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Call for Artists, Making Money at Juried Art Fairs, Craft Shows and Festivals

Nels Johnson
  • Tampa, FL
  • United States
  • Photography
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Nels Johnson's Page

Nels Johnson's Blog

Artisphere, Greeneville SC--Small show with killer sales

Posted on May 16, 2017 at 3:00pm 8 Comments

I put this show among my top seven in the USA.

Only 130 booth spaces, with more than a thousand artists applying.

This was my third time in. It was also my best one there, although it started off scarey.



First, a little history.

In the eighties, when I started going away for five months to do shows in the Midwest, I always stopped in Greenvillle.

I had a solid glass artist buddy named Loren Marshall who lived there.

In those days I was lugging a 21-foot…

Continue

Ah ha! A Tequila Report for after Fort Worth

Posted on April 28, 2017 at 3:30pm 4 Comments

Ellen and I killed ourselves to get to FW in two days. So going home we said, let's do it in three days and enjoy ourselves.

Of course, that meant we would eat and drink reall well at

fun new places

So we left Monday and came east on I-20 to Shreveport and then headed south on I-49 to Lafayette, which is in the heart of Cajan country

So, about 40 miles south of Shreveport is a lovely town called Nachicthocies. The City of Lights. Definitely worth a stop

This charming… Continue

Main Street Fort Worth--Absolute killer show for most of us

Posted on April 27, 2017 at 8:00pm 15 Comments

Putting it succinctly, I made more sales at this show than all the previous eleven shows I have done since January.

In my 42 years of doing art shows this was the second best one, only the 1999 Kansas City Plaza was better.

I was not alone. I talked to four other artists who said this was their best show ever.

Almost two thousand artists apply for about 160 spots. Many are called, few are chosen.

My wife, Ellen Marshall, got in and was selected as the poster artist and tee… Continue

Tarpon Springs Art Festival--A lot of work for a little return

Posted on April 11, 2017 at 2:30pm 8 Comments

This is a very labor intensive show to do for setup and tear down. It is held on the grounds of a scenic park on a bayou in downtown Tarpon Springs. It is fenced off and they charge a $5 admission.



There are only three entrances to the show where vans can park and offload. Otherwise you are carting work from the van parked on the side streets, sometimes as far as two blocks away. It is one giant clusterfuck for the 200 artists there.



It might be worth it if you were…

Continue

Spring Arts Festival, Gainesville,FL--Weather was great but sales sucked royal canal water, but there is a great Tequila Report

Posted on April 6, 2017 at 2:30pm 9 Comments

This was last weekend.

I have always had an endearing relationship with this show. Back in the late 70's when I started doing shows--this was one of my first ones.

I lived in Gainesville and got to know many talented artists and crafters who were doing quite well on the circuit. They taught me a lot of the fundamentals on how to be a successful artist outdoors.

Most of those artists are long gone, you could say I am carrying on the tradition of them.

In the 80's-

90's… Continue

Melbourne Art Festival-New Howard Alan Show, last weekend.

Posted on March 27, 2017 at 4:30pm 9 Comments

This one was new first show for HAE in downtown Melbourne.

This is one month earlier than the long established festival which had been downtown for years which is now moving to a local park away from downtown.

HAE had 150 booths setup in quads down New Haven, the Main Street downtown.

Everybody had one great outside wall to display on. The other opposite side was not jammed up against your neighbor. You had room to store or hang there,nice.

There was room for rear storage if… Continue

Manatee Art Festival--Apollo Beach, Florida

Posted on March 16, 2017 at 12:30pm 4 Comments

First off. This show is not out in a dung-infested cow pasture--anymore. A few years back it was moved to a scenic county park right on Tampa Bay.

You can smell the salt air, feel the cooling bay breezes wafting thru your booth.

I have done this show off and on over the 25 years it has been held. It is only a thirty minute drive from my Ybor house.

On this date, everybody would love to be at Vero Beach art show. But alas, those old art ladies will not let all of us in, so other… Continue

Lake Mary-Heathrow Art Show--do not go near it

Posted on March 8, 2017 at 5:00pm 1 Comment

I have not done this show since 1993, it will be another 25 years before I would try it again.

On this date in Florida what are you going to do if you do not get in Gasparilla?

If you try Bonita, remember it is the last one of three, and usually the loser. Also remember Barry Witt sends out a mailing in January for all three shows. He does not send out anymore. I guess you hope they kept the postcard on a magnet on the refrigerator and will see it when they go for the frozen… Continue

Latest Activity

Nels Johnson commented on Nels Johnson's blog post Artisphere, Greeneville SC--Small show with killer sales
"Way to go Alison, I saw you in the lineup. It is a shame that the commercial barbecue guys got in, but, it seems they are regulars, in a number of years in a row, obviously have friends in high places."
May 18
Alison Thomas commented on Nels Johnson's blog post Artisphere, Greeneville SC--Small show with killer sales
"This was my second year at Artisphere and my first year I had much the same experience as Nels.  Friday was $600 and I was concerned and Saturday wasn’t much better but wow Sunday they bought.  Enough to make it my best show ever…"
May 18
Barry Bernstein commented on Nels Johnson's blog post Artisphere, Greeneville SC--Small show with killer sales
"I always blew off trying to get into Greenville because of all that driving. I mean, Florida, then Texas, and then back to South Carolina? I see it is worth it. If I work it right, I can rest and replenish from Artisphere to Des Moines. Btw, see you…"
May 18
Connie Mettler commented on Nels Johnson's blog post Artisphere, Greeneville SC--Small show with killer sales
"I suspected that. Aren't you glad to live in such a nice place as Ybor and then get out to see these other great places in our country? Wish I could deliver some good news for Florida, but no one is sending me anything new, except did you see…"
May 18
Nels Johnson commented on Nels Johnson's blog post Artisphere, Greeneville SC--Small show with killer sales
"I wrote it at lunch at Bernini's in Ybor, it was a one top shelf Margie and two red wine glasses blog. Sometimes I just get spacey in the writing, but. I try to give the reader a sense of what it is like. Btw, these last two shows( remember Ft.…"
May 18
Lawrence M. Sawyer commented on Nels Johnson's blog post Artisphere, Greeneville SC--Small show with killer sales
"Where's the "Like" button? Thanks for painting that picture. I shall add this one to the bucket list. "
May 18
Connie Mettler commented on Nels Johnson's blog post Artisphere, Greeneville SC--Small show with killer sales
"Phew! That was one mean stream of consciousness bit of writing, my boy! Hope you don't mind if I punctuated it ... of course, if you don't like it, go in there and take out all those spaces. It feels like I was there! Great descriptions,…"
May 17
Joan Glover commented on Nels Johnson's blog post Artisphere, Greeneville SC--Small show with killer sales
"I guess what really bugged me about this show is over 1,000 true artists applied and a bbq pit/small commercial company gets in? Don't get me wrong, these guys make cool fire pits, and are great for neighbors at shows, but.......guess I'm…"
May 17
Nels Johnson commented on Oscar Matos Linares's blog post How my approach change because of artist friends.
"Oscar. Always enjoy your posts in your broken English. This is not a dig. I figured out how you express yourself. Let us call it "Oscar-ease" It is a tremendous balancing act--doing art and trying to make a go at it. I emphasize with where…"
May 16
Nels Johnson posted a blog post

Artisphere, Greeneville SC--Small show with killer sales

I put this show among my top seven in the USA. Only 130 booth spaces, with more than a thousand artists applying. This was my third time in. It was also my best one there, although it started off scarey. First, a little history. In the eighties, when I started going away for five months to do shows in the Midwest, I always stopped in Greenvillle. I had a solid glass artist buddy named Loren Marshall who lived there. In those days I was lugging a 21-foot travel trailer behind me, my home and…See More
May 16
Roxy Lentz commented on Nels Johnson's blog post Main Street Fort Worth--Absolute killer show for most of us
"People have said I should do a show in Texas, I met some people from Ft Worth, and they said that, but I never know if people are just saying things. This is encouraging though, I am so sick to death of people saying they love my jewelry, but, alas,…"
May 3
Nels Johnson received a gift from Connie Mettler
May 2
Barry Bernstein commented on Nels Johnson's blog post Main Street Fort Worth--Absolute killer show for most of us
"I just walked in the door from my 2 shows, the amazing Main Street Ft Worth and the torturefest in Oklahoma City. This was my first Ft Worth and I hope I'm in for the next 5 years. It was my best show in 15 years. For many, it was their best…"
May 2
Cindy Welch commented on Nels Johnson's blog post Ah ha! A Tequila Report for after Fort Worth
"Nels, I am from Louisiana and live about an hour out of New Orleans.  We used to live in Natchitoches back in '89-90.  Quaint little town.  It is quite lovely and full of American and Louisiana history.  I appreciate your…"
May 1
Christina L. Towell commented on Nels Johnson's blog post Ah ha! A Tequila Report for after Fort Worth
"Love it!  What a mouth-watering journey home, Nels...so envious.  Thanks for transporting me to "foodie paradise"!  I, too, love Creole and Cajun cooking and have spent some time in New Orleans looking for the best food for…"
May 1
Nels Johnson commented on Nels Johnson's blog post Ah ha! A Tequila Report for after Fort Worth
"Thanks Barrie. Pre jeans has got quite pricey. Tell me a little more about Cameron, I am not familiar."
Apr 29
Barrie Lynn Bryant commented on Nels Johnson's blog post Ah ha! A Tequila Report for after Fort Worth
"Yer having some killer times, Moe Pho. We used to take just three days to get across Louisiana! Usually went to Prejean's in Lafayette. Went to plenty other places since we spent a lot of time there. Always along some back country bayou. Loved…"
Apr 29
Nels Johnson commented on Nels Johnson's blog post Main Street Fort Worth--Absolute killer show for most of us
"It is now posted, drink up"
Apr 28
Nels Johnson commented on Connie Mettler's blog post Call for Artists: 62nd Annual Park Forest Art Fair
"I did this show once, and they try real hard to make this a great show. The Saturday nite artist dinner is killer, overall, this is a very pleasant show to do."
Apr 28
Nels Johnson posted blog posts
Apr 28

Profile Information

Your Medium
Photography
Years in the Art Fair Business
36
First show ever
Waimea Falls Park, Oahu, Hawaii
What is your website?
http://nelsjohnsonphotographer.com
What are the best things about art fairs
the freedom to move around place to place and make money
Best show ever and why
Kansas City Plaza--they bought from me like there was no tomorrow
Worst show ever and why
One in Michigan(which will go unnamed) held in a muddy cow pasture, and it felt like only the cows were there.
Who referred you to ArtFairInsiders.com? Please be specific.
Munks

Comment Wall (101 comments)

At 3:33pm on February 10, 2009, Connie Mettler said…
Who made those socks, Nels? You knitting these days?
At 7:32pm on February 18, 2009, Carol Napoli said…
Thanks Nels, I saw it last night. Pretty nice. I am glad that you took the shot early in the show...Good article on the last weekends shows. Not so easy...makes for a longer ride home. Have a great next show.
At 7:47pm on February 24, 2009, Barry Bernstein said…
Hey Nels, I've known Pat Dragon for many years. I met him when he was living in Florida. He used to come by my studio a lot, but, I haven't seen much of him since Rhona moved up here.
At 12:37am on February 27, 2009, R. C. Fulwiler said…
Hey Nels; I love your story about your first art show; makes me think I'll write mine up too. Kim and I missed you again this year in Key West, but hope you did well in Naples. I did Coconut Grove the week before and had to be on the road for 10 days. I guess I'll see you tomorrow at Punta Gorda: Tell me why we're doing that one again?
At 7:39pm on March 3, 2009, Bill Sargent said…
Busted. I copy everything RC does.

Thanks for the note? How's it going? You don't have to say anything about last weekend.
At 9:48pm on March 16, 2009, Wadsworth~Noll Studio said…
Hey Nels! Thanks for the welcome. Guess I'm the probie of the group. :o) I could use all the guidance one could give. lol- just don't send me left when I should be going right.
You spoke of the Vero Beach show... what is your experience with that one?
Thanks again for the kind words.
At 4:46pm on April 7, 2009, YborArtStudio said…
Hello Nels, I signed up Saturday when I returned to the Studio from the meeting. What a great sight! I will have to spend some time setting up my home page.
Your Home, Gallery, and Work is quite wonderful! Thanks for having me. I will look forward to seeing you soon. Thanks for the invite.
At 12:19pm on May 7, 2009, R. C. Fulwiler said…
I took your challenge to heart and put up 20 more photos. Keep me posted and let me know how I'm doing!
At 9:15am on May 8, 2009, R. C. Fulwiler said…
They're mostly old ones. I didn't know "age" as a factor. I'll get right on it!
At 12:25pm on June 14, 2009, Connie Mettler said…
Loved your comment on DJ King Assassin's page!! What's happening here? LOL....probably the best page on the site.

Do you think we should have a competition for the best pages? Looking for nominations from you, as I believe you've been all over the site.

Thanks for your continued support!

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