Art Fair Insiders

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

Let's weigh in as to the Pros and Cons / differences between indoor and outdoor FINE ART Shows.


A) Not wholesale shows

B) FINE ART not craft. No criticism of craft, just trying to narrow the focus.

C) Let's avoid the obvious such as weather dependent. I believe we all understand that.

D) With your input, please state your medium (it makes a difference)

I would like to limit the discussion to keep within the listed criteria.

If questionable, please list if a pro or a con

Let’s start it off…

INDOOR more expensive booth space

sometimes wont allow battery driven power supplies, charging higher fees for electricity.

more difficult to access vehicle for back stock

might be more noisy

less peaceful environment

less chance of public driving by- seeing booths and then stopping to inspect

often less extra booth space (empty areas nearby to store / sit etc.)

controlled lighting conditions

better overnight security

level ground

hard surface to stand on all day

Easier booth assembly (not access, just parts needed to build)

load in / out often more difficult

unlikely to have artists trying to drive in early to breakdown during show

often times gated entry fee

OUTDOOR uneven ground

more dirt / dust

might not have access to power

softer ground for all day standing

visibility to unintended patrons via driving / walking by

might have pets soiling the area

less expensive booth space

blinding sun

wider traffic flow aisles

often less other distractions ie live music, dance etc.

easier booth setup as far as movement around booth

more complex booth assembly in parts needed

weights or ground staking needed

may be larger – could be pro or con

might be hilly for patron movement / access, might not be ADA friendly

Add your ideas / opinions...


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I guess no one has opinions to share on this?

Larry, I have not yet responded because indent do fine art.  I do furniture art and home decor art, along with buying/selling vintage.  The shows I do are more like vintage shows.  I do believe there is some cross over between what you listed for fine art shows and craft/vintage shows.  I consider many of the same factors as yiu, but directed at what i sell.

Agreed. Some things are cross linked. Some things can be different depending on type of show and level. Example, some very fine work with getting creative, modifying and repurposing furniture, might work at a flea market type indoor venue. However the same venue might not work for some fine art paintings.

Indoor bathrooms vs portapotties(usually) are always a treat

Excellent. I forgot that one. Ahhh, nothing like the comfort of a real toilet seat :-) Also nice running water, for wash up.

 I didn't see your discussion as sometimes I have trouble finding posts after they get buried from my sight with the buying/selling of displays posts.

My husband feels cramped when we do an indoor show because of the 10 x 10 walls. I realized it is because we don't put up any walls with our outdoor setup. We sometimes do a show or two indoors that doesn't require booth walls and that seems to go much better.

I have pottery and have high shelving in my booth.

Larry, let me perfectly clear.  I do NOT do flea markets.  That is not where my customers shop for finished products like what I sell.  Vintage shows I do include Vintage Market Days.  If anyone is interested go to their website at

In fact, I go to flea markets to find products to flip.

Cindy, I did not mean to infer your work is only flea market quality. I was not insinuating your's is not very high end. Please don't take what I wrote as demeaning at all. I would not do that to you.  What I was trying to point to, was the idea for example. A Beautifully redone and modified with interesting was of paint and refinishing or repurposing used door, might sell at a high end flea market or craft show, but would not sell at a high end Fine Art show. Whereas a high end Fine art photograph, which might sell at a Fine Art show, will not sell at a high end Flea market or craft show. It is not a matter of which took greater talent, skill or effort. It is a matter of types of groupings, categories and perception from much of the public. Neither is "better" than the other. However they are generally accepted differently by different possible buyers. I'm sorry if I offended you. It was not my intent. I definitely dd not mean to offend your chosen form of art. Hugs :-) BTW, I sometimes go to flea markets for my art... Yup, I do some "street photography" shooting the characters / people i see there :-) (they shoot me too :-)

Larry, thanks for the clarification.  And yes, I agree.


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