Thursday, 12 July 2007

Promotion promotion promotion

Discussing with a local pub landlord last night about my being part of a forth-coming art exhibition he wants to hold in his pub one day in August I realised that I'll actually be part of six exhibitions held locally during August. That's fine, I can fit them all in, and as they're spread over the month, I'm confident I can work out the logistics of shunting pictures around to each venue. But will it be worth it? Will it bring in any sales for me? Will it promote my artwork? Conjour up future commissions? I live in hope that it will. I have to. Its a lot of hard work though, setting up an exhibition. Hanging around to talk to people, to promote what I do. Or else I just drop off my pictures at a gallery, and someone else does the setting up, and I go home, and fervently wait, in hope, with fingers crossed. And when I return somebody might say - oh someone was in asking after you earlier, they hoped you'd be here. And you think, bugger, I've missed a sale through that. But if I went and sat, and sat..... and sat..... at a gallery (and I've done that, on many occasions!) no-one comes in, no-one is interested, until perhaps five minutes before the end of the exhibition, when someone will come in and for the next half hour they'll tell you ALL about their brothers neighbours cousin who is a brilliant artist - have you heard of them? (I never have, but I smile sweetly at them). And then you go home, without a sale. And then you'll talk to someone who's interested in art, and visits art galleries regularly, and they ask where you exhibit, and why haven't they seen your work before? And you wonder why they haven't either, when you do your best to push your art, and exhibit where and when you can, and they've never even heard of you! So what do I do wrong I ask myself? And the answer is probably - nothing. Its just the way it is, trying to sell art. You live in hope that you can paint a picture that someone will like, and want, and want to pay for, and have room on their wall to hang it on. That's why I'd rather do commissions, because then I know I'm painting something that someone actually wants. Exhibitions are basically just advertising the fact that I paint, and what I paint, and how I paint. If I make a sale, its a bonus. Its also good to see what other artists are doing, and meet them, have a chat and compare notes.

So I'm not expecting to sell many pictures in August....... but I live in hope!

9 comments:

Vi vi vi vooom!!!!!!!! said...

I know that feeling, I've done similar things at 'well being' nights, promoting yourself. You think 'Why the hell am I bothering?' but if you get one person interested, that's one person who wasn't before!

HonorAndDesire said...

Dearest Jackie,
You're a terrific artist! You create so much beauty and excitement for the whole world. There's so much to love!
You have such a healthy attitude about sales! It's a very good example for all of us artists, especially when we're struggling. But thanks especially for describing the fluctuating, complicated feelings inherent in marketing what you create and therefore ... well, essentially ... yourself!

Jackie Adshead said...

Vi - Glad its not just me who feels this way - and you're right about trying to catch the one person who might be interested, because it might lead on to other things.

Jackie Adshead said...

honoranddesire - thank you for your positive feelings about what I do and how I do it! I've had to develop a healthy attitude towards sales, otherwise it would be very easy to get despondent in the quiet times!

Cherrie said...

Jackie, I know of one sale you may complete!

Anyway, that's the nature of sales. You have to be prepared to try and try and try again, despite the disappointments of the past. And the person who goes on and on about some unrelated subject may just be working up the courage to inquire about one of your works. You never know!

Jackie Adshead said...

Cherrie - I'm hoping that I do complete the particular sale you refer to, since the image is very special to me, and to you!!!

I've had sales from some very strange sources, sometimes many months after a particular conversation, so I always presume that all conversations re my artwork might just lead to a sale at some time in the future.

Indigo said...

Yes in one way or another we've all been there, but you have to believe in yourself and you do don't you? Your art is fabulous, your ability to take a photo of some thing or some one and reproduce it in all its finery is everything, if you believe then it will happen, and I believe it will.

Jackie Adshead said...

Indigo - Yes I believe in myself, and know my art is good - its just getting the rest of the world to realise it! But....I know you like my artwork, and that's a good start!

Indigo said...

I don't just like your art work, I love your art work !!