Call for Artists, Making Money at Juried Art Fairs, Craft Shows and Festivals
This year was the 62nd annual Talbot St show and the 1st annual attendance for me. I sell functional fused glass pieces in the $35-50 range plus some decorative work that goes up to about $200.
Talbot St is on Talbott Street and a couple of side streets between 17th and 19th streets just north of downtown Indianapolis. Hours are Saturday 10-6 and Sunday 10-5. My impression was that the art and fine craft were of good quality with good displays and affordability, perhaps a level or two below the premium national shows with the highest-priced art.
Others have written about this show previously so you can find many details in past blogs. Here are my additional observations.....
Thunderstorms threatened much of the weekend, but didn't finally break loose until about 30 minutes into tear-down. I don't know if the forecast affected the crowd size or demographics. This year the first 3-4 hours on Saturday were packed with shoppers who were interested in the art and buying it. Then at about 1:30 the crowd shifted to youngish couples with kids and the mood shifted from art sales to free entertainment. Many artists I talked to had far fewer sales during the afternoon.
Sunday was similar. Fewer but motivated art lovers/buyers in the morning and early afternoon, then a mighty thin crowd for the rest of the day as the rain got closer. Lots of us made only half a dozen sales during those hours.
This show is run like a well-oiled machine. They get it, and on top of that the staff is friendly and helpful. Food trucks offer a tasty variety of food, and the nearby port-o-trailer provides air-conditioned, multi-stalled, gender-separated and well-kept facilities with toilets that flushed. Even the neighbors -- whose front yards and driveways we're blocking for the weekend -- are a delight. Mine offered the use of his shady front porch and bathroom for the weekend. A neighbor down the street threw a bloody mary breakfast for the artists near him. What a pleasure to have a genuinely nice, positive vibe swirling around the show all weekend.
It's worth repeating that the show is set up on residential streets that are old enough to be more narrow than today's streets. The houses have been nicely renovated and the trees are lovely. However to fit everyone in, the front 6' of your tent is in the street and the back 4' is up on either a grass curb or slanted driveway. It's doable, and just requires some additional time and patience during set-up to get everything squared up and level.
My revenue at less than 2K was disappointing, but I expect to try this show again because the ingredients seem to be there.