Do you know what the number one reason is for not being able to identify a work of art? The number one answer is a missing or illegible artist’s signature. Imagine if you will hundreds of years from now maybe in a gallery store room or attic, perhaps a thrift store, or tragically a dusty basement, someplace hidden anyway and its rescuer who found it wants to know “who created such a magnificent work of art?’ The number one way to identify yourself and your work is through your signature and yet many artists just don’t do it.
Don’t you kind of owe it to any finished piece of art to give it a proper send off? Your signature tells you as well as everyone else that “the work stops here and I’m satisfied with what I’ve created”. It’s your certified stamp of approval!
Being a polymer clay artist, this has actually been a huge problem for me. I have yet to find a consistent way to put my name on my pieces. I’m thinking that maybe I’ll just smush my big ol’ fingerprint right there in the clay. After all a finger print is one of the most definitive ways to identify an individual. Just remember to try to be consistent and if possible, sign your work in the medium in which it was created (pencil for limited editions and graphics). Consistency will cut back on others forging your artwork.
Regardless of how you sign the front of the piece it is important to have attached to it your full name and the date if possible. This may not seem that important but way down the line when you’ve created hundreds of works of art or lots of time has passed you’ll appreciate the dates being right there on the piece.
Who knows why artists don’t sign their work. I’m sure the reasons span the gamut and to be honest it doesn’t really matter why. Signing our work is something all artists should make their best effort to do as an important part of our processes and our art history, so go ahead and let the world know YOU are the one who made that magnificent work of art!