As Autumn draws to an end and the summer art show seasons door had closed there is a new window opening. You get it. The hole "one door closes and another one opens" thing. I had hoped that with the somewhat strengthening economy I would begin to experience a stronger art market beginning to take shape. Not so much. What I have noticed at all the shows and art fairs that I've done in the last couple of years is that 2-D art is taking a big hit. Their just seems to be less and less buyers for original 2-D.
I've been working on Polymer clay sculptures and figurines for most of the past year with pretty good results in sales. I enjoy this medium and it is responsible for most of the years earnings.
The only problem is that I really miss painting.
Simultaneously I have been looking into licensing my art so that my images can be produced on other products while I get to stay in my studio painting. There's a happy thought! Royalty checks coming to me while I sleep, and paint of course.
So after sending out one portfolio I was pleasantly surprised to receive an invitation to partner with Art Licensing International out of Vermont.
This would mean that one might find my work adorning many types of products such as wall art, fabrics, puzzles, clothing, greeting cards and much more.
So with that said I have signed the contract and the company begins promotion of my work.
Here is the link to my page at ALI.
Here's to new ventures!
Tuesday, August 16, 2016
It's been two years since my last trip to Florida when I camped in the everglades and scheduled four back to back weekend art fairs. While I was there I checked out the Village of the Arts in Bradenton which is next to Sarasota.
I just returned home from a 10 day visit of checking out the area in more detail and again visiting the village during their Art Walk which is the first Friday and Saturday of each month. I had never been to Florida during the Summer so I thought this was the perfect time to see if I was just as enamored with the area at it's hottest time of the year. It turns out that I'm pretty smitten with the place even more.
Village of the Arts is a working artist colony that was started about 13 years ago and is steadily growing. The concept is to live and work out of your home in the midst of a culturally rich and artistically vibrant setting where your collectors come to you. This is an artists dream!
The photos don't lie, This place is colorful and fun and just plain happy.
The plan is to begin the process of becoming one of the happy villagers in the near future, (assuming the family's on board).
Time will tell!
Sunday, July 31, 2016
As a working artist you set personal goals as a kind of step ladder to advance your career and climb to the next level of success. More sales, higher price points, bigger and better shows. For me and many artists over the years the Ann Arbor Art Fair was one of the premier events for an artist to get in to. It was and is still well known all over the country.
I was very fortunate and grateful to have been selected as the Guilds featured artist for my inaugural year in 2010. What I didn't realize at that moment was that it was also the year that I peaked at this fair. Here's the problem. The public seems to be getting tired of it and many of the artists seem to feel the same way. It's the most difficult art fair of the year to do. For most of us it's six long days of exhausting work during the hottest days of the summer not to mention the extreme expense of this show which is at least $800 if you're a local. Much more if you're not. I must sell $800 worth of my product just to get back to $0. I can deal with that as long as I can expect more sales considering the longevity of this show and the sheer number of visitors reported by the fair organizers.
Unfortunately, regardless of what the show organizers are saying, the crowds are down dramatically. I remember when you had to take baby steps to get to the next booth in a tight crowd. Now I could bounce a ball across the street from my booth to the one on the other side and not hit anyone.
Amazingly the show organizers look you right in the eye and say, "the crowds are just as strong this year as ever" or "the buses are always full". The buses may be full however I remember when you had to wait in a long line for 45 minutes to catch a bus. No waiting now!
I read an article on Art fair Insiders that was written by Nels Johnson titled, "Put a fork in it", whos' booth was just a few away from mine. He had a similar view. Here is the link.
I was so looking forward to a long relationship with the Ann Arbor Art Fair however it looks like 6 years is the magic number for me. There was a glimmer of hope that its heartbeat would strengthen, however it's flat-lined for a while now and it's time to pull the plug. This fair has been ridding on the wave of its' former glory but alas it's time to say Good Bye Ann Arbor Art Fair. (Play Taps here).