finding the right venue for your art show
happy thursday friends! thanks for all of your support. my show last week went awesome!!! i had a lot more sales than i did last year at my first art hop. this year i changed shops and found that my work fit so much better with the store. and it made all of the difference in the world. my sales were multiplied and i connected with a ton of great people. i love that part. the connecting and telling my story with other people. really, the best ever!
i am still sort of recovering this week from everything that has been going on. my husband was out of town for a week and a half, being a single mom is so not fun. especially when you have a show to prepare for. it was really crazy and i am still recovering. now my oldest has a cold. so i am just lying low for a while to rest up. i am excited for the fall and opening my etsy store up again.
i had a friend ask me the other day if i could give her any advice on how to pick the right place to do an art show. and i thought that a lot of my readers would be interested in this same question, so i thought a blog post was in order.
the right fit. find a store where your artwork would sing. you want your pieces to match the store in taste and style. look around, are there other items that have the same subject matter, colors and spirit? then that might be a perfect starting point.
connection. what i think is the most important thing EVER is a strong connection to the store or gallery owner. you want the owner to sing your praises every time a customer comes in the door. if the store owner wants to purchase your pieces, that is a good sign.
target audience. you need to decide who your target audience is and find a store who has the same target audience as you. don’t be a afraid to get very specific. my audience is women who want to be inspired. women who have walked (or are walking) through some sort of trama. this is why the store a call to life was so appropriate for my work. the goal of the store is very similar to mine.
intuition. listen to your intuition. a lot of times if i didn’t feel quite right about a show, then it ended up being a flop. this is so HUGE. for my big show this month at a call to life everything just fell into place. i had two friends say that i needed to sell my art in her store. and when i met laura the store owner, we just clicked. the rest was actually really just easy. all of my paintings came naturally. it was just perfect.
wrong ones first. sometimes you have to go through a few wrong ones first and get a little experience under your belt before you find the right ones.
art shows that sell. find out how many pieces actually sell in an art show. i have been in several shows at a church and i don’t really think it is the right audience. i don’t think that many pieces sell in this venue. people who are going to church aren’t really thinking about buying art.
local art. find all of the stores in your area who sell local art. there are a lot that don’t, so that automatically rules them out.
art walks. find all of the art walks or art hops in your area. a lot of places do a once a month “art walk” where stores feature a different artist. go to a few to see which stores fit your work the best. then talk to the store owners to reserve your spot.
special note: you don’t want to have your artwork everywhere. most stores will not sell or have a show for an artist who is selling their work down the street. so be picky about who you approach because you might not be able to switch stores down the road.
take a risk. you will never know until you step out. so you might not have huge success but i bet you will learn a lot as you go.
cultivate an art community. so what if you live in an area that does not have a huge art community? start cultivating one. talk to local artists and have monthly meetings where you work together to build a community. talk to local shops about carrying local art. all you need to do is ask. start having art parties where people who have no experience with art can try their hand at painting. teach classes. farmers markets are also a great place to start selling your art.
online art show. if you still can’t find the perfect venue for your art show, do one online. put up a new piece every day for a month or so giving your blog readers a chance to purchase your art. you will have a larger audience for your work and you just never know who will buy them.