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Inventory Control in the Studio

December 11, 2008

paintings-for-key-westAt long last, after having a rented storage space for almost a year, I went down yesterday, cleared it out and brought all my paintings home. It simply no longer made sense to pay for offsite storage for paintings that probably aren’t going to sell soon.

It was nice having them out of my way, but the only real long-term solution for those is to take them off the stretchers. I can do that a little at a time. Then, if I ever need them for a show, I can re-stretch them. It’s easy with practice.

The other component of inventory control that I want to get better at is my digital inventory. I do have a database of paintings in Microsoft Access, but I don’t have a field for jpegs.

The software version is really old, and it became buggy, so I haven’t updated it for a couple of years. Still, the existing database could easily be imported into a more streamlined software, but I haven’t gotten that far. I’ve heard good things about Working Artist, but I think it might be overkill.

Here’s what my database keeps up with:

Title, medium, size, description, date created, several fields for shows, a couple of fields for galleries, date sold, sold to name and address, price. I need to add a picture of each one!

How do you track your art inventory?

14 Comments leave one →
  1. December 12, 2008 11:48 am

    Hi Martha, I use’s eArtist3 database. I ordered it off the internet. So far, it’s really great, & has everything I need.

  2. December 12, 2008 11:52 am

    Tracy, your low tech solution is a good one. Sometimes I wonder if all that time on the computer is worth it.

    Sherrill, thank you for that suggestion. I’ve done similar things on a rather small scale.

  3. December 12, 2008 12:06 pm

    Thanks Stephanie — I’ll have to give it a trial run. I downloaded the free trial version of WorkingArtist yesterday and immediately saw that it’s way too overkill for me and uninstalled it. Thanks for stopping by.

  4. December 12, 2008 1:35 pm

    I recently started using Artist’s Butler,

    It works well with my Mac OSX Leopard, and iphoto. I started with the free demo, and quickly paid the $30 for the full version. I can sort records by many fields, including medium, size, whether it has sold. It was quite exciting to have a printed inventory list with color thumbnails of my work in time for a show I was doing.

  5. December 12, 2008 2:45 pm

    Margaret, I like the looks of that software too. Thanks for sharing the link.

  6. December 13, 2008 10:16 am

    I just started using Flick! and it seems pretty good.

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