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Calling all visual artists! In this blog post, we’re demystifying the world of tax write-offs tailored specifically for visual artists. From sketching supplies to art classes, join us as we navigate through a palette of potential business deductions.

Tax Write-Offs for Visual Artists 🎨🖌

Want an overview of write-offs before diving in? Check out our previous post!

In general, if you plan on claiming any of these items/services as a write-off, always keep your receipts.

Equipment and Supplies 🖌
  • Art supplies (canvases, paintbrushes, paint, pastels, etc.)
  • Framing used to display your art
Professional Services ✨
  • Gallery fees
  • Printing services
  • Union dues
  • Legal fees
  • Accountants
  • Financial software (like Sai 😉)
  • Consultants
Promotional Expenses 💻
  • Professional photos/videos
  • Website subscriptions
  • Business cards
  • Shipping
Education 📚
  • Art classes to enhance your skills
  • Studio fees
  • Workshops, masterclasses, and seminars
  • Tickets to museums and art events (considered research expenses to know what’s happening in the industry)
  • Subscriptions useful for art (design software like Adobe CC or an art magazine)
Travel 🚗
  • Local commute expenses related to exhibitions, art shows, and classes, such as subway fares, taxis, tolls, and car gas, maintenance, and insurance
  • Travel expenses related to exhibitions, art shows, and classes, such as plane tickets and accommodation costs
Aesthetics 💄
  • Initial makeup and hair costs related to a specific job
  • Wardrobe used only for the job
  • Dry cleaning and repair costs of the wardrobe
Food and Beverage ☕︎
  • 50% of the cost of meals while travelling for business
  • Food purchased as part of a business meeting
Capital Cost Allowance 💸

Some expenses can be deducted all at once, while others need to be spread out over time. This gradual deduction is known as depreciation or, for tax purposes, capital cost allowance (CCA). Basically, it means that each year, a portion of what you spent on certain things becomes a deductible expense. The percentage depends on what you bought. Expenses that cost over $300 and/or last a long time usually get deducted this way. Some examples are:

  • Cell phone
  • Computer
  • Drawing tablet/iPad

Feeling like this is a lot to remember? 🙃

That’s literally why we made Sai. Because we know you don’t have time for this!

Sai will:

  • Track + categorize all your expenses
  • Give you estimates of how much tax you owe each month, so you can put that money away and NOT spend it lol
  • File your taxes at the end of the year!