When I last wrote, I was preparing for an Art Walk in my neighborhood.
I arrived earlier than most to get set up. I needed the extra time. I hadn’t done this before and I really didn’t have a great idea how I would set up my space.
As I bumbled around, hanging things this way then that, the real pros showed up and casually assembled their booths in about 15 minutes.
Ultimately I liked where I landed. I had my silks strung up like a backdrop (with no expectation of selling them), a small table with prints tagged and bagged, and then my latest series of “real” paintings hung on metal grid walls.
I enjoyed how the silks blew around in the breeze. That seems to be the best way to view them. When I sell one, I should include a fan.
If I were to do this again, I’d forgo the grid-walls and just set up folding tables. Tables have more than one use, and encourage people to step in closer and take a look. My booth’s arrangement felt a bit like a lair and I could sense some folks apprehension at crossing the threshold to talk to me.
I met a great Portland artist. He and his friend shared a booth directly behind me. Throughout the day we could lean back out of our booths and exchange a few words and lean back in to keep an eye on things.
Throughout the day I had a ton of great conversations. I shared painterly tips and tricks with some folks, simply talked about my art with others. A lot of friends and family stopped by to support me.
My amazing wife helped run the booth with me. She hyped me up to anyone who stopped by. As the 8 hour day ran on, we took turns running into the brew-pub across the courtyard to buy a beer in exchange for sitting in the air conditioning for a moment.
The day was exhausting but uplifting. I met people who connected with my art, I made a few sales, and I felt seen and supported by a slew of wonderful folks.
And an announcement…
One amazing result of “getting myself out there” was to make contact with Westward Gallery in Denver, CO. A local representative of the gallery happened to be at the art walk, and we got to talking.
After a quick Zoom meeting and a virtual tour of the gallery I signed a contract, packaged up my paintings and sent them off to Denver.
The gallery space is lovely, on a corner lot with lots of light and plenty of foot traffic. My work appeared in the gallery for the first Friday opening for August and I’m just thrilled.