Art Fair Insiders

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

     In a distant earlier lifetime I worked for a newspaper with a large art department. Each year, human resources wonks conducted an employee attitude survey. Among the survey's sure things was that the artists would drag in with the absolute worst attitudes in the entire joint.  Not only did they finish last, they consistently came in last by astoundingly huge margins behind the department with the next-worst whine-quotent, the newsroom.

      Some of the give-and-take on this site remind how the newspaper artists easily became irritated and grouchy about most anything outside their personal cubicles.  The artists of that day, and now those of us today, surely are creative geniuses. But there's often a price to pay. The tradeoff is that many of us have problems with, as the human relations creatures might have said, intrapersonal relationships.

     We work way better by our lonesomes than as part of some team. Art, the polar opposite of math, has no right or wrong. So in our pristine artistic minds we always are right. It refreshes us to advise someone that he or she is flat dead wrong.

     All art debates such as those occasionally erupting like volcanoes on this site are made in total self-interest. But remember this: Nobody ever really wins an art debate. Ever.

     Self-interest means our arguments are based on what's best for the person doing the arguing. This may or may not be what is best for you and your art business.  But hardly any of us are much capable of anything other than tunnel vision. If you don't completely agree with the way I do it, I am compelled to inform you in the name of truth that you obviouly have been sadly misinformed.

     Sirited debate about the weighty issues of our business is entertaining, educational, enlightning and in some cases mind-boggling. Some of us, genetically incapable of refusing to acknowledge even the slightest posible crack in our argument, lash out against others like pit bulls in frenzy. Wouldn't be surprised to see some of our excellent contributors threaten to hold their breaths until (1) a shift in the other person's position or (2) death, whichever might come first.

     But either consequence would be to no avail. The other guy is never really gonna change, no matter how hard you try. You think furiously banging on your keyboard to launch a savage personal attack might win you some style points? Not going to happen. But it does make for fun reading.

     So have at it, boys and girls, and be thankful for forums like this, allowing you to advise the entire known world about how things ought to be according to the Ultimate Authority On All Art Matters. That of course would be you.

      I must go now. I feel a possible art argument coming on.

      As for you, stay far far away from employee attitude surveys.




Views: 131

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

Spelling corrections: Quotient is spelled quotient. Spirited is spelled spirited. There could be more.


Thanks, Steve. Many of us just back away when the tone turns vitriolic. I have a hard enough time staying upbeat, without reading the attacks, which make me feel depressed.  Best (and I’m guessing I speak for more than just myself) to  just stay out of it, and come back when the dust settles…or the poison dribbles away, more appropriately.
Well written, Steve!  Did you work for the Washington Post??? I was writing the employee comms there years ago and we ran Employee Attitude Surveys too (the PC Police would never let you call them that now, LOL!).  And as I recall the News Art dept. finished about as you describe in the rankings. 
Geoff: I worked at The Orlando Sentinel in Florida for 25 years. The Washington Post once offered to hire me but the job was to clean the bathrooms and pull weeds. Could've been a weed-pulling superstar, maybe.
Mr Vaughn, what I really hate about this post is the way it has been written, so coldly calculating, I can see you now sniggering behind the hibiscus, comforted in the fact that you have written a PC piece, overwrought with neutral hyperbole and brandishment for all.  This is such a sob blog.  There is nothing to ARGUE ABOUT in this luminous thread--you have seriously deprived us of our God-given rights, and I know I AM RIGHT--to take an issue with you.  You are a serious party-pooper and should be banned from all other threads.  May a thousand pufferfish descend on your pool and poop, bigtime, all over it.  You are the ultimate party pooper.  I really hate your cognizy.  Take that Webbie.  Nels was out drinking margaritas tonite so I kinda borrowed his computer.  No harm done.
It is just some form of PC-Pitbull bashing rethoric that is sometimes prostylized on this site as performance art--don't take him too seriously, his dogs don't

Youall should know that guy Cognizy mentioned by Nels was a famed third century French impressionist, even before France existed, who lived off meager earnings from selling his own work. He is also known for a brutal cat-fight with a financially endowed, elitist art showjudge at an event on the road to St. Tropez. According to art legend, the judge sneered at Cognizy's work and refused to enter the artist's simple, lean-to tent, driving the painter into an uncontrolled frenzy. "I did it for my fellow artists," he declared, bruised but proud. Cognizy...our hero. Thank-you Nels for reminding us of him.  


It does make for fun reading . . . and writing.





 "enlightening" is spelled with two Es. not one. Spelling mistakes like this happen as a result of extensive unprotected exposure to art show rejections. 






I just wrote" Am I an Artist" in the discussion forum, after reading steves Post I have no doubt anymore, I am an Artist
Yes, you are, but, can you write lyrical essays like our own little Steverino?
sure, if someone explains to me afterwards what I was trying to say


Fiber artists -- use this resource to find new buyers:  Advertise with Reach over 60,000 fiber arts lovers.

Our 50 Best Art Fairs

Look Inside the 2018 Art Fair Survey:
Who Won and Why

Join the MasterMinds Group for personalized coaching on your Internet Lifestyle Business! 

60 Page Report - Best US Art Fairs

Click Here to
Learn More


  • Add Photos
  • View All

© 2020   Created by Connie Mettler.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service