While technically this isn’t a rant because I’m not in any way angry, it does lean a bit on the vulgar side.
You have been warned!
Umm, yeah. So the event didn’t quite go as planned. It rained while we were setting up and then the sun came out and stayed out all day. It got hot.
The high heat coupled with sales so infinitesimal as to be non existent makes for seriously cranky 2-d artists. I say this because the jeweler next to me killed as did of course my beloved potter friend. I had a good friend (and fellow critter painter) as a neighbor which i enjoyed because I usually do only one event a year with him. He does awesome and delicate bird watercolors, though frankly his landscapes are stunning and my personal favorite. He doesn’t have a website so no link.
Why The Low Sales?
The Lakes Art Center event was larger this year than before and because like most art events looking to make a buck, when they discovered artists will pay more for a corner spot they created all these little island of booths and scattered them around the park. On the plus side this makes the event look huge but it also makes it more challenging to navigate and to return to any particular artist.
We (myself and the 2 other 2d artists in my booth island) were on the far end (as well as back side) of the fair layout. This is never a good location. A couple other painter friends of mine both had a moderate to good event and both were located closer to the heart. But who knows why. I’ve been doing this long enough that I don’t get bent out of shape. Though my neighbor swore he would never return.
I’m not sure why but I found it all lightly amusing. Usually earning next to nothing while I sweat off 20 pounds of water weight does not get this kind of response. Perhaps I’ve been doing this so long there are no surprises left. Or perhaps I’ve had much bigger trials in my life lately which make a bad show seem completely inconsequential. Whatever the reason I’m back in the gallery and itching to start a new piece of art. (read that as, I “want” to start something but I’ve spent most of my day ambling aimlessly and drawing cartoons for this post)
Sadly though I was so distracted with trying to remain conscious in the heat that I didn’t take any pictures. So I drew a before and after picture of myself to illustrate the trauma that was this event.
Buy Something Or Get The Hell Out!
I can’t tell you how many people asked for a business card because it was “too hot to shop and decide on exactly which print they wanted.” This is frustrating because most of the time they never follow through and order online. Most likely they will buy the following year instead, which is okay but I’m pretty sure I won’t be back at least for a couple of years.
The heat and lack of sales did make me less than perky. Not cranky mind. Just not my bubbly effervescent self. I have been in worse moods (though doubtful any worse events) because I remained pleasant and when startled out of my haze by a passerby felt no need to glower at them. And when things go really downhill I get to feeling kinda of stabby and do not suffer fools well.
I’m all “No, you can’t charge that $2 greeting card,” and “Yes that original painting is $1200.00 and not a $12.00 typo” or when some comedic genius makes the oh so moronic “Horse’s Ass” comment (that I’ve heard for the millionth time,) I start fishing around for something pointy in which to end them with. A sure sign I’ve hit rock bottom is when it takes all my strength not to scream “Buy something or get the hell out!”
At one event several years ago my brother was at an event with me and he’s like “So you just sit here and watch the turds float by.” I’m like “Yeah, pretty much.” That is as good an explanation of what this event was like for me as any.
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