6 tips for coming up with a title for your artwork

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You may think that creating the art itself is the most difficult part of the creative process, however coming up with a title after the fact can be hard. Therefore, here are 6 tips for coming up with a title for your artwork that is sure to catch the eye of many potential buyers, art galleries, and world-famous collectors like Charles Saatchi.

1. Keep it short and simple (but still descriptive) 

Don’t be tempted to make your titles lengthy and complicated. Describe what is going on in the artwork, but don’t be too ambiguous. This will keep it short and simple to make them easy to understand and remember. 

It is also important to not be too personal with your title, even when you are being descriptive. No one except for your family members will be interested in buying a painting of your brother or sister. However, if you stuck to ‘the girl’ or ‘the boy’ then you will expand your audience to more potential buyers. 

2. Include the name of the location, especially if it is a famous place 

If the location of your artwork is famous, or somewhere people are familiar with, then this can help your artwork to be discovered by people who are interested in this place. Potential buyers might also want to know the name of the place, whether they would like to visit it one day in the future, or just because they are curious. 

3. Gear it to the specific genre 

What you should include in the title of your artwork generally depends on the specific genre of your piece. For example, portraits should include the individual’s name, occupation, and the date. However, landscapes should start with the location, maybe the time of day, and perhaps the mood. And paintings of historic events should be named according to the specific event. 

4. Start with the focal point of the genre 

The focal point of the artwork is the most apparent element of the piece, such as the person or primary elements in the foreground. By titling your artwork after the focal point this will help potential buyers to understand the piece better, no matter how abstract your style might be. 

5. Think about it whilst in the process of making the piece 

Some artists prefer to think about the title of their piece during the artistic process. Consider the colour schemes you are using, the design, the subject, the venue, the inspiration, and any thoughts of emotions you felt during the creative process. Remember to make it original, memorable, and catchy, and hold off on the cheese!

A good title can provide insight into your inspiration for the artwork and help the artwork to tell the story that you intended. However, it should also leave room for the admirer to bring their own interpretation to the table. 

6. And remember – never call it “Untitled”!

If you are selling online, naming your artwork ‘Untitled’ can cause it to become lost and overshadowed in the over-saturated results from a search engine. In fact, it will likely become buried so deep that your painting will never be found on a search engine results page. 

And if you are ever in doubt, just ask a friend for help! 


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