Market(ing) in Review

I have recovered from the production and market this past weekend, non of which ended too soon considering the current heat wave.  Saturday started getting hot, and my tent was on the shady side of the street most of the time.

I did as well I expected to. No more, no less.  Some people think doing craft fairs is glamorous, as they see the goods lovingly displayed, and me dressed up and on my best behavior (or not sometimes!).  What they don't see is the hours of work to prepare, pack, haul, set up, being "on" all day with a smile, no matter how sick you feel or what the weather brings, the tear down, then collapsing after it is all done.  And sometimes, it is only for a few dollars once you pay your expenses.

That being said, I enjoy doing occasional shows as it gets me out of my solitary life in the studio, I see my friends, and I enjoy the smiles, laughs, and the questions about my work.  Rarely does someone not like my work, save for the one time a woman walked by and commented "I don't get it".
I figured she was only operating on half of her cylinders, so I laughed it off.

This show I sold a nice amount of cards, and many of them were surprisingly to men!  I am used to my market being mainly women, (82% of my FB Catskillpaper Fan pages are women)  but my quirky (sometimes toilet humor)  humor,  and my landscape watercolor cards drew the men in. 

Being that it was a local market, the use of my watercolor landscape sketches mounted on cards proved to be a wise idea as most of them sold.  I don't feel that my watercolors are strong enough as "works of art" but they sure make a lovely card.  And, one that people might frame.  So next visit to Kentucky (a landscape I did there did sell too..) I have an envelope full of photos to do studies of. 

Today's art was made from altered postcards and magazine images. Wintergreen oil and sandpaper on the fish, and sandpaper, an antique image, and a color graphite pencil on the other.  It is a fun technique, and something that I can do with my students at school.  I will have to do a drive for postcards; in the meantime I will pick them up where ever I go.  The trick is, to make sure that you alter it enough so that the original image is not recognizable as one does not want to get into copyright violation issues.  But they make a fun and cheap collage/mixed media ground.  Thanks to artist and friend Loel Barr for her generosity in opening up her studio to me yesterday, and showing me these techniques! 

I have a free day and am meeting up with one of my old friends and bosses...whom I worked for 25 years ago, and am going to do some freelance for again.  I found her on someones page on Facebook and am so excited to be reunited.  Some may be very critical of Facebook, but I love it.

Patti O Painter

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