Art Fair Insiders

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

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  • Amy Furgiuele
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  • Connie
  • Connie Mettler


Profile Information

Your Medium
Years in the Art Fair Business
First show ever
Benefit for a home for unwed mothers - 1978. I made $28 and had to pay a 20% commission!
What is your website?
What are the best things about art fairs
Selling. Meeting/visiting other artists and seeing their artwork.
Best show ever and why
Cherry Creek Arts Festival (all 8 years that I got in): awesome sales!
Worst show ever and why
Oooohhh! So many! Any show - and there are quite a few of them - where I had to drive 2,000 miles round trip and didn't even make expenses.
Who referred you to Please be specific.
6 PM: vans not allowed on show site until that time, then artists had to also get in dinner line at 6 PM; then artists had to get in line to check in at 6:30 PM; then artists had to rush for their vans, rush to their booth location (unknown until 6:30), then set up. And there were 300 of us!!! I left the show when I discovered my booth location was on a side street: 0 sales! Gasparilla 2009.


Art on the Square, May 13-15, Belleville, IL

Posted on May 16, 2011 at 6:20pm 14 Comments

I just finished exhibiting at the Belleville, IL, Art on the Square.  Without a doubt, the artists' treatment, care, hospitality and wellbeing is paramount to the people who run this show.  I can't really remember when I've had so much attention paid to my needs!  From continual water, snacks, food, buffet meals, volunteer booth sitters, runners for cocoa - it just doesn't get much better than what Patty Gregory, the director and chief cheerleader, and her seemingly endless number of…


Why Can't Art Shows ID the Artists at Check-In?

Posted on May 9, 2011 at 8:23pm 10 Comments

In this time of fierce competition for getting into shows, whether ZAPP, JAS, Entry Thingy, what have you, I'm still amazed that so many shows don't require an artist to show a picture ID at check-in/registration!  I just did a small show in which there were a number of booths run by people who even said they weren't the juried in artist.  This show did not require ID during check-in. 

There are a lot of shows, some of which have been in business for decades, that either don't care if…


Which Images are the Most Important in Your Application?

Posted on February 7, 2011 at 6:32pm 13 Comments

Connie mentioned in her review of the Krasl jury that the first image is the most important when being viewed for jurying.  When I've attended a few jury previews for ZAPPlications (e.g. Ft. Worth Main St.), I and several other artists who were looking at the hundreds of applications seemed to feel that the last image was the most important.  That is, if the images were all in a single line.


But what about images that are on two lines, maybe with three on top and two + the…


San Diego Artwalk

Posted on January 21, 2010 at 10:05am 0 Comments

I tried to get this note posted months ago about the San Diego Artwalk, which takes place in late April. Yes, Connie is right about their publicity, etc., but there is a downside to this show. I talked to two of the directors at the Peoria NAIA conference last Sept. I had a lot of questions to ask about the show, because I wanted to apply to it; it's near where I grew up.

According to the directors, they get about 1,000 applicants for about 300 booth locations; previously accepted artists… Continue

Artwalk - San Diego (April and Sept. shows)

Posted on December 9, 2009 at 6:00pm 1 Comment

I had originally put this info on a previous post but it got kicked off.

I talked to the directors of the ArtWalk San Diego at the NAIA conference in Peoria last Sept. I was very interested in applying to the April show. The website shows a lot of pictures, but also raises several questions, to wit:

Q. How secure are your panels, since the show supplies the tents and the artists everything else?

A. You can strap your panels to the roof and also the legs, but bad weather… Continue

Comment Wall (10 comments)

At 10:41pm on January 06, 2010, Connie Mettler gave MICHAEL ALAN STIPEK a gift
Thanks for the excellent blog response today, Michael. Few others could have answered this question so well. I appreciate your participation on this site.
At 9:42am on November 21, 2010, mark oehler said…
Hi Mike,
re Irish music guy: I did a craft guild show in the basement of a community center in Little Rock a couple years ago. The guy across from us was supposedly selling his hand made hammer dulcimers, but what he was really selling were CDs of his playing christmas carols on the dulcimer. I haven't been the same since....
At 6:14pm on February 08, 2011, Connie Mettler gave MICHAEL ALAN STIPEK a gift
Many thanks for your down to earth, practical comments, Michael.
At 9:21pm on February 23, 2011, R. C. Fulwiler said…
Michael, I'm surprised to hear about your problem with the FL dept. of Rev.  I pay sales taxes in about a dozen states and I find all of them give adiquit time to file a return.  I live in Florida and all my due dates are the 20th. of the month following the month in question.  I live in Michigan for 5 months a year and have until February 28 to file with them.  Something is wrong if your due date is Jan, 1 for an anual FL sales Tax return for the previous year.  For one thing, you could still be doing a show over the New Year's Eve weekend, as I did in Naples this year.  And, I'm sure you know by now, that those $50 fines are easily redressed with a letter of explanation (no fun, I Know).  I used to be fined $50 a month by New York on a monthly basis because they wouln't send the forms to me.  I finally closed the account and if I want to go back there I'll open it again.  If I were you, I would close my FL sales tax liecense and then sign up again when you need it.  I think you'd be given the right amount time to file.
At 1:11pm on April 25, 2011, Connie Mettler gave MICHAEL ALAN STIPEK a gift
Thanks for all your thoughtful and helpful posts here. Hope to see you at a show this year.
At 11:42am on May 10, 2011, Amy Furgiuele said…
Hi, Michael!  I was looking through booth info from the Deerfield Festival of the Arts and noticed you were listed as well!  Hopefully our paths will cross during the weekend and if nothing else, I'd like to shake your hand for all your helpful advice!  See you in a few weeks!
At 2:22pm on May 18, 2011, Amy Furgiuele said…
Hi, Michael!  Quick question... I'm writing a blog article about crazy things said at art shows and I'd love to use your example of being asked if you had any photographs of Jesus... One of my favorites!  Let me know... I'd rather make sure sharing stories outside of the AFI forum is ok with you!  Thanks!
At 9:53am on May 19, 2011, Amy Furgiuele said…
Thanks, Mike!  I still chuckle when I think about it... Appreciate it!
At 9:42am on November 10, 2011, Connie Mettler gave MICHAEL ALAN STIPEK a gift
Happy birthday, Michael. I hope this will be a great year for you, full of fun and the best kind of surprises. Many thanks for all your contributions to our community.
At 11:41pm on July 28, 2014, Pauline Haas-Vaughn said…
Hi Micheal...wanted to thank you for the recommendation of the Mechanic Shoppe....they did right by us and got the truck fixed even though it turned out to be more complicated than expected. Made it up to Casper tonight and then onto Jackson Hole tomorrow :) Pauline and Brian

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