I had the pleasure of showing my work with Raw Nashville at The City Winery in Nashville on June 28th! Summer "16"!
Today I want to tell you guys my experience with Raw, the pros and cons, what I wish I had known, and what we all would like to know... Did you sell anything?
So lets get to it shall we?...
My Experience with Raw Nashville
Personally for me Raw was an amazing experience! We had a meet and greet one month prior to the show to go over details such as arrival times, performance times, what we were expected to bring, what was being provided, parking, ticket sales, and the venues rules.
The meet and greet was fun! I met some great artists we exchanged tips and tricks for creating and selling art! Some of us will actually be collaborating later this year!
The Raw staff was absolutely amazing with answering any questions and helping us set up our booths to help captivate the audience. I felt that everything was coordinated pretty well there were a few bumps but that is to be expected I won't deduct any points for it!
I definitely recommend Raw for emerging and seasoned artists! Its great for networking and meeting artists of different crafts as well as locating your clients, discovering who is interested in your work and why! I got to speak with a lot of people about my work regarding what they liked and how I could improve and that is always amazing!!! So overall my experience was amazing and I will definitely be showing with them again!
Pros and Cons
Pros would have to be the massive amount of exposure! So many people attended the event and they were actually interested in the art and willing to purchase and give feedback which was amazing!
Another Pro is connecting with other creative people who share the same interests as you do! That is always a plus and helps you build a creative community around you filled with people who support you and will critique your work honestly! I mean what more could an artsy girl ask for?
Cons??? There were a few and I mean very few!! So few I only have one which would be hanging space. I felt a little deceived regarding the hanging space and the walls we were given to hang the work on. We had a few incidents with the walls falling over prior to the show because we were sharing the walls. By sharing I mean we had wire wall racks and you had one side and another artist had the other. If the other artist happened to have work that was heavier than yours you ran the risk of having your display wall tumble down. Some artists got lucky and they were given spaces along the actual wall so they could create a small pop up like space! Which I loved by the way!!
What I Wish I Had Done-Notes for Future Shows
So these may be a given for you guys because some of you are pros but for me I'm still working on my career and I have only been full time since February and this was my first show so give me a break!!
Any who!! So my hubby and I took a little tour around the venue to see the other artists work and to network and socialize and of all that good stuff!! That's how I noticed these things and why I will never do another show without them!
Here's my list:
1. Contact List - Requesting names and emails for the clients visiting there booth! Why are contact lists great to have? You have direct information to reach clients who admire your work to market directly to those customers!
2. Social Media and Business Card Displayed- IN YOUR FACE!!!- Displaying social media information up close and personal for immediate access to your online profile in the event you are speaking to another client and the on lookers don't want to interrupt you! Also you get instant followers they follow you right then and there!!!
3. Prints and Smaller, Less Expensive Versions of Large Popular Pieces - Most artists had postcards, prints, and small canvas prints of there work on the table for purchase. I asked around and most of the items offered were super inexpensive starting as low as $10.00 and the prints were bagged with business cards and branded bags so the customer can find you easily should they want more work! And cheaper work that is also easy to purchase sales quicker than the large pieces no one wants to haul around all night!
4. Live Painting- Painting live is a great conversation starter! People are fascinated by the gift of creativity and they love to see you in the act! Also it helps pass time by! One of the artists actually set up her easel and paints to allow guests at her booth to paint on the painting! At the end of the night she had one beautiful abstract piece which she donated to Raw! Isn't that amazing?
5. Freebies- Small 4x5 art prints with candy or some cool trinket attached with a business card for the clients to take! Everyone visiting may not have come prepared to spend but having the option of free goody bags keeps me coming back and you have a refresher for them to keep your work fresh on their brain after the event is over! If you are giving a super cool crochet bracelet for free, every time you look at it you will remember where you got the bracelet and you will talk about it to friends and family when they ask! Am I right or am I right?
Girl Did you Sell Anything?...
YES!!! I did!! I sold lots of prints from my shop linked above and I received 12 portrait orders all who actually purchased them! AND I was commissioned to do two very huge and expensive abstract pieces for a local interior designer. I was also invited to show my work at 3 events planned for the fall and I could not be more excited!!
Raw Nashville opened doors for me and my small business! I am so grateful for the experience and I can't wait to show with them again in the future!
For all of my fellow artistic readers interested in showing I say do it! Go to www.rawartists.org and submit your work and check out shows in your surrounding areas! You may see me at one of them!!
I know this was a super long post but I love you guys and I wanted to share with you and give you tips!
Have an amazing Monday!!! And thanks for reading!!!