Last Sunday I participated in the 53rd Annual Bergen County Art in the Park Show at Van Saun County Park. This is my third year in a row participating alongside my father and sister, and my best year yet! This year I had some great sales and took home an award! My piece Sea Creatures will be displayed in the Art in the Park Winner's Show at the Bergen County Administration building for the month of November.
Participating in this show every year has provided a sort of marker for me to review my work from the past year and see it altogether as a collection. It's a beautiful fall day outside with family and friends, and also provides a valuable opportunity to talk with fellow artists and meet your customer's face to face. For the most part when I make sales through my online shop I don't know my customer. This offers the ability to really observe in person who's attracted to your work and interact with your market. I got to speak with a little girl who purchased my Sea Creatures art print about how she wants to be an oceanographer when she grows up. It feels really good to know that piece is going to be hanging in her room providing her with the inspiration to dream.
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The first step is committing to the show. Get out there! The next is being prepared. Do a little more to prepare each year. It gets easier each time. This year I had a Paypal credit card swiper and wrote "credit cards accepted" on my pricing sign because I know I hardly use cash these days. I think clear pricing is the way to go, because most people feel funny asking in case it's out of their range. Put out business cards. I didn't realize until after the show but almost half my business cards we're picked up by passers by. Also, some people used it to look me up right there on the spot. Something else I tried this year, was newsletter sign up. I need to remember to ask those who bought to sign it though!
Looking forward to next year!