Monday, July 06, 2009

Bethel Art Fair Recap

So Saturday was my first art show of the year. Here's how it went.
(scroll down to the bottom if you just want to see the photos)

Friday

7:00 PM-9:30 PM: Janet threw a party for the Shy, Novice, and Closeted Art Show. I was the graduate this year so they sponsored my booth for the show on the Common.

The party was a lot of fun. There was wonderful food provided by some of the artists in the show and Janet's house looked gorgeous with all the art displayed. The party didn't go totally smooth, shortly after it started a big thunderstorm hit, so we lit candles around the house just in case the power went out.

10:00 PM: I get home and with my dad get the truck packed up to go. I don't get to bed until 12:00 AM.

Saturday
5:30 AM: I get up to get ready for the show. I got maybe 4-4.5 hours of sleep. This was not a good idea. We also had to repack the truck to make sure none of the boxes got wet because it was raining a bit.

7:00 AM: Arrive at the show, check in, start setting up the booth. It was still raining but lightly.

9:00 AM: Show starts. There was a good crowd starting off pretty early and the first half of the day went great. This is when I made the most sales and got a lot of compliments on my work. I sold one of my octopus necklaces to a lady who wanted to give it to her daughter who's a veterinarian and octopus lover which was just great.

Why do so many people break the rules? The show stated very plainly that dogs were not welcome but there were so many there. I have no problem with well trained dogs (and most were wonderful and friendly) but why bring a puppy that isn't even leash trained yet? Luckily I had no mishaps with dogs knocking things over but it was close.

12:00 PM: Friends Danyelle and James come to help me out the rest of the day.

12:30 PM: 10 minute downpour. Unfortunately this is when the show started dwindling in visitors, the rain drove off a lot of them and they didn't return. Still had a good crowd but not as good as in the morning.

There were a ton of kids at the show, a lot more than I've seen at other shows I've done. Most of the kids were great and a lot of fun. There was one boy in particular who was probably about 9 or 10 who loved my squid necklaces. He came and looked at them then ran off and brought his mom back, she said no. About 5 minutes later he was back with his dad who also said no. I'm surprised I didn't see him back with a grandparent. I felt kind of bad for him but I don't blame his parents, the necklace is $30 and while my necklaces are fairly tough I don't think they could survive an active 9 year old boy for too long.

4:00 PM: Show wrapped up and with Danyelle and James' help I got everything packed up pretty quickly except the canopy. It had started to rain again just after 4 so we waited under the canopy until my dad arrived with the truck.

Good:
  • There was a great crowd with a lot of enthusiastic people.
  • The organizers and other artists there were all incredibly friendly and helpful.
  • Sales met my goal, obviously selling more would always be great but the show is about getting my name out more than making a lot of cash.
Bad:
  • The weather.
  • Visitors did skew to older folks and couples with young kids which are not my best audience.
  • I didn't set up my booth in the best way I think. Too much high priced sculpture, next show I'm not bringing so much. Also I should have arrange the tables in an outward face U that people could walk around rather that face in because not enough people could fit inside the area.
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