensive, the 16 GB, which is fine, more than adequate as far as capacity goes.
However I was totally unprepared for how user friendly it is, how easy browsing the internet would be with it and while I can use the internet at home or in a wifi free place, I think now that the £100 extra to get the 16GB one with 3G and Wi-Fi would have been money well spent. [Making A Mark Note: That would have also involved the cost of access to a broadband supplier - which is the bit I'm stuck on at the moment. To 3G or not to 3G - that is the question!]
The apps that you can get are fantastic as well, I have got sketchbook pro, and spent the journey back from London happily drawing the motorway with my finger, it won't replace my sketchbooks but is fantastic fun and, well, the more drawing, in whatever shape or form, the better!
Would a netpad do the same thing?
Sarah: I am not sure, I don't think the net pads are as sleek, thin and easy to hold. I haven't tried one. I do know that Apple is very user friendly and I can't find much wrong with my ipad. Actually I can't fault it!
How does it work tax-wise as a business expense?
Sarah: I haven't checked it through with my accountant but I think it would be very legit as a business expense, I have it totally for my business. I wouldn't have brought one if I wasn't doing what I do, but I am jolly glad that I had to!
[Making A Mark Note: My understanding is that if used for business then it is tax deductible. However it is unlikely that you can claim relief as a lump sum in one year. It's very likely that relief would apply in the same way as for any business related capital expenditure on fixed assets such as the method approved for you claiming tax relief for the essential business expense of a computer]
Which people do you think would stand to benefit most from using an iPad as a portfolio?
Sarah: Anyone making presentations of images - a photographer, illustrator or artist. It shows films hugely well so animators and filmmakers will love it. Storyboarding would be fabulous on it.
It also has very good calendar and notebook apps so anyone wanting to organise, it is like a 21st century filofax.
I am currently trying to work out how to make my own apps, I want to have apps for artists, like little workshops or demos that you could have for sale on your blog or web site, or even collections of paintings that people could collect and enjoy! I totally love it.
I did a bit more research as a result of Sarah's news that the iPad works well as a portable portfolio.
This is a photographer talking about its potential as a portfolio and how it works in practice
- iPad Portfolio: Game Changer HD Jeff Singer saw the potential from the off and was an early adopter; this post comments on his experience of using it as a portfolio
I did have to make new versions of all the images I wanted on the iPad since most of my “web ready” images were at a lower resolution. I made them about twice as large as the iPad’s resolution so a viewer can zoom in and still see a sharp image.