When I create a piece, I start out with an idea and then I let my supplies direct me, with the demo I needed to be more planned out but I didn't know how I was going to do that. I woke up that morning, yes I waited till the day of to get everything ready. With work, kids, camping and just my life in general I really didn't have much time to plan. I grabbed a cup of Joe and off to my studio I went. I spent oh, like two hours trying to figure out what I would bring. When I finally figured out what I HAD to bring with me I set it all up outside my studio door and called my husband Mike to load it up into the car for me. Oh, my sweet sweet Husband! He took one look at all I wanted to bring and I could tell he wanted to say that it was way too much but he just smiled and started to grab the stuff. I could see the look on his face and told him to be honest with me if it was too much, and in a ever so sweet voice (trying oh so hard not to freak me out, cause he knows that I was right on the edge of freaking!) he said, "yes, Honey it's a lot of stuff". So I took some stuff out reduced it to now 4 bags (ha) and off we went.
We arrived at the fair and it was jammed packed. I had no clue where to go so we ended up parking in the red parking lot and that one just happened to be very far away! I opened the trunk and decided that I still had way too much stuff and took what I thought I would need forsure this time and loaded up my husband and two boys with bags of supplies and off we went.
While we were waiting in line to get into the fair my 12 year old son Matthew (aka. Mr. Touchy Pants) decided that the latch on the container that was housing my stamps would be fun to lift up. When he flipped the latch up the lid came off and down went all my stamps and ink pads! The crowd went "ooooh, oh no" and Matthew hurried to pick them up saying sorry over and over! Luckily I love him.
We picked up the stamps and threw them back into the box and I gave it to Mike to carry. We made it to the exhibition hall without dropping anymore stuff. We had to wait to set up so Jo Jo another demonstrator could finish up. The boys were being so helpful so we decided to go get them a shaved ice. At this point my Inner Demon decided to speak up. She ranted about how this was a bad idea and what person that was coming to the fair would even care to look at my work let alone want to watch me make it! They want rides, food and fun! She wanted us to leave that instant but luckily my Inner Conscience piped up and told me how rude it would be to just leave and not work the time I said I would do. So guilt overrode fear and I headed back to set up.
I am so glad that my Inner Conscience piped up because it was such a pleasant experience! I settled in and got out some of my supplies and started working on a piece that I had started a couple of nights ago.
As I started to paint my girls people would walk by and smile at me, looking at my finished work on the table next to me and the piece I was working on. Then came along Mackenzie. She was a 9 year old girl holding a red blow up ball. Mackenzie and I painted and talked. We talked about her kitty, her family and art. I think it was a least an hour Mackenzie hung out with me easing my fears. (I really love painting with kids!) Mike and the boys went out to ride some rides and I continued to paint.
I had great feedback from the crowd. I even had someone ask if my steampunk butterfly was for sale. ( I have to get the Etsy shop up and running!)
I met a really sweet young poet. She loved my art and I look forward to reading hers some day. I hope she sends me a poem that she has written!
All in all my art and myself were very well received and there were way more people that came through the hall to look at all the great art than I thought there would be.
My Journey to the Artland, is moving again nice at a steady pace with enough detours and stops to allow me to learn and experience the fun of it all.
I was thinking after each journey post I will finish it off with lessons learned so that maybe if someone is reading my blog and is new to the art world like me they might read and get a little something that I learend and it might will help them with there experience of just starting out. Here are my lessons learned from the road to the fair.
- If doing a demo or traveling with art supplies have a idea of what you want to work on! Don't feel the need to take your whole studio with you even if it is sooooo tempting to do so. Your Husband might not want the workout lugging your stuff to and from your car! Thanks Honey!
- Invest in a wagon, or folding cart. Something to load up your stuff but compact enough to keep in your car.
- Even the smallest venue (Saturday Market, Fair, local art show etc.) can be such a great start to getting you and your art out in front of the world. It feels scary putting yourself out there but believe in yourself and what you do cause if you don't no one else will.
- Give yourself a goal even if it's just a little one. Each time you meet your goal it allows you to move a little further down the road.
- Most importantly tell that Inner Demon inside your head to SHUT UP! Be brave and head onto that rode with your eyes wide open. You can learn from every moment even the not so great ones.
Now I know what the animals at the fair feel like, I look like a caged animal! Ha
I made this for my dining room. I am doing a french country kind of style in there.
My Steampunk Butterfly was very popular with the fair crowd.
P.S. I forgot to mention that the art pieces I entered into the fair won two first place and one second! I I was very excited.