Blog Post: The Other Art Fair
The dust is still settling after The Other Art Fair.
It was exciting, exhilarating and exhausting.
It was a bit like an episode of the Apprentice, with the need to create, install and sell a new body of artwork.
It was a bit like a fishing trip, with the excitement and angst of where to set your pitch, what bait to use, how to remain patient when you haven’t had a nibble in a while and then how to remain calm when there’s a fish on the line and you’re reeling it in.
It was also a bit like a two-person stage performance. Me and my work. Up there, doing our thing for 8 hours a day for 4 days. Draining, but necessarily so. How could it not have been?
So, what happened?
I met a set of artists that were as talented as they were supportive, whether that was a recommendation on a new framer, a fist-pump after a sale or tending my stand when I needed a wee!
I also met new customers. Some were parents or grandparents: buying my work to go in children’s bedrooms. Others were young couples: buying my work as a statement piece for their new homes or their first ever piece of art (which I suppose is a statement to themselves)
There were tricky moments: such as when I had to write an artist biography, when I realised I had ordered the wrong-sized frames for my prints and perhaps above all, the persistent sense that I could have my stool in a less awkward and obtrusive place.
But there were many more amazing moments: such as making a sale on the first night, having an art teacher refer to my work as “a young Rousseau” (I am a big admirer of his), feeling the ever-present support of my family and finally, selling my centrepiece, ‘Massive Jungle’, on the Sunday afternoon.
But there was one overall highlight that had nothing to do with sales.
It was on the Saturday. A young lad in a Tottenham shirt visited my stand. He loved tigers so he insisted that his mum buy him one of my prints. I was really chuffed and thought that was it. But they returned to my stand about 30 minutes later. He had plucked up the courage to ask if he could have his photo taken with me. Oof! It moved me a lot. I was so shocked, surprised and humbled that he wanted his photo with me. It was a lovely moment and really gave me a boost for the rest of the weekend.
I’ll wrap up by thanking everyone who supported me and sent me words of encouragement. I’m already planning when I’ll do another one, so watch this space!