Art Festivals: a learning curve

On May 31, 2014 I participated in Arts on the Common in Wrentham, MA, hosted by the Wrentham Cultural Council. It was a first for me; setting up a borrowed canopy to display my pastel paintings outdoors was quite frankly a little scary.  The rain or shine event, turned out to be a cool, partly cloudy morning that gave way to sunny afternoon. Wind was not an issue, though it quite easily could have been. In retrospect, the day could have been a monumental challenge if certain unwelcomed weather related issues such as rain or wind were present.

The booth space that was assigned to me was on a bit of a hill, which had us seeking makeshift shims and wedges to make the display walls level (we used car window scrappers!).  We were not prepared for this unexpected situation, next time we will be.

There were about 30 other artist, displaying pottery, blown glass, jewelry, watercolors, photographs and fibre arts.  Most of them were certainly seasoned festival artists, having devised many nifty supports for their displays that made them fearless of any obstacle or weather threat. The speed with which they set up their intricate displays impressed me, along with the short time it took them to pack up at day’s end.

The glass artist in the neighboring booth spoke of a well known festival in Rhode Island which takes place on Columbus Day weekend.  He said one year they had to deal with SNOW for that weekend show. Now that is a one challenge which does not interest me what so ever.

Meeting festival goers was fun. Gaining new customers was great. Having people ask me about my art process was cool. Connecting with people I had not seen in years was also an added treat. The day was certainly worth the effort, but admittedly …. I could not have done without the help of my husband, and #1 supporter. Thanks! I am not sure if the art festival circuit is for me, but this experience was generally positive, so will keep an open mind.