Art Fair Insiders

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

Hello

I have applied to 3 juried art festivals.. All 3 I have checked them out the prior years to see how many vendors there were selling photographs and If mine were different enough to be part of the event..

I Purchased my Trimline TENT and all the goodies that go with it to make my booth somewhat appealing..

SO I have been turned down from all 3.. All 3 pretty much said the same thing,, To many vendors applied that are in my category and that jury was a hard decision,.. Thank YOU.

It seems this is a Blanket Saying.. I am thinking that it might have something to do with my display.. I been using Grids,, Out of all the juried higher end festivals I have checked out.. I cannot recall seeing anyone using Grids.. I see a lot of PRO PANELS being used..

I think my photographs are up to par.. I am wondering if its my set up? DO i need to purchase PRO PANELS? could this be it... My gut says yes... Just wish I knew so I can be part of sharing my passion with the public.

Please help guide me,, if there is something i need to do or not to do.. it would be great to know, So I don't have to wait to next year with the same rejection.

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Megan

Not that I need to do national shows... Its just the only ones I know of and have attended  as a tourist / traveler in Florida.

I only want to do Florida in the Winter..  I have my bases covered for the summer months..

With the time on my hands during the winter months from January to June. I can expand my reach, gain more followers and make some money during my off season. Like to get out and meet other vendors & make connections with the public..  These shows i speak of have great attendance & foot traffic..  Plus I learn what folks are seeking, whats working, geographically , along what the market price can bear in that region.

Plus as a destination wedding photographer, My experience has been that when they like my travel photography and the passion I share with them. When they find out I do weddings too It leads to so much other work.. Kinda each one feeds the other.. Circle of Life. 

Anyhow. I love what I do, and just want to share it! Like with Most anything at times, there can be a lot of smoke and mirrors.   I think man this artist must be crushing it.. their display and work is so awesome. But find out that its not true at all..  

which leads to another question I have that you mentioned..  Do they really meet their cost and then some?  

I never see folks carrying around sold items or large prints..  I have also seen the same artist and several shows that year..  Some in all 4 of the large ones I have been to as a spectator.. They all seem to have the same exact photo, hanging in the same location, etc.. Either they have boxes of prints stashed nearby, or they are taking orders. Or nothing is happening.  I don't see empty walls..

Do not want to stray to far from this thread..  Again thank you to those who have shared with me, and to those who chime in to share.  I am going to have time the next 3 weeks to set up my booth again. with the MESH panels..  Take the advice folks have shared so far.. It is getting late to apply for a few of the shows coming up,, have to wait to next year..  

  

 

When you sit at shows, you'll see big pieces walk by. Not a ton, but that's the thing with big pieces, it doesn't take many to make big sales. Also a lot of artists offer to deliver big pieces to the clients home.
But big wall pieces DO sell! I sold a record breaking 25 originals and almost 160 prints at the Columbus Arts Festival last year. My last show in Royal Oak I only sold 2 paintings and 2 prints. Definitely not an exact science.

If you are going to have a bin(s) at the show, you need to include at least one in the picture so the booth is representative of what you'll show up with.

Larry Berman

Larry,

Going to have to build something nice. & economical.. Unless they sell prefab somewhere I need to be informed of?

I was reacting to your initial post. Your second explanation of yourself gives a much better picture. Your head is in the right place.

I, for one, have always tried for the best shows in the country. That is where I want to be. They are the best run shows with potentially the best sales. I guess it's an ego thing. If you want to do the best shows in Florida, keep trying. Also, keep in mind that the Photography category has the most competition. You have to be good. Keep getting better. As far as getting in, I have gotten into the top shows and have gotten rejected from some of the lowest level shows. Go figure.

The reason why you may not see too many pieces go out the dooor is because people buy things, walk the show, and then on the way out, pick up their pieces. You won't see too many people carry their purchases around with them.

If you want to check out your competition in Florida, go to Coconut Grove, Gasparilla, and Winter Park. Those shows are where the bar is set. The problem is that hardly anyone at those shows will give you much information because 1)they are there to sell 2)they get inundated with people asking the questions you want to ask 3) the competition for those spots is fierce and you will be competing for their spot. The best thing to do is to look at what they are doing, not technique but quality. Look at their booth setup and how they display their photographs. You can learn a lot by observing.

Keep applying. One of the best shows in the country is the St Louis show. It was posted here once that if you apply 6 years in a row, you have a 66% chance of getting in at least once. The one time will be well worth it.

I don't think building better bins will do anything for you. I just said not to put them front and center. In your booth shot, they are the main focus of your booth. They interfere with the rest of your presentation.

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