Monday, February 26, 2007

Taxes for Artists

After being asked to speak at several seminars about taxes and the business of artists, I thought I'd make it my duty to create this blog entry on taxes for artists. As an artists you are totally focused on your creation and could care less about the business at times. I want to give you some quick tips on how to manage your tax situation.

First, keep track of spending. I would say throw all reciepts for purchases into an envelope or file. then at the end of each month sort and reciepts to get totals for art supplies, materials, transportation and meals for example.

Next, if you use your home for your studio or to create art and sell, make sure you have a specific room or location in the house designated for just that. Make one part of the house solely for doing your work. You will have successfully create an office in home situation qualifying you for a deduction for home expenses for your business.

Then, keep records of all income you make, then at the end of the year you can provide this to your tax preparer along with any 1099's or w-2's you recieve. I recommend this because often employers may or may not provide you with the required 1099. Its up to you to record and report this income to the IRS whether you recieved a 1099 or not.

Lastly, hire a professional tax preparer. Be sure to hire someone familiar with tax prep for artists and who has references. There are several tax prep services to choose from but not everyone has the specialized experience for your particular situation.

This is some quick advice. Check back frequently for more info on related topics.