Let me start by saying that this has been a crazy couple of weeks at the Heinlein House. As some of you already know, I'm about to participate in my second Art Festival this weekend: Arts in the Heart of Augusta. I consider myself very, very fortunate to have the opportunity to participate in such an event as it requires lots time time, organization, planning, and manual labor. It truly takes a team of people to pull one off!
Here's a picture of my 'rookie' booth from last year. Awwww.
As you can see, I pretty much showed up and plopped my art down and around my rented tent. Yes, there are some easels and rugs/ furniture pieces from home, but the only art-hanging apparatus we made is the hinged trellis standing in the far left corner of this picture. Don't get me wrong- I consider my first art festival to be a successful one (thanks to all the help I had) but one could say it was a learning experience.
So having learned a thing or two from last year, I set forth planning this year's festival with the following goals:
Better pricing system
More product variety (prints, tote bags, clocks, ect)
Better system for hanging/displaying art
A professional-looking sign (last year's fail of a burlap banner was ant-sized)
More business cards
Labeled paper gift bags (oops, forgot about that last year!)
Naturally, I started preparing with MORE ART. My summer goal was to create as much as possible. I retreated into my studio every day and treated it like a work day. I felt especially inspired by birds this year, even more so than usual. As you can see, we got the jigsaw out and brought some fo these birds to life.
Some New Original Artwork:
New Available Products:
(View/Shop online Here.)
My Big Splurge: Buying Prints!
I decided to splurge a little (eek!) and order 50 professional giclee prints to stock up my Festival Booth. It felt really risky and scary at first because of the high up-front cost I had to pay. I order my prints through Picture Salon and am always impressed with the quality, colors, built in borders, and plastic sleeves. While someday it would be nice to invest in a professional printer, I'm very happy with Picture Salon for now.
After I went through and signed, labeled, and packaged all of my reproductions, my husband and I repurposed this old shutter from my favorite thrift store. My husband hot glued paperclips behind all of the shutters so that the prints could slide and secure into place (if you don't already know this, you will soon find out that he is SUCH a trooper.)
All I did was try to make the top of the shutter pretty. He wins. :)
Project Pegboard: Re-Thinking Display
One of our biggest goals this year was to have art hanging from the walls of the booth so that people could actually walk around without tripping over canvases. So Andy bought half-sheets of pegboard from Lowe's, wooden boards, and magically created these pegboard walls. Ok, so he used this link as inspiration.
Oh, in case you are wondering here all of this madness is occuring, we are in our garage. We decided to move our cars out of the garage so that we could put up our tent and mess around with different displays throughout this final week.
I got a one-on-one drilling lesson with Handy Andy and began hanging paintings/wooden sculptures all over the place!
Sorry for the graininess...it got dark and we don't have the best lighting in our garage! I will eventually hang up much more...but I want you to come and see it for yourself this weekend!
Above I mentioned my fail of a burlap banner from last year. (It may sound harsh, but why did I think it was a good idea to try to hand-paint each letter of my name onto a coarse burlap flag that stretched out into pixelated oblivion? Why?) In addition to my unreadable sign, I ran out of business cards early on and my signature on last year's artwork was hardly legible. My artwork had far more of a presence than I did and that's why I really want to look more organized and professional this year.
I started by becoming Queen of Labels and printed tons of little "about me" labels to put on the backs of all my artwork. These labels included links to my Etsy shop. Next, I printed tons of bigger labels to stick on the fronts of the paper bags I ordered. It's not in my nature to order boring brown paper bags and not spruce them up a little bit. Plus, I figured the gift bags could serve as walking advertisements throughout the festival. I ordered more business cards and printed out "about me" arist brochures for my booth.
Last but certainly not least, my husband helped me print this ginormous sign that I designed. It has a waterproof surface and we plan on hanging it within the tent. We also printed off a baby-version to stick outside on the front of the tent.
(I love this kid.)
I hope you enjoyed your sneak peek. Here are the dates/times for the event.
FESTIVAL DATES: SEPTEMBER 19-21
· Friday: 5-9 PM
· Saturday: 11AM-9 PM
· Sunday: 12-7 PM
I hope to see you this weekend!