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S Brian Berkun's Blog (91)

New Twist On Scams

I'm glad they've been working so hard to rid Africa of all those scammers, or is it just the same old scammers with a new scam? I'm so glad to be one of the lucky beneficiaries!

The last one I dealt with was audacious enough to have an email address of: (name not withheld so as not to protect the fool!)


This is to inform you that we…


Added by S Brian Berkun on May 23, 2016 at 1:11pm — 3 Comments

An Update on the New EMV Square Reader

I realize that a lot of you are in the queue to receive the new Square EMV enabled reader. There are actually two options; 1) For $49 you get the EMV enabled contactless + chip reader version, can be used with ApplePay, 2) For $29 just the EMV chip card reader and swipy version. You must read all the way down on the Square site to see the less expensive version. But I digress...

The update, got my first $29 version used it extensively at Rio Grande, worked fine (as long as I…


Added by S Brian Berkun on December 17, 2015 at 7:00pm — 57 Comments

Try This On For Size...I resemble that remark.

There has been much frustration expressed with the (almost) past year and the results of our labors. I just read this article about marketing oneself, it's not a DIY article but rather how to be kind to yourself as you figure it out. I find myself there often and am about to attempt to jump in again so the words of encouragement were well received!…


Added by S Brian Berkun on October 19, 2015 at 12:38pm — 4 Comments

Got Square?

Received my new Square swiper and thought I'd inform folks about it. In case you've been under a rock for a while credit cards with the EMV embedded chip require a new swiper for which Square will charge you $29. Not too bad considering all the free ones they gave to us.

The new swiper has two slots and is quite a bit fatter. The top slot accepts the EMV embedded cards while the bottom slot is for traditional swiping. Just plug the card into the top slot and don't remove it till the…


Added by S Brian Berkun on October 9, 2015 at 11:30am — 18 Comments

Affordable Arts Festival Denver, does it again!

Feel free to search the main site for "Affordable Arts" reviews from the past. I wont retread what's already been said.

Reflections on this years show: The "promoters" job, after we've paid what continues to be exorbitant and rising booth and jury fees is to do just that, promote the show and get buyers there (by the way this is NOT one of those overpriced shows). Okay, enough editorializing.

Maybe it is the nature of this particular beast ($100 or less) but Jim Delutes…


Added by S Brian Berkun on August 31, 2015 at 1:03pm — 23 Comments

Buy Bye Bayou

I know this is coming late but, better late then never! I've done the downtown Bayou show several times, with essentially rain conditions on all occasions thus having the effect of cutting down on the crowds and subsequently the sales. Many booths were located in the "swamps" were nary a fair goer would go. I've been fortunate enough not to be located there. That being said, I thought I'd give the spring Memorial Park show a try. I haven't been invited pre-150 additions to the show but did…


Added by S Brian Berkun on May 8, 2015 at 2:30pm — 2 Comments

Finished by Cottonwood, Another One Bites the Dust!

Now that Cottonwood is done and on the books and I'm semi-recumbant I'll put in the details.

This was not a first time show for me as I've done it a few times now and generally, it's been trending upwards. So, it was with some thoughts of hope and trying I returned to the DFW metroplex and after all Nels had such a glowing report about FW last week I was…


Added by S Brian Berkun on May 8, 2015 at 11:43am — 6 Comments

Saludos desde Las Cruces

This was a first time show for me as it was suggested by an artist friend. I thought I'd try it out as the drive was only a day away and nothing else was scheduled during that interval. So, first the facts:

Show Hours and Dates: Las Cruces Arts Fair, Las Cruces, NM. March 13 - 15. 5-8 Fri, 10-5 Sat & Sun


The show is set up inside the the Las Cruces Convention Center which is not far off of the I-10 corridor and many…


Added by S Brian Berkun on April 4, 2015 at 6:59pm — 3 Comments

The Way It Were...

It is not so often that we can report on a show doing the right thing, or the generous thing, for an artist so I felt it was incumbent upon me to report such a deed done well.

Last year I reported on my inability to attend a show (Grand Junction Art and Jazz) due to the death of my spouse's father on the weekend. I had emailed them to that effect and later followed up with a request for a possible booth fee refund due to the circumstances. The show's coordinator said she was unable to…


Added by S Brian Berkun on March 11, 2015 at 3:33pm — 6 Comments

Not So Carefree in Carefree, AZ

To see a more thorough report on this show visit my last report:

What's new in 2015? Not much. The crowd seems to be getting older still and buying even less as their "snowbird" homes are all full. This show, as-well-as most of the AZ shows I've done so far, is suffering from its own…


Added by S Brian Berkun on February 11, 2015 at 3:00pm — 3 Comments

Too Bad for Tubac, AZ

This is the second time I've participated in this show in the lovely town of Tubac, AZ and probably the last. The first time I did this show was in 2012 and the weather was average for this time of the year (60's). This time the weather was above average in the 70's and 80's and, as it had rained for three days the weekend before it would seem the perfect time to come out and enjoy the sun. 

Sales for this artist, as-well-as others that were queried, were down from the last show. I…


Added by S Brian Berkun on February 11, 2015 at 2:30pm — 5 Comments

Another one bites the dust...Do'in Tempe Festival of the Arts Fall 2014

2014 is almost done and so am I (both figuratively and literally). I started this write-up just sit'n in my room after a nice dinner at the Big Fat Greek Restaurant on Mill Ave. in Tempe, AZ waiting for sleep to grab me.

For a more thorough review of this show see my previous posts. And…


Added by S Brian Berkun on December 12, 2014 at 3:32pm — 3 Comments

More on Booth Shots and Juries

Just read this article on Art Biz Coach which is the website of Alyson Stanfield regarding her experience at the Portland Arts Festival Conference sponsored by Zapp. I am posting it with her permission.

The full text of her article can be seen at:…


Added by S Brian Berkun on September 1, 2014 at 11:00am — 6 Comments

ProPanels...Cable Hanger or Hanger Kit...That is the Question!

I've just switched over from mesh panels to ProPanels after many satisfied years of the former. I wanted to be able to do indoor shows without having to use my tent frame, or any frame for that matter. It looked cheesy and I wanted a more professional look, but I digress.

What I would like to know from a users perspective is what works. What do I mean by what works? Well I bought cable hangers for the pro panels and found that they tend to slip and slide towards the middle with 2D… Continue

Added by S Brian Berkun on July 27, 2014 at 7:30pm — 8 Comments

To go or not to go or...Life is what happens when your making other plans.

I was on my way back home and had been mentally preparing to go to my next show in Grand Junction, CO after having survived the long week in Oklahoma City at the end of April. My wife informed me over the phone that her father had taken a turn for the worse.

Let me back up a bit. Five years ago my wife had resigned her position as an administrative assistant in the police department, after much decision making anguish, to return to New Mexico to take care of her mother whose…


Added by S Brian Berkun on July 23, 2014 at 1:44pm — 13 Comments

A Bolder Boulder Arts Festival

Years ago I had done shows hosted by Downtown Boulder, Inc. on the Pearl Street pedestrian mall but gave them up due to the fact that they were underwhelming. The last time I did one was 7 years ago. In the interim, 4 years ago, the OpenArts people decided to expand on their mission and held a show that no one attended. It was held in a nice open area adjacent to a shopping mall in Boulder but apparently the word didn't get out.

OpenArts is known, at least in part, for hosting the…


Added by S Brian Berkun on July 23, 2014 at 1:34pm — 14 Comments

Gambling on Estes Park, CO

If they had a casino up here I might have had a better return but as it was an art show my odds of success dropped exponentially! My spouse likes to go to casinos to gamble, not much, maybe $20 or so on nickel slots. I used to tell her to give me the $20 and we'd both be ahead, she'd have the satisfaction of losing the $20 and I'd have the money to take her to dinner. Then I got the joke, maybe I should have given her the booth fee!

Having just finished the Art Market show in Estes…


Added by S Brian Berkun on May 28, 2014 at 12:30pm — 9 Comments

Oakey Dokey in OK City

Okay, I'm conscious again and finished getting ready for the next go round so I figured I'd get this posted before it was time to hit the road again.This was a first time show for me, thought I'd do something different and besides which, it was a good excuse to do the Route 66 road trip through Oklahoma again. Last time I did that was 20 years ago, my how things have changed, I'm glad I did the road trip first, read on!

Some might say (Nels?) this is a grueling show to do as it is 6…


Added by S Brian Berkun on May 4, 2014 at 7:30pm — 8 Comments

My two cents worth on The Woodlands Waterway show

Okay y'all beat me to the review so I'll just add my two cents worth...kudos to the hard workers and those that are in charge, they absolutely put on a first rate show! More water and snacks then I could shake an artists name tag at. They made a big point of telling the artists how much they appreciated them being there, over and over again!

It never fails, not matter where you are located in a show you always think some other part of the show is getting more patrons then you...not… Continue

Added by S Brian Berkun on April 19, 2014 at 8:00pm — 5 Comments

Tempe's in the bag

I read Nels' earlier report on Florida and I can only say, " I feel the pain".

Tempe, AZ has never been a great show for me but, at least up until last fall, it was an okay show. Like Nels alluded to, this show also was off about 50 % last fall and this last spring show was off another 50% so it wasn't a great time. Others around me felt like they did "okay" but nobody was do'in the hokey pokey!

The crowd was there with lemonade and popcorn in hand along with lawn… Continue

Added by S Brian Berkun on April 19, 2014 at 7:00pm — No Comments

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