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10 Aug 2017
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ARTIST IN FOCUS: The Moose is Loose! Charles Pachter talks shop

Visual artist Charles Pachter shares the secret of his success (which is no real secret), Queen on Moose, and the art of shameless promotion.

By Guinevere Pura – Blogger, Communications Professional and Photographer

Well known Canadian artist, Charles Pachter, sometimes described as Canada’s Andy Warhol, calls himself shameless.  Why?  Because he says that signing a commercial deal with Hudson’s Bay Company (HBC)  is way more important to him than having his paintings shown at the National Gallery of Canada.

At 74, Charles Pachter, hasn’t lost any steam.  His controversial 1973 portrait of Queen Elizabeth on moose-back – satirizing Elizabeth as the queen of Canada –  gave him instant fame and shame and his sense of fun, and his vigour hasn’t slowed him down.

One of Pachter’s work on HBC’s products

 

Me and Charles, August 2017

I interviewed the artist last spring and had the opportunity to visit his downtown Toronto Studio and home, the Pachter Hall & Moose Factory this August.  Pachter produces at least 50 paintings a year, which are sold to many collectors across the country.  He was named a Member of the Order of Canada in 1999 and promoted to officer in 2011 for his outstanding achievement in the arts, and his dedication to serving his community and the country.  Despite many years of high recognition and enormous sales and praise, no Pachter painting has yet been shown at the National Gallery of Canada, and says he doesn’t care.  The curators in large galleries are of a different breed.  Perhaps the kind that may not appreciate Pachter’s sense of humour, fun or controversy expressed in some of his paintings.  Non-the-less, he is admired by art collectors and enthusiasts across the nation.

Being an artist for collectors than a national gallery helped build Pachter’s reputation among buyers and made him financially stable.  “What’s more important is that the painting matches the curtains or your couch,” he says.  His philosophy of making art for the client has steered him clear of the traditional “starving” role. And treating your art like a product rather a piece of your soul can likely feed your soul much better.  Selling a painting to a large retailer such as the Hudson’s Bay Company for example, can grant an artist a pretty penny and plenty of exposure.  It worked for Pachter.

Applying for grants and waiting for a response will not often bring financial gain, nor will it make you famous.  Promoting art like a commercial product can do both.  “Canada is not so sophisticated at making stars,” he says, commenting on the Canadian art market, “I don’t want to be the Lady Gaga of the United States and besides, it’s more fun to be a big fish in a little pond.”

 

This dedicated artist gave me three points of advice to share with emerging artists:
  1. Find a good support system. “I have my followers and people who like what I do here in Canada.”  In addition to his loyal fans, his supporting family knew he was ‘special’ and put him in art classes at age 10.  His mother often joked about the time he painted the walls with own waste as a two-year-old.  Hi Nanny was furious, he recalls. “I had nothing else to paint with.  Since then we all knew that I was going to be an artist.”
  2. “Shamelessly promote yourself by following the 10/90 rule – 10% work and 90% promotion.” Pachter is a relentless promoter and also has private agents who promote him.  Early in his career, he posted ads in the Globe and Mail and met potential clients face to face.
  3. Don’t give up. “It can take three to four decades of consistent hard work to reach even a small level of success.”

 

If artists could add a touch of Pachter’s vigour, and vitality to their portfolio, it might give them a better chance of financial gain in the tough Canadian art world.


More of Pachter’s work can be purchased by appointment at Pachter Hall & Moose Factory,

22 Grange Ave., Toronto M5T 1C7

647-239-1700


13 Apr 2015
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From Sale to Sold! 5 tips to make it in real estate

Real estate Agent Toronto GTA Real Estate

Stand up and stand out

It’s a tough market out there. And with nearly 60, 000 real estate agents in Ontario alone, and 67% of them serve the GTA, how do you stand out?

Consider defining a niche market. Know one area, the neighbourhood, and the profile of the people in one community. Specializing in a key area will make you different from the rest, buyers will trust you, and give you more selling power in the neighbourhood you know best.

 

Techno What?

Yes, technology. You know, computers, cell phones. Moreover, texting, email, virtual tours, professional photos. Most of your clients will be Generation Y (“Millennials” born between 1981-2001). And to keep up to their speed, you better know what will grab them.

Most of Gen Y buyers are first time buyers – and have high expectations. First time home owners want the luxury of purchasing homes that are move in ready – strongly influenced by many home improvement television programs such as Property Brothers and Love it or List it. These kids text before they talk, spend more time in front of a screen unlike any other generation before them. They shop online and like moving images – better known as virtual tours – and like crisp clean professionally photographed images. Because, you know, everyone has a smart phone.

So get with the program. Get a good real estate photographer and videographer and make your homes look good online as they do in person.

 

Have a presence online

Hire a professional to build your website. There’s nothing more disappointing than looking at beautiful houses on an ugly or not user friendly website. Keep it simple, clean and straightforward. Buyers are there to look at homes. They don’t need the distraction of decorated backgrounds or unwanted ads.

Blogging is a must! Sharing your thoughts on the market or your expertise in your neighbourhood will garner interest and build a relationship with potential clients. Show off what you know. Educating others won’t make them buy houses without an agent; it will only want them to trust one.

Social media is a must! Go on Linkedin, Twitter, and Instagram. Yes Instagram. With the majority of users are of Gen Y, and 68% are heavily skewed towards women (single women are the largest segment of home buyers next to couples), it’s worth posting on Instagram.

 

Be consistent

There are two main ways to be consistent: time management and persona.

Be honest and true to yourself. There’s nothing more distrustful than being a phony online or in person. Most people can sense dishonesty from a mile away. The best way to be consistent of who you are, is by being who you are.

Blog on a regular basis. Whether it’s one a week, once, a month, or once a day (which may be a little much), be sure to maintain that routine. People like routine and look forward to your next post. If it’s every Thursday you post, keep it that way. If it’s the first of every month, keep it up.

 

Build your Professional Team

Rome wasn’t built in a day, nor did one person build it. Your main goal is to sell homes, not build websites, shoot houses or stage them. Leave that to your team of professionals. They are there to help you. Perhaps it may be a big investment from the start, but it will pay off.

In the long run, they will be your ‘go to’ people you trust. And when you trust them, you build your trusted brand. By using your team of service providers will ensure that your client is taken care of. What is the end result, you ask? Referrals and repeat customers. That’s the kind of brand you want.