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Archive for April, 2009

Generation Gap Kicked my b*tt

April 26th, 2009 at 08:05 am

Juxtapose a black covered table full of gemstone and pearl jewelry with a spray paint artist and synthesizer music ...

for 6 or more hours ...

Yesterday was the first day of a big art event in the downtown center where I live. I had planned to set up in the empty foyer of a store recently closed (who hosted me in the past), but the shop has been leased to a real estate biz starting April 1.

For fun (?) the owner decided to have a big art bash for the weekend. The picture windows were full of very urban style artwork, ie sharks, skulls, flames, slogans. Inside was loads of stuff on the walls, floors, demos, music.

There was a constant crowd of 20 and 30 somethings out front. Tattoos everywhere. Skinny pants, bohemian skirts, greased hair, fluffy hair, green hair, pink hair.

A slightly older guy did a (really good) spray paint portrait of Louis Armstrong in black and white out front. Of course, a kinda scary one where his face is all squeezed up like when he plays the trumpet.

It was ok, but for one yucky thing. I noticed alot of these people smoked.

Anyway, I set up on the sidewalks to the side instead.

Sales were good, but it was an unsettling experience. I guess art is supposed to do that to you.

And I will congratulate myself!! Met a goal of selling an item priced at $50 for the first time! This one is gone to a very nice older lady:

Pearl Mix Set

Countdown to 2-Day Sale

April 21st, 2009 at 06:42 am

Necklaces? Check
Earrings? Check
Cards? Check
Tablecloths? Check
Chairs? Check

...

This weekend is (maybe the last) big 2-day ArtWalk I am vending. Normally held twice a year, the city is unable to pitch in staff, marketing, and public services funds in the future. (Those trash cans, shuttle busses, and foot officers add up).

But I am throwing 110% effort into the gig. In fact, the retail store that hosted me in the past has closed but is allowing me to set up across their complete front window. This is a quadruple of the space I normally get!!

Foot traffic is major. Thousands of folks stroll around. More in good weather, more in good economic times.

New work to show:

Bead Embellished Embroidery Card


My kids usually stay at home with Dad the whole two days, but he is on a non-optional biz trip this year! So I have arranged for a neighbor's teen to 'hang out' with the kids all day Saturday. This allows them to play outside with friends as usual.

I didn't have to pay a fee to enter Artwalk (since my host closed), but now feel I have to make up the babysitter fee.

Keep fingers crossed for good weather and making up that fee!

Customer from Heaven

April 18th, 2009 at 02:03 pm

Ups and downs. The story of the week.

The Ups: Made shell earrings and necklaces from supplies at a local sea store and the employee at the time encouraged me to bring in a photo of the work for their bulletin board. I'm happy with the results (see below).





The Downs: Upon returning with a nicely designed half sheet flyer with the pics, my shop website and little tear-off coupons to post on their wall, the employee at THAT time said NO NO NO, they would not advertise for me.

The Ups: Got samples ready, especially, cards, to take to a shop who was relocating and wanted to start dealing more in small, inexpensive items. This is the shop who has 'hosted' me for artwalk for a couple years. They are closing their large, downtown location but letting me set up in front for artwalk anyway next weekend.

The Downs: The shop owner decided not to re-open after all. She is taking a break from retail for the unforeseen future and working in her husband's insurance business for awhile! No future orders for me I guess!

The Ups: After a sale to the camera store lady for an item on my website, she asked me to do 2 repairs for her. Done, and delivered, NO DOWN HERE! This is the customer from heaven Big Grin

The Ups: The art gallery shop committee meeting discussed 'featuring' active members (which I am one) and I'm scheduled for May! Doesn't really mean a huge amount. I get a little sign in the shop, a bio, and probably a set aside area devoted to all my things! Nothing in the way of media cause we just aren't that sophisticated yet! OK! I'll take it and maybe spread the word to media myself. NO DOWN HERE YET EITHER!

Basic Black Outside, Perfect Frugality Inside

April 13th, 2009 at 02:21 pm

Pinch me! Is it true you get what you pay for? Then how did this come about?

The free photo book that came with the new camera I bought a few weeks ago is done! It is a product book of my jewelry and craft work. Some of the photos are less than perfect, because there was not time to retake using the new better camera (and I am NOT a perfect photographer). Still I am very happy and know just which shop to take it to first!

COVER



Pages 1,2



Pages 3,4



Pages 5,6



Pages 7,8



Pages 9,10



Page 11



First three pages are about jewelry, then a page about journals, next couple about cards, and the last for bags.

Not to worry about a customer asking for an exact item! It worked out by describing the itemsa as 'Handmade Link Chains (example shown - blah blah blah)' and 'Needlework Cards - Bead, Lace, Special Trim'.

Sooooo, will it pay for itself? It already has! The lady at the photo store bought a necklace and wants me to lengthen another for her.

How do you say 'free lunch'?

I couldn't save them.

April 8th, 2009 at 10:33 am

A couple weeks ago I made a concerted effort to purchase a new digital camera in a locally owned shop.

Two days ago, upon contacting them for specifics on how to redeem some free print coupons, I found out they are closing at the end of the month.

Bleh. All the Ritz Camera stores in my area are closing. Something like only 6 will remain open in the CA/NV area.

The employees were surprised but still wonderfully courteous to me. The coupon for free prints was honored as will be a coupon for a Photo Album.

In fact, the free Photo Album is a deal! A 8 1/2 x 11 twelve page hardcover beauty. Snazzy layouts and great textural backgrounds included.

It will be a Pretty Cheap Jewelry Product book! Containing example designs and types of items. Like these:

NECKLACES






EARRINGS





BRACELETS






CARDS






JOURNALS




Concern #1: These are mostly 1-of-a-kind things. I have to include only those things I am able (or willing!) to reproduce. But a person seeing the catalog will not get a duplicate. Do you think that's ok?

Concern #2: Picture quality! These are taken with my old camera, and I do not have time to reshoot! The free deal must be redeemed very soon according to the staff because of the closing.

Any pictures you think are horrible?

'Lens' Crafter - Part 2

April 7th, 2009 at 11:39 am

My apologies to the optometrists.

Anyone a Flickr user here? Need help choosing good nature photo Flickr groups. Please leave a link in the comments. Thanks Big Grin

For shots like this:

DESERT DAISY


LOG COMPANY


HORTON'S HOUSE

UnReTouched

April 6th, 2009 at 10:27 am

Recipe for peace on Earth
(or at least peace of mind)
1 native plant seed
2 pelting rainstorms
dozen hot dry days

Mix Seed with small pinch or two of soil. Do not over mix. Add rainstorms at intervals with hot dry days. Leave to rise for a few months.

Serves plenty.





Taken Mar/Apr 2009 - California Poppy Reserve and Red Rock Canyon State Park.
Please do not copy photos without written permission of the Frugal Artisan.