As the year winds down to a close, it’s a great time for gratitude and reflection. For artists, one of the groups of people we are most thankful for are the incredible patrons and collectors who support our work.

If you’ve ever experienced the joy of selling your art to someone who you know will treasure it, you know how special it is. Show your clients how much their support of your work means to you and you may find that they not only appreciate the gesture but end up buying from you again in the future. And don’t worry if you have a small budget or your clients live far away. Most people simply appreciate the effort you make to say thank you. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

1. Write a handwritten card.

The classic that never goes out of style. Take it a step further by having cards printed with images of your work or by hand-painting your own cards. Then, sit down and pen a note from the heart.

2. Post a thank you on social media.

Not everyone may have the time or resources to go the handwritten route, especially if you’re talking about hundreds or thousands of sales per year. However, you should still find another way to acknowledge those who have supported your work. Sharing a simple post on social media costs nothing and reaches many people from your audience at once. If your clients are also on social media and are okay with you reposting images of your work in their home(s), you can share their images, tag them, and say something recognizing them specifically.

3. Record a thank you video.

You can do this individually for VIP customers or record a more general video that you send to your client email list or share via social media. If you are shy in front of the camera, it could even be lip-syncing to a song that has ‘thank you’ in the lyrics. Have fun with it!

4. Include an extra artwork.

This is completely optional, but for your extra special buyers - those who you really connected with, have made multiple purchases from you, or who invested in a large artwork, you can gift them a smaller sketch or print.

5. Send a small item.

If you prefer not to give away artwork, that’s totally understandable. You can still gift your collectors items like sweets, flowers, postcards, or stickers. Think about what is a good match for you and your work.

6. Create a digital gift.

I recently had a curator thank me by sending a custom meditation she had created in collaboration with an artist. How unique and memorable is that?! As a digital product, it is a benefit to you in that it will likely be low-cost to make and easy to distribute. I’ve seen artists design phone wallpapers or coloring pages to share with their audience, but there are numerous other creative options!

7. Make an offer for a future purchase.

Along the same lines, you can also give your VIP’s a small discount, buy one get one offer, or free shipping on their next purchase.

8. Invite them for coffee.

If you have clients that are local and you are the type of person who enjoys meeting new people, having casual coffee meetups with your clients may be the perfect way to show your appreciation.

9. Pay it forward.

Remember the artist support pledge? It’s a pledge where artists worldwide offer affordable works online at around $250 or less. Once they sold over $1,000, they buy another artist’s work priced at $250. If you choose this option, you can tell your collectors that their investment in your work actually benefits other artists as well.

10. Give to charity.

If you prefer to donate to a charity, you can explain that part of the proceeds from your work benefits whatever cause or organization you choose to give to. Or, you can poll your audience to find out what charity they’d like to see you support.

What are some other creative ways of saying thank you that you’ve thought of or seen? Make a note of them when you find them and consider putting your own twist on it when you do your next round of thank you’s.

Since we’re on the topic of gratitude - we want to thank you so much for being here, dear reader. The Create! Magazine team sincerely appreciates you, our subscribers, and our community’s support over the years! We wouldn’t be here without you.