How Artists Can Make an Effective Press Kit

By Carolyn Edlund

Here’s a perfect opportunity to get in front of the press.


press kit


I recently attended a major trade show and checked out the press room. Press kits (also called media kits) were available from some of the exhibitors in the press area, but the vast majority of exhibitors did not offer them. I’d say only about 10% of exhibitors had bothered to put them together.

This isn’t unusual – it happens at most shows. Many artists are simply not participating in what could be phenomenal publicity for them – and that is your big opportunity. Yes, I know there are a million things to do when getting ready for a trade show, but you are paying good money to get there. Make the most of it by putting together your press kit.

What is a press kit?

It’s a packaged set of promotional materials about you and your business that is distributed to members of the media in order to get exposure and publicity. You can get lots of extra mileage out of your show by using press kits to gain exposure through interviews, mentions and images in publications, blogs, television or other media.

It’s easy to make one using a 9″ x 12″ folder with pockets inside that can easily hold a number of items. You might want to put a label on the front cover with your logo or company name.

 Your press kit may include:

  • Your Contact Information – on every piece in your kit.
  • Your Booth Number at the show.
  • A short cover letter (called a pitch letter) introducing you and basically telling the press why they should care about you and why they should write about you.
  • Copies of other recent press coverage you have gotten – or a list of publications where you have gotten press coverage.
  • Your brochure.
  • Your photo. This could be a headshot or perhaps a photo of you working in the studio.
  • An interesting “bio” (this is not your CV). Just a few paragraphs written in a friendly, approachable style that gives interesting information about yourself and your work. Tell your story.
  • Photos of your portfolio or your production line. Make sure these are gorgeous shots, which would look great in a magazine spread.
  • Terms, prices and other pertinent information about your work.
  • A CD or DVD of your portfolio, an interview with you, or a video of you working in your studio.
  • Your Business Card (these can easily fit into slots provided in most pocket folders)
  • A sheet which gives story ideas for the press. Categorize them – for example, “Recycled Art,” “Wedding Gifts,” “Childrens Bedroom Décor Ideas” or any other niches that your work falls into. Write a paragraph under each category telling the press what you have to offer when they write stories about those topics.

Make it easy for press to find you, use your images, and write stories about you – and they will. Reporters and bloggers are always looking for story material. When you have done a lot of the work for them, it makes it almost effortless for them to include you in their article and make their deadline.


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  1. I loved the information that you provided about putting together a press kit. I am an artist trying to gain in exposure. I am taking over my website so I can change pictures at will instead of calling my web guy. After I finish it, I will utilize this idea to gain more exposure in my local community papers. Thank you for all the time and research you have done to help artists.

  2. Tresa Meyer Clark says

    Thanks Carolyn for another great article!

  3. I don’t attend trade shows and wonder if it’s ok to prepare something similar to a press kit to send to shop owners, magazine editors, etc? I always enjoy ABI’s articles… so much information!

  4. Thank you for the article. It is very useful for anyone with an upcoming special event. Great information!!

  5. Great article and awesome tips for aspiring artists. I’ll be putting my press kit together soon. Thanks Carolyn.

    • Thanks Mary, press kits can be really useful. Sometimes people think of them as only for trade shows and other similar events, but if you have a few tucked away for just the right meeting, you can hand one to a reporter and get some eyes on your art!

  6. This was very helpful – thank you! I’d better get going on my press kit… 🙂

  7. Hi Carolyn, Very interesting article. Always thought a digital version was all that’s required these days, but I can see the benefit at trade shows.

    • Thanks for your reply, Cathy. I definitely feel that a physical kit can make a huge difference. It can be seen and saved, and helps the press to remember you.

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