Monday, March 3, 2008

T minus 10, 9, 8, 7…..

During the show season, Mondays are usually spent behind the steering wheel of my truck driving home from a far off art festival. Most shows run something like this.

Thursdays are spent setting up your “mini art gallery” under the roof of your canopy and stocking it with your art.

Friday, Saturday and Sundays are “show time” where you hope to entice enough people to walk into your booth and hopefully leave with a piece of your art.

Sunday is also break down day. After the show has finished there’s a mad dash to pack your art and display gear and either start your drive home or head back to where you’ll spend yet another night on the road and rest up for your drive home the next day.

So starting next Monday, a week from today that all too familiar routine starts for me again. Hey, 2008 show season, here I come.

Today though, officially starts the count down until I jump in the truck Thursday and head off into the great white open. (Literally, we’re having a whale of a snowstorm as I write this post) This first show of my season is sort of a local one for me. It’s held in Spokane Washington, which is only about 125 miles from home so I consider this my only local show of the year.

The name of the event is “Custer’s 31st Annual Spring Arts & Craft Show.” From the name you can see that this show has been around along time and is run by the daughter and son-in-law of the founder, Jim Custer. This well attended and professionally run event, although smaller than more shows I do, is one I keep coming back to because the cost to sales ratio, ease of set-up and closeness to home makes this the perfect show to start my season with in order to work out my winter time cobwebs.

So even though I spent a great deal of time over my break creating new art, getting it framed and reading myself for the next 10 months on the road, today begins T minus 10 and counting. I’ve been able to print nearly 500 pieces of my old standbys that I ran out of last year plus my new 2008 creations over the past month and today I’m selecting 100 or so to frame in order to take with me this week.

This selection process is always a headache for me. I stock over 200 different images in 5 different sizes and then try and fit them into a 10 foot by 10 foot booth and still leave room for me and my customers, I think you get the picture.

To make my selection job a little easier this year, I finally took my wife’s advice and culled a few dozen of my slower selling images, which will give me some much, need display space I otherwise wouldn’t have had.

This strategy does two import things. One, it frees up space for better selling pieces and two, it lets these image take a break from the publics eye for a few years. Once I bring them back, they’ll seem fresh and new even though some of them might be over 10 years old.

So, it’s back to my framing studio to wrap up this batch of 8”x10” prints and get ready for Tuesdays batch of 11”x14” and 16”x20”.

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