Sunday, February 13, 2011

Selling: Getting Ready

Ok, I'm about two and a half weeks from heading out on my trip to the Scottsdale Arts Festival, then a new show in Winterpark, Florida. Mike will drive, I will fly! Family will hold the fort.

So, I feel great about all the work I have for both shows; lots of new pastels and oils. The studio is all a flurry in the process of framing some smaller works and taking larger pieces to my framer for fitting. I decided this time to have Todd at Framing Resource fit a bunch of work so I could keep painting oils until the last minute possible.  I took several pieces to Pixel Point Artistry to have shot for possible giclees later in the season. The oils are drying and getting black edging. I'm signing them, although I need to go to the art supply store to buy a smaller brush to sign the oils. I sign them in red with a mark that is not my legal signature, but looks better. It's more "designed". The pastels are getting their coat of spray; very light and at the end. I'm signing each of those with a sharp grey Carb Othello pastel pencil.

Lots of time is being spent on the computer getting all the work photographed and in inventory. I recently bought "eartist" which seems to be really great. It's a filemaker based program which I was already familiar with. Each piece will have a label on the back and a show label. We will have our computers with us and a printer in case we need to print more or make a change.

All the equipment needs organizing since this is the first set of booth shows for the season. This is a little frustrating since at the end of the season in September of 2010, we didn't do a good job of carefully organizing the gear. We just threw it in the garage and the Sprinter. I get why we did that, but regret it all the same! I have a comprehensive check list of all the equipment, from the booth and canopy, right down to the sunscreen and the Advil.

Next is making sure all the paperwork and tax forms are in place for both states that we'll be doing business in. Just like an athelete, we have to file sales tax forms in each state we do business. Scottsdale has both a city and state fee. Bummer. I don't so much mind the fee as the paperwork involved. Hard to keep track of it all.

Sending out an email notice to collectors and students is another item on the agenda. This is really important and almost takes precedence over a mailed card these days. We are working on an email that highlights a drawing to win a framed pastel later in the year. We're hoping contacts will encourage friends to sign up, to spread the word about my work.

Scottsdale 2010
Then we have to decide on a booth layout. Scottsdale is not too hard as we have the same great space as last year, but we do want to change it up a bit since I have a better variety of work. We actually have a foam core model of the booth panels that we set up. (Thanks to Mike). I wouldn't do this, but admit that it helps. We have Propanels which are light weight and easy to set up, but everyone has them, so our booth looks kind of like everybody's!! We do a few things to make it a little different.

Mike's Genius!!

All the work will be loaded into the Sprinter on the 6th of March. This is always fun if the weather cooperates. Not so much if it doesn't since the truck doesn't fit in the garage!! Most of the work will be loaded into the crates we have. Larger works will be slotted into a space behind the cab. Lots of consideration goes into the loading, so nothing gets damaged in transit from the movement of the truck. The pastels are especially tricky. The oils need a certain kind of care so the edges don't get scuffed.

Last years load in que! I have no house!
Last but not least are the wardrobe considerations. After all, this is the first show of the season, a warm
locale, a city with lots of great opportunity to dine and step out and I get to shed my painting cloths for a change. I'll need cloths for the set-up, cloths for selling and cloths for going out with Mike. I won't have time to shop, but I think I've got it handled already!! Most important are the shoes....and the boots.....Ha,ha!!

Not what I wear in the studio!!


Debora L. Stewart said...

Thanks for posting this. It looks like a lot of hard work and expensive. I'm not sure I could go through all of that. Your work is beautiful.

Marla Baggetta said...

Debora, your work is stunning! Yes, doing festivals is a ton of work, but it has been a good avenue to get exposure and sales. Mike and I have a wonderful time doing them, so as long as that's the case we'll continue to do a few each year.