To join me on a virtual sketching trip, download a travel sketch-journal here.
I add tutorials to them so you can learn the techniques and details you see in the sketchbooks.

My former workshop students asked me to upload my workshop workbooks to make them available to everyone. So you can also download a workbook and give yourself a workshop! Enjoy!


Saturday, March 22, 2008

How I'm Promoting My July Costa Rica Workshop

The most labor intensive part of giving a workshop (and most mysterious, at least to me) is finding ways to let people know about it. The next one, Creative Journal Writing and Sketching Workshop,February 7-10, is my current focus. How can I get the word out?

I've listed the workshop in Shawguides, a workshop-listing website. There are a lot of great-looking workshops there, by the way, if you're interested. They hook to the presenter's website, so that brings in a few interested shoppers.

A classified ad I put in last September 2007 The Artist's Magazine for February's Journal/Sketching Workshop apparently had no results -- but it helped to establish my name in the workshop community so you might call it a "cost of doing business." And if it appears again and again, and people see it frequently it will help my workshops become familiar to them, which might give them cause to look more closely and perhaps decide to take the workshop in the future. I guess that's how it works {grin}.

That ad, by the way, garnered 91 lead responses (you know, "Check Box #133 on this postcard to get more information"), to each of whom I sent, snailmail, my business card and a flyer about the workshop. I'll send a new flyer to those same people again about this workshop, since they were interested in the last one. Let's see.....91 x .41 = $37.31. Not too bad for a highly targeted audience, I guess. It's identical to the .pdf you can download from the workshop site, but I get them printed up professionally so you can hold it in your hand and the colors look spiff, so it's a worthwhile thing to receive. Of course, getting color sheets printed isn't cheap, and it helps that my brother runs a print shop and gives me a break on the price! Still......

But I thought you might be interested in the progression of the ad, how it appeared last year and the steps it went through yesterday to arrive at what MIGHT be its final form. To be honest, it may be too short notice for this one to get into the magazine before it's too late to do any good. But even if it misses the slot for this workshop, it should work fine for the next workshop with a simple date change. Here's a thumbnail, and if you click on it you'll be able to examine not only the ad progression but read the analysis of the changes that happened.

I'm fortunate to have a friend with a good eye for design -- Cathy Egelston -- and I was sending her the various versions for her opinion ~ starting with the toucan version. What a steadfast critic she was! (Thanks, Cathy!) The version at the bottom is my/our latest one. I'd love to get your opinion on it -- or hear if you like the toucans better than the orchid. I wish it could be in color!

Also, I need to get out my workshop newsletter (complete with sketching tips -- figuring out my latest "tips" tends to slow that down). I have a pretty good-sized newsletter recipient list now, which indicates a solid interest group.

I've gotten a few more workshops scheduled now, too. My latest addition, a four-day journaling workshop for The National Historic Oregon Trail Interpretive Center, in Baker City, Oregon should be interesting, as they want a historic focus, as pioneers working on their journals while they traveled might have written and sketched what they saw. That workshop is a WIP "work in process," but I have plenty of time since it isn't scheduled until October.

The very next workshop, which I'll be presenting April 7-9, is for between twelve and twenty 11 to 13-year-old students at the John Muir Art & Science magnet school in Ashland, Oregon. The kids have been given the option of taking the workshop (or not), so I'm hoping the ones who do take it will be focused and interested-in-learning, art-and-writing-oriented students. I will definitely let you know how THAT one goes -- I haven't taught that age group in many years.

I'm still adding workshops, so keep an eye on my Upcoming Workshops page for new additions if you're interested.

3 comments:

Deb from Edmonton (Canada) said...

Hi Irene. This was very interesting - reading your progress through your advertisement. I definitely like your latest version best - it's very effective. I like the orchid showing on it's own best (instead of the wording over it) - it is beautiful and makes you want to go there and draw it yourself.

Personally I prefer title-case (or small-caps) over "all caps", but that's just a personal preference. But I love your ad and it would definitely attract me.

Thanks for sharing the process you went through with the ad.

Irene said...

Hi Deb,
It's good to get your take on it --like anything else, once I've worked on it all day I can't "see" it anymore!

However, by squinting, I could read the final one best of them all, and at my age sometimes that's all I manage to get without running for my specs!

monster paperbag said...

nice, cozy blog you got here :)..

Here's a grab-bag of other entries...

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