Thursday, October 15, 2009

Success in a dubious market!

I'm very happy to report that of the 22 paintings (tiny to large) that I put in the September show in my small community art alliance show, eleven have sold... two after the show closed, but as a result of the show. In this crazy economic climate, I am very pleased. For all you artists out there, I will pass along the common denominator for most of the sales.... the clients already had an emotional attachment to the subject matter. What do I mean by that?
The premise for this show was thought up by me back in the spring and it goes like this...
The show would be based on images from my home county. I informed people that our local art alliance was presenting this show in Sept and that I would like for them to submit photographs for me to choose from to create paintings, but that they were under no obligation to buy the painting that might result. I also took my own photographs to work from that were of people, places, and things that I felt reflected our community. I'm not a 'buildings' painter, so they were mostly people and animals. Some identities I did not even know until after the paintings had been completed, but I felt that they had a strong enough character to stand on their own without identity. You can pretty much scroll down my postings and see what sold.
Know that I have spent a lot of time in the last 4 months volunteering at this art alliance. I have made many contacts that will result in paintings that could not be done in time for the show. The art alliance has voted to repeat the show next year with a photography show two months prior to encourage local people to participate.
I pass this info along because these ideas are a win-win for artists and clients alike. It's as close as you can get to a commission without having to paint something that doesn't interest you and the client makes no upfront commitment. Risky? Perhaps...but what painting isn't?! Next year, even more artists will participate and a wider diversity of paintings and subject matter will result.
I will probably continue this approach to people who I find interesting even without the "show" to back me up, as I have learned to get over my shyness about telling people that they are interesting to me. I leave it very open so that no one feels boxed in by the request.... me or them.


Diana Marshall said...

What a great idea, very clever and as you say a win - win situation.
Congrats on your sales.

Pat Burns said...

Thanks, Diana. I know it has been helpful to me to read how other artists approach an idea about a series of work or a marketing idea.

Deb said...

Hi Pat,
What a fabulous idea! It's such a great idea that I may approach our local Civic Center, which hosts many exhibits throughout the year, to see if they would like to do some version of this and host an exhibit from the art that results. Congratulations on sales, and for your very creative entrepreneurial skills!

Pat Burns said...

The more involved the better with this type of show.