Call for Artists, Making Money at Juried Art Fairs, Craft Shows and Festivals
Last September I got into St Louis and last week I was accepted to Cherry Creek for the first time since the first show where people were personally invited after the committee went around to a few shows and invited people. There are not that many really great shows and there are a lot more excellent artists than spaces for them. Except for a few artists, people get rejected more times than they get in. I am friends with most of the people who do the best shows. However, in every category, there is a competition among friends, among people I really like. I wish everyone good luck, but, the acceptance and rejection at the major shows effects our incomes. So, if I get in, one of my friends, or, maybe not my friend but I respect their work a lot, doesn't get in and doesn't get a great payday. I'm sure people I know are saying to themselves and sometimes to others "How did he(Barry) get into that show, his work sucks?" I doesn't bother me because sometimes I think my work does suck, that I don't push the limits far enough, that I am capable of truly great work but always fall short. Admittedly, I've done that with others. I get jealous sometimes of friends success. Later, I realize that I didn't really mean it. I just wanted to be in too.
How about you? How do you rectify the situation when your friends repeatedly get into events that you think you should be in too?
One of the jurors at Gasparilla a few years back is a member here. In fact, she was my Secret Santa.
I've got a lodging tip for you at Old Town ... not much can be down about the crowded city environment which makes it hard for the artists, but such a cool place to spend the weekend.
I know where you're heading with that lodging tip. I've not stayed there, but I sure investigated the place online. Really nice, fer sher. WOOHOO!
Well, folks I have about ten thousand arrows in my back from all the different reviews of shows I have done for 41 years.
I tell it like it is.
Personally, I don't think our reviews here on AFI help us or hinder us. I have written glowing reviews about Saint Louis,for example, but it did not get me in every year. In fact I have only been in five times out of 20 years applying.
Back to Barry's original question.
I feel that when I apply to show I am in a bubble. I am trying to get in. I give it my best shot. If I don't get in, well, I guess it was meant to be. I can't worry about anybody else. It is a biz folks, we are always competing against each other. That is how it is setup. You gotta be tough, you gotta be an optimist, you gotta be open to change, and most of all, you gotta accept the fact that you will not always get in--but, you will try,try, again.
Amen. I am gonna go drink some good red wine now.
And, Jeez, Connie, I did a NSB blog tonite too. That ought to count for something.
Also had three great birdies on the golf course today, shot an 84 on cold wind, life is good. Nels.
I try to remain nice (not always easy when you don't get in they do - however many times some of the accepted artists make me wonder!) and commiserate with them on whatever isn't going our way - weather, sales, customers, organisation, positioning. If I have a good show and they don't - well perhaps it was the opposite the year before and so on.
Annette. Been missing your smiling written voice--hope things are going well down there. Aloha, Nels.
G'day Nels! Yes, I'm constantly MIA ;) Miss the chat here though and your newsy posts so I have to drag myself back!!
"I doesn't bother me because sometimes I think my work does suck, that I don't push the limits far enough, that I am capable of truly great work but always fall short." This really resonated with me, I feel like this all the time. Sometimes it is hard not to be jealous of others, but I think sometimes it is that we lose sight of what really matters. Do you love what you do? Are you still physically able to do it? There is nothing really wrong with striving for greatness in your work it is what makes us better. I guess i just rectify it by saying to myself did i do the best i could with what i had to work with? If i did then great, if i feel like i could have done something better than I try harder next time. Comparing yourself to somebody elses success or work is pretty much useless, and it just makes you feel bad. That's my 2 cents.
To answer your original question, you can't feel bad about getting into a show and your friends didn't, unless you were a juror or bribed one. Jurors are just people with their opinion of what is good and bad, so you can't let it bother you one way or another. They might not like some slides or they have already seen 15 of work similar to what they are viewing. If you are doing it for the money, then you just have to rejoice that you or your friends get in.
I love it!! It happened to me yesterday. I ran into a friend of mine, yesterday, at a show and mentioned that I got into Cherry Creek. He had a surprised look on his face that he couldn't hide. He said "How could you get in and I never get in?" I could read his mind. He was thinking that my work wasn't good enough to do that show before he recovered from his thoughts. I just laughed and told him not to feel bad. I know I belong there. I didn't take it personally. Btw, his work? It's looks really impressive when you first see it. But, after being across from him for 3 or 4 days at a show, I get tired of it. It's a ceramic tradition to underwhelm at first and then have the piece grow the longer you have it. That is what I am trying to do with my work.
BB, you need some new friends. But I bet you already know not to go back to college with hopes of finding them there.
I apply to shows where I think i will make money. Sometimes i apply to shows where I think I might make money. Sometimes I get in. Sometimes I don't. The End.
I don't necessarily want to be there INSTEAD of my friends, but since shows can't include everyone, if there is one spot, I want it rather than you having it. If I don't, I shouldn't be doing this.
When my friends get in and I don't, I feel a flash of disappointment first, and would be lying if I said otherwise. I always come around to feeling happy for my friends, but that is rarely my first reaction. I want to be in the shows! I make our family's living doing this, and if I don't get in the shows, it's like leaving my store closed on a weekend.
When I'm at a show and my friends are selling and I am not, I hang around and see if I can understand what they're doing, and whether I can learn from it. Often when this happens, it's a price thing. They have $15 whatevers, or $50 prints, and I don't.
With prizes, I have to say, I am often flummoxed. Twice in the past couple years, artists in my general area who have won prizes have sold nothing, not one thing, until they received the award.
In 2013, my top-selling shows were Virginia Beach and Stockley Gardens, and in 2014, I was rejected from both. Huh?
I am a painter, and have a good friend who is a jeweler. We decided to do shows together this year, travel together, etc. We've both had a slew, a painful slew of rejections - but she has had twice as many as me. And that makes me feel really, really bad for her. And makes me glad I am not a jeweler!