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!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Window Dressing for the Studio Sale

Okay! Got the window decorated! This year's Art Show & Studio Sale is now irrevocable.

Click on images to enlarge them.

The Shakespeare Festival Great Hall front window is all properly decked out with tasteful hanging posters, illustration/book-cover/book displays for three of my books, and several other things that look very nice. The bird mobile hangs in the middle this year, instead of at the end. Much better!

I plan to go see it after dark, because the lights in the window make things look really different (prettier, actually).

I've posted your invitation to the show above. That's me standing in front of the decorated window.

Last year it took about four hours of putzing around in the window to figure everything out and get the display set up. This year it took a bit over an hour ~ a tribute to experience and preparation.

As for the Studio Sale itself, last year I learned a little bit about what people are (and are not) interested in, which means I'm not taking some things I took last year, and have added the folded ornaments and better signage on the tables. For example, here's a sign to suggest what a nice gift a book/illustration combination would make.

Last year some of my best sellers were workbooks from my sketching, journaling and watercolor pencil classes. So this year I will have a whole table devoted to them. Below is the sign that will go on that table. There are all kinds of other signs encouraging people to leaf through the books to find where the original illustration in their hands appeared, informing them about copyright laws so they won't buy a picture and believe they have bought the copyright to it as well, and many other things.

I design those signs in InDesign, my desktop publishing program, then glue the paper printout to a piece of same-size Fomecore, which is a very light-weight sheet of foam layered between paper. I tape a triangular Fomecore piece to the back to prop the sign upright ON the table.

Then, after everything is tweaked and in its place, I TAPE the signs TO the tables. In fact, anything that can fall over gets taped to the tables because last year we had unruly kids (and one unruly dog) running into tables and knocking things over. This year there will be a sign at the entrance asking people to please leave their dogs outside. Wish we could ask people to leave all Unruly Beings outside.

Artists have a great advantage in selling their work, as we can make good signs, exactly the way we want them, instead of having to rely on others to do it for us. I feel really fortunate that I have Photoshop and InDesign programs (by now OLD, but still very functional) to help me produce the art and desktop publishing. However, one could also do quite a bit of this in other programs, as well. Word will let you do some fancy word processing ~ and some programs in The Cloud provide free access for tweaking images ~ Picasa, for example, lets you tweak your photos/artwork to some extent for free.

As soon as I finish here, I will be getting out my lists from last year to help me get everything for the show/sale ready to go and packed into boxes. Then the boxes will go out into the staging area (my living room, alas) so I can keep everything together until it goes out the door on Friday morning. I think I'm pretty much ready except for this final gathering-together.

You can probably tell I'm organizing my thoughts here, so this is as much for my benefit as for you to read. It always amazes me to discover which of my detailed blogs elicit interest!

This may be my last blog before the show on Friday and Saturday. After that, I'll come back online with a blog about last-minute additions to my 22lb carry-on luggage for my sketching trip to Costa Rica and the Amazon, which begins on the 15th of December (yeah, that's right, just 3 days after the Show & Studio Sale!).

I've gotten some wonderful tips from my readers about things I should take on my expedition, which I'll share with you. I've also created a little something to deal with mosquitoes. I may not need it, but it weighs less than an ounce or two, and if I DO need it, I'll be SO happy I brought it (I'll show it to you when I post).

Mo' laytah, dear friends!

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