Open Studios_ Feed

Tips for Your Essential Studio Shots

Every artist and maker needs to update their profile shots and studio images once in a while.
HarrieteWriterPENCIL72
Usually once a year, I dedicate the better part of a day to new studio shots and it is time to do this again.  I need to be ready in advance for a request for a studio shot.

Who will take the photos? Ask a friend that likes to take photos. Ask an art student that wants to practice with their camera or build their portfolio. Maybe you will meet someone that wants to trade for your artwork. Ask your son or daughter. 

Here are a few tips.

  • Always wear extra make-up, it never shows in the photo.
  • Never wear a black shirt. If you do the artist always ends up looking like a floating head in the photo.
  • Connect with the camera. Project positive feelings and energy. (I know that sounds silly but it works.)
  • Chin down just a little.
  • Take photos on a good day....a "bad day" always shows in your face.
  • Plan on using the time of day with the best light in your studio.
  • Make sure you have extra white foam core to bounce light.
  • Take serious working shots and experiments.
  • Take images of your studio with and without the artist.
  • Publish only the best photos, and not all at once.
  • Take process shots during every major artwork. Book authors and blog writers love to include the in progress shots and the finished artwork.

Harriete Estel Berman working in the studio on a Tu Bishvat Seder Plate in her studio

Here is a great tutorial that might help improve your lighting.

This tutorial shows how to use Photoshop for a more flattering image. "Smooth Operator: Make More Flattering Portraits"

STAY TUNED
I'll be on Jay Whaley blog talk radio with Andy Cooperman and Brigitte Martin on Thursday, 3:00 PST (6:00 East Coast). We will be talking about the upcoming Professional Development Seminar topic titled: Cash Cow, Sacred Cow, Purple Cow with lots of inspiring ideas for artists and makers. This program will take place during the upcoming SNAG Conference and is inspired by the Seth Godin Lecture How to Get Your Ideas to Spread.


Have you scene my studio online. And some people wonder where I get all my tin cans....just junk places, and resale shops. Some games (like the one below) are really great gifts but must be terrible games because I see them all the time.
Have you scene the studio of Harriete Estel Berman


OPEN STUDIOS: Artist Checklist

IMG_4265During the holiday season many artists and makers open their studios to the public seeking holiday sales. That also means reasonably preparing ourselves for safety and security.  That is why the PROFESSIONAL GUIDELINES
has a document
OPEN STUDIOS: Artist Checklist
.


Open studio events raise concerns that are only important when the public enters your studio.

Do you have business insurance? Home owners insurance will NOT cover a business loss or liability issues if a person falls or is hurt in your studio.

Is your studio handicap accessible? Legally this is not important but potential embarrassment for all parties and a distraction. Make sure your invitation spells it out.

Is your work priced at full retail? Don't under cut the stores or galleries that sell you work at full retail.  If you do....they will not be happy, damaging your working relationship with your gallery or store arrangements.

Here are a few other thoughts:

  • Plan for parking.
  • Directions to your studio - signage.
  • Safety of your guests -- unplug power tools, remove chemicals, rope off unsafe areas. Have a plan if your guests bring children or animals.
  • Keep your money and phone on your person at all times. 
  • Have a 2nd person around if you are alone.

   

StudioBENCHES.100
Studio space for Harriete Estel Berman. My studio is open for tours and by appointment. Contact me by email any time. Work is always on display in my home and in progress in the studio.

HarrietecuTINS.100Open Studio events are also an opportunity to gain exposure and to show your community what you do and make. We can educate the how and why we create what we do. We can answer technical questions and address issues of price and materials. We can even dispel a few myths and misconceptions. And, of course, we can open the door to new markets.

Visit my studio online.

LINE of Irons s;ymbolic of the hallmark maker's mark of Harriete Estel Bermankr

SHEARS hanging in the studio of Harriete Estel Berman
Visit my studio with your art group anytime by appointment.

Harriete



My Seasonal Stress Disorder: DISCOUNTS

DollargrEarly December, we are mid-stream in the holiday shopping frenzy including open studios and holiday craft shows. This could be the right time to bring up the important topic of discounts.

I strongly disagree with the premise of discounts for one of a kind art or craft. Every holiday season, I whither like a dried up fall leaf as I watch the art and craft world try to compete in a shop till you drop world of consumer discounts.

Ten years ago I wrote a document about DISCOUNTS for the PROFESSIONAL GUIDELINES. The opinions in this document were reviewed,  evaluated, supported, and edited by Bruce Metcalf, Board Liaison and Contributing Editor; Suzanne Baizerman, curator; Tami Dean, production artist; Marilyn da Silva, artist; Lloyd Herman, curator; Cherry LeBrun, owner of DeNovo Gallery; Marc David Paisin, Attorney at Law; Dana Singer, Executive Director of SNAG; Lynda Watson, metalsmith; and  Caroll Webb production artist.  

HotbuttonRecently an article was brought to my attention titled,
Discussion: Are Promotional Sales Appropriate in the Art World?  This article chooses to focus on very important points regarding the issue. It is well worth time to read the article. Jason Horejs actually combines several points under three headers.*

Here are the
Disadvantages of Discounts

               from the
PROFESSIONAL GUIDELINES

Discounts can create disadvantages to both the artist and the gallery. 

A) Discounts create uncertainty about the VALUE of the artwork.  Discounting gives the message that the work was perhaps not worth its initial price, and may diminish what customers are willing to pay.  Thus, in the long run, discounting can erode value. By not discounting, a consistent value is maintained for the work.

B) Discounts create uncertainty about the stated PRICE of artwork.  If it is widely known that a gallery will negotiate prices, buyers will regard the posted retail price as a fiction, and will expect a discounted price as a starting point for negotiation.

C) Discounting creates the impression that art should be bargained for, like items in a flea market.  Many craftspeople find this highly undignified.

D) If an artist’s work is discounted in one gallery and not another, and buyers become aware of it, sales at the gallery that refuses to give discounts may be discouraged.

E) Discounts can encourage price competition between galleries, which is not in the best interest of either artists or galleries.

F) Giving discounts selectively may imply that some collectors are more important than others.  Many collectors know one another, whether or not they live in the same area.  If some customers receive discounts and others do not, word may get around and cause ill feelings.

G) When buyers negotiate for discounts, the discount becomes the object of discussion instead of the artwork itself.

H) Once a customer receives a discount from a gallery, he or she will expect a discount on all future purchases from that gallery.

BermanMezuzahAndThePasswordLEM
Password Mezuzah © 2012
Recycled post consumer tin cans
Artist: Harriete Estel Berman

In our society, price establishes worth and value.  For better or worse, the common denominator in the marketplace is the dollar, and worth is measured by what is paid.  It is the job of both the artist and the gallery to establish the value of the artist’s work (by virtue of its uniqueness, craftsmanship, reputation and quality), and remind people that this worth is reflected in its price.

Berman Mezuzah Yellow Flower  from recycled tin cansScrollLEM
Yellow Flower Scroll Mezuzah © 2012
Recycled post consumer tin cans
Artist: Harriete Estel Berman

 

 

The actual selling price confirms the value.  If the selling price is negotiable, then the value is questionable as well.  And then the discounted price is the true value, not the retail price.  As a result, it’s in every artist’s interest to maintain close control over the selling prices of his or her work.

More insights and remedies can be gained by reading both the article listed above by Jason Horejs AND the DISCOUNTS document from the PROFESSIONAL GUIDELINES.

Be aware of the impact of discounts on your work.  Approach the holiday season and the whole year with a firm understanding about the financial and reputation impact of discounts.  
Harriete
*Read the comments (and clarification) below offered by Fiona Purdy.

Reality bite, you are the best spokesperson for your work.

Exhibition in the Gallery at the Society of Arts and Crafts, Boston, MABostonSOCIETY
Three Bracelets by Harriete E Berman
Post consumer recycled tin cans
Society of Arts and Crafts    2007

In the previous post on ASK Harriete a student asked, "What is the first step to get my artworks shown in a gallery?"

My guess is that the real sentiment was "How can I get my work in a gallery so that the gallery will sell my work, and I can just focus on making and not selling?"

Harriete flattening tin cans working in the studioTINS.100Many makers hold on to the fantasy that a gallery will sell all their work so they can dedicate their time to making work.  The reality is that those days are gone forever (except for a few rare individuals).  There are various reasons, including the Internet and this tough economy.  But it is incredibly important to realize early in your career that you are the best seller of your work. 

Just as movie studios came to realize that actors should participate in the marketing of their movies, and publishers understand that authors should appear on television and radio to sell their books, artists need to participate in the marketing of their work. The visible and articulate artist/craftsperson is the most effective tool there is for marketing.

Alyson Stanfield and Harriete Estel Berman at the Loveland Museum
Harriete E Berman & Alyson Stanfield
at the Loveland Museum exhibition 2010

People (i.e. buyers, collectors, and viewers ) want to see, hear and meet the artists. Whether it is meeting at an opening, participating in social networks, offering to do interviews, writing about your own work on blogs, or standing in your booth at a show, the creative spirit is what people want to see and hear.  They want to learn your story.

Showing your work, telling a story, or explaining the meaning behind your work are steps you need to take to achieve success. No gallery can perform this job better than you can.

A gallery that sells your work is a partnership. They may be providing a retail location with a customer base, but the better you are at your job, the better they can sell your work.
Harriete


Is Your Studio Interesting?

Have you considered creating interest in your artwork by making your studio interesting?

Drillsabstract72 Your studio can be a "magnet" for extra publicity. The creative space of the artist, crafts person, writer or musician has mythical interest to the lay person. They want to see where the magic happens. It is a very popular myth that being a creative person in any media is "fun" and inspiring.  They want to share in the joy of creativity. 

Your creative studio space can promote your work in a whole new light.  Highlight the persona of the artist. The fact that you make your work by hand, from concept to the finished product distinguishes your work from the mass produced items at the mall.

Fix up your studio. This doesn't mean make it entirely neat, tidy and perfect. I mean give it  "character" and the personality of the artist. Make your studio look like no other place on earth. Display your sources of inspiration; share images from your sketch book or the objects that inspire new ideas and forms. If you have no wall space, hang inspirations from the ceiling, decorate your tables and chairs (even if you found them on the street for free).  Embellish, paint, create.  Make your creative space reflect and express your aesthetic and the artist's voice.

Whenever I am feeling uninspired about my artwork, I take a break and put some time into enhancing my studio space, just adding a little more here or there.  Sometimes it is my "warm-up" to get me working in the studio on more important pieces....and believe me, my studio can be cold since there is no heat.

My recent additions to the studio over the last two years include:

SHELVES2Buying junky games for a few cents at yard sales and resale
shops and using the box for storage. It looks a lot more interesting than plain brown cardboard, don't you think?

LINE of Irons72 My iron collection is always on display. A domestic iron is my hallmark, my maker's mark, so this is a fitting symbol in my studio.  I never pay much, usually only a few dollars at most.To see a larger picture of my iron collection visit my studio on my web site. 

ViseTABLEbetter I have decorated some of the tables in my studio with tin cans. Since tin cans are my raw material this is a natural choice for me. Choose the colors, patterns, media, or materials to decorate your studio that reflect your personal aesthetic. If you work with paper, cover your tables with paper; if you paint, why not paint the tables and chairs?  

There is a recent article in Metalsmith Magazine about my studio. If you don't subscribe to Metalsmith Magazine find a copy at a bookstore, your local library (ask them to buy a subscription), or purchase it online. Though this article is about visiting the studio of artist Harriete Estel Berman, the lesson is to think about how you can make your own space interesting and marketable.

After that, think about what publications might be interested in an article about your studio. There are tons of possibilities from your local newspapers to the newspapers near a store that sells your work. Don't think about just magazines like Metalsmith, that's just one idea.  Think about all the publications that are possibly suitable for the content or images in your work.

Next step, prepare a package of images to send to the magazine or newspaper or blog that fits your work. Write a unique angle about your "creative spaces" or your chosen media. Send the same packet to the gallery or store that sells your work. They can send this information to their local newspaper to boost sales and visibility for your work and the gallery or store.

Artists and craftspeople need to approach developing opportunities for their work as creatively as they think about the objects, paintings, and sculptures they produce. 

Learn to use the creativity of the artist in many ways.

Harriete Estel Berman 


Open Studio-Questions about security, prices and new customers

Dear Harriete:

I am planning to participate in "Open Studios" next week. I am worried about security, studio pricing (discount or no), and whether this is the best way to bring in new customers. What do you advise?

Open Sesame

 Dear Open Sesame,

 There are lots of Open Studio events during the holidays. PatternsCLOSE This can be an excellent way for you to meet the public, educate your visitors about materials and processes, and hopefully sell you work.

 The Professional Guidelines has an Artist Checklist to help you make your Open Studio a successful event. This is available for free in both Word and as a PDF . 

 You’re right to think about security before your Open Studio. Your personal safety, the safety of your visitors, and the safe keeping of tools and materials are all important considerations. Start early to plan for these contingencies.

 If your Open Studio is advertised and “open to the public”, plan to have at least one other person with you at all times. If necessary, hire an assistant or ask a friend to keep an eye out whenever you are engaged with visitors. (If you can’t afford to pay your assistant, consider offering credit towards a purchase based on an hourly rate.) If the studio is in or near your home, there should be an additional person inside your living space at all times for security. 

 Money and checks should be carried by one person at all times; never store your money, checks or credit card receipts in a box that you put down or hide (someone may be watching.) It is best if your assistant is responsible for all sales so that you can be the artist  talking about your work. The assistant should wear a name tag that says "sales" under her name and it familiar with your pricing, payment plans,  and discount policy (in case someone asks.)            

 Store all valuable materials, highly desirable items and small tools out of sight. Don’t leave anything out that might get picked up.SHEARS4.72

 Clearly mark areas that are off limits to visitors with ropes or obvious signs. Unplug all power tools so that they can not be turned on by accident. People may not be familiar with tools and touch a button, step on a floor pedal rheostat or rotate a lever without realizing they are starting a motor. Chemicals should be stored out of sight in sealed containers.

 Have you considered what happens if young children come to your studio? Frequently, I have been asked if school groups or girl scouts can visit my studio space. My rule is that children must be 12 years or older for public groups.  Younger children can be decided on a case by case basis, but you never know what will happen if your studio is open to the public. Be prepared and post an appropriate sign if you are concerned to limit your liability.

 Is your studio handicap accessible? If yes, or no indicate this on your announcement? Steps, narrow doorways, or uneven pavement may present difficulties to your visitors, but the impact on your Open Studio may be disastrous. When you are trying to make your Open Studio a financial and professional success, spending a strenuous half hour sweating out whether a visitor can navigate your steps is not a wise use of your time.

Uneven pavement or unexpected steps should be marked with signs on the walls and highly visible tape on the floor. Low ceilings or low thresholds should also be indicated with signs, tape, and maybe even foam on the edge.

 Do you have business insurance to cover your liability TIS01 if someone is injured at your studio? Scary thought, but your homeowners insurance does not cover business related activities.

Studio prices should be the same as retail prices at the galleries or stores that show your work. An open studio represents a significant investment in retailing. In addition, in is unwise to under-price the retail locations that exhibit your work.  Sell the unique features of your work, not the price. Can you offer another incentive for purchase that supports your retail prices? (Read the discounts document in the Professional Guidelines for more information.) 

Decide your Return Policy in advance and post your Return Policy in a visible location in the Studio. (If you do not post your Return Policy it will be assumed that you have no restrictions on a return which is probably not the case.) Your Return Policy should be at the location where you are most likely to make a transaction such as your sales counter, cash register or packing area. It would be a good idea to post an additional sign in another visible location. In addition, informing customers in advance might make them more comfortable knowing your Return Policy before they decide to purchase an item.

Prepare your invoices in advance with your Return Policy on the invoice. This can either be on the invoice in your computer, (ready to fill out with the customers name and the items purchased) or have a pre-printed invoice ready. Print, stamp or use a sticker label  of your Return Policy on the preprinted Invoice book or sales receipt. 

You asked “whether this is the best way to bring in new customers. What do you advise?” Really, this depends on your objectives and how muchPeppermint CANDYfront.72 you will spend on the Open Studio. Keep in mind you need to consider your time invested in the Open Studio event instead of making new work. Would your time be more productive at a retail show or  on making new work for your gallery? Generally, an Open Studio event during the holidays is more successful if you have seasonal themes and items suitable as gifts in a modest price range.

 How are you going to find “new customers”? I do not recommend paying for a mailing list of names and addresses, and prefer the idea of targeting a select group of people interested in artist made or hand crafted work. An ad in the newspaper to the general public can be scary, possibly inappropriate! Can you share an Open Studio with other artists where you can pool your mailing lists? Start small with your friends and building a network each year. Good luck.

Harriete

bermaid@harriete-estel-berman.info

 


What is a "Return Policy"?

Dear ASK Harriete,
What your return policy was and how you came to it?
Signed,
Concerned about Returns. 

Dear Concerned about Returns,

The subject of a Return Policies is a great question and a huge topic. To break this down into manageable portions, I am going to make several entries in this blog on the topic over the next few days. There are many situations in which an artist may need a Return Policy including  retail purchase,  online retail selling,  open studio situations,  craft shows and for whole sale accounts. Flexible Return Policies by large stores have led the consumers to assume that all retailers are equally flexible but for the small retailer, such as an artist, offering complete credit for Returns can be problematic.Lifesavers72_2

Personally, I never even thought about the concept of Return Policies until relatively recently since I only sold work through galleries.  In those situations, the Return Policy is determined by the gallery and represents the relationship the gallery has with the client.  It is rarely an issue discussed between the artist and the gallery.

With my recent adventures into retail selling on a number of online sites such as Etsy and Object Fetish jewelry (opening May 2008),  I started thinking about Return Policies, too. Almondkisses72_3

Your first consideration should be to look at your state law about Return Policies. Thank goodness for the internet. Tonight I just typed in  - Return Policy in the California -  and the results for this search were easily found. Here is the link in case you live in California.

http://www.dca.ca.gov/publications/legal_guides/s-6.shtml

I have included some of this information below. Look on line for the law on Return Policies in whatever state or country you live in. The most important premise of a Return Policy is that it is clear and available to the consumer at (or before) the point of purchase.  You can have ANY Return Policy you want as long as the customer know what your Return Policy  is before they buy.

The most challenging issue about developing your own Return Policy is developing a policy that is considered reasonable by the client, encourages purchases, and is relatively easy for the artist to implement.

In future blogs, I am going to cover additional information about Return Policies including:

  • Examples of Return Polices
  • Return polices at Open Studios
  • Return policies at wholesale/retail craft show.
  • Return policy for wholesale accounts.


DISPLAY OF RETURN POLICY BY RETAIL SELLERS in California

(A SUMMARY IS BELOW.)  GO TO http://www.dca.ca.gov/publications/legal_guides/s-6.shtml
FOR A MORE COMPLETE EXPLANATION.

Most retail sellers allow a customer to return purchased merchandise within a reasonable time for full refund or credit, or for equal exchange. In fact, these refund policies are so common that customers have come to expect them when retail sellers do not post notice to the contrary.

However, some retail sellers impose conditions on accepting returned merchandise or do not accept returns at all. The California law requires retail sellers to post their refund policy, if the policy does not meet certain common expectations. These common expectations are:

  • The retail seller gives a full cash or credit refund, and equal exchange, or some combination of these, and
  • The customer may return the merchandise for at least seven days following purchase, if it is returned with proof of purchase.

When Return Policy Must Be Displayed

If a retail seller has a return policy which does not meet these common expectations, the seller must conspicuously display its refund policy as described in the next section. This conspicuous display requirement applies to any retail seller which sells goods to the public in this state whose return policy as to any of those goods does not meet these common expectations.





Moving into a New Studio Space

Dear Harriete,

I am a mixed media mandala artist. For the past two years I have been working out of my kitchen, and am now moving into my very first studio space.  It's an exciting time, but also a daunting task.  Do you have any suggestions that might make for a smooth(er) transition?   Psanky_pankyweb_4 Is there a studio checklist perhaps for things I will need, but haven't thought of yet?   Storage ideas?  Easy ways to hang framed pieces that won't mean putting a lot of unnecessary holes in the walls?  This will primarily be a work space for me, but I do expect to be doing some retail sales, also.

Thanks!
Stacy Wills
A Magic Mom & Her Mandalas
www.amagicmomandhermandalas.com

Dear Stacy,
Moving in an official studio space sounds like a big step, the important thing it to make sure it inspires new work. It is good to hear that your thinking about how to display your work for an Open Studio event early on in this process.

FIND INEXPENSIVE STORAGE My first thought is storage. Every media needs storage for materials, supplies and finished work.Closed storage (cabinets) will look a lot neater than open storage(shelves) and keep the items in the cabinets clean. Look online on Craig’s list for “FREE” old kitchen cupboards or furniture or go to recycling centers or business to find the least expensive storage cabinets possible. IF you cover the eclectic mix of furniture  with a uniform color of paint it will look pretty neat and tidy.

STORING PAINTS AND CHEMICALS If you have any chemicals, solvents, flammable liquids or paints put them in a cupboard that is appropriately labeled on the outside of the cupboard with the appropriate signs (i.e. flammable, acids, chemical, etc.) These signs are available at the hardware store.  Acids should be stored separately from cyanide based liquids. Read the cautionary labels on the products for appropriate storage.

HANGING WORK For hanging work, older homes used to have a piece of molding attached to the wall 6" – 12” down from the ceiling. It was a great idea for hanging pictures without damaging the walls.  This would be a perfect solution. “Picture rail molding is still commercially available and is Road_to_morroccoweb_2 sometimes specified for new homes as well. Picture rail hooks are S-shaped steel hooks that fit tightly against the profile of the wood picture rail. Pictures are hung from picture rail molding by running Picture Wire down from the picture rail hooks (usually two per picture)” Information is from Picture Rails.    Picture rail molding  with suitable hooks may be available at your local hardware store, if you prefer.

CONSIDER MAKING LABELS FOR YOUR WORK As you hang your finished paintings, consider making labels just like those at the galleries and museums. One label for each painting. Labels should include: NAME of the Artist, DATE (year) of the work, MATERIALS (keep this short) and the RETAIL PRICE.  This can be formatted on your computer, printed on the printer and attached Sunburstweb_4 to foam core with rubber cement. Cut into rectangular shapes with a VERY sharp matte knife.  Attach to the wall with the gummy adhesive used for hanging posters without nails. Consider including  a short paragraph or artist's statement about the work prepared in exactly the same manner. This should be done perfectly, just like in museums and galleries to look professional.

PROTECT YOUR TOOLS Consider keeping the more valuable or expensive tools and paints in a cupboard so that they can be easily put away any time your studio is open to the public.
Another practical consideration is that when you studio was at home, you were probably sharing the hammer, screw drivers, pliers, etc,  that you used for home repairs with your tools demands in the studios. Now you will need to have your own tools for the studio. As you transition to your new studio space, keep a running list of tools you use in the studio and borrowed from home.  Buy a separate set of tools  for  the studio as your budget allows.

When your ready to host your first Open Studio, don't forget to download the document  Open Studio: Artist Checklist in the Professional Guidelines.

GOOD LUCK with your new studio,
Harriete
www.harriete-estel-berman.info
www.askharriete.typepad.com


Open Studios: An opportunity to practice speaking about your work.

Recently, I participated in a teleseminar with Alyson Stanfield from artbizcoach.com about hosting an Open Studio event.  An Open Studio event provides an opportunity for artists and craftspeople to reach a broad audience, to educate their community and ultimately to develop new markets. During these events, the general public is invited to view the artists’ studios, to experience this creative environment and, hopefully, to make a purchase directly from the artist.

What distinguishes an Open Studio event from a Studio Visit or museum sponsored tour is the intended audience. Whether organized under the auspices of a community arts group or by independent artists, an Open Studio event welcomes the general public rather than a specific group. Some of those who attend an Open Studio Event may never venture into an art or craft gallery or attend a museum exhibition opening. It is this egalitarian distinction that makes an Open Studio event a vibrant addition to the community.

At a Open Studio the artist is speaking to the public about their work. This may be the first time you have had an opportunity to verbalize about your current work, the concepts  behind the artist's inspiration or the processes involved. A major benefit to the Open Studio is that you get a chance to practice verbalizing  ideas that up until this point  you may never had to say out loud before. As each new group of people comes to your studio during the day, practice and refine your "speech."

An Open Studio event can be your own "Toastmasters" club on a small intimate scale. Think of it as practice for  your first television interview with Charlie Rose. (That is my personal mental goal.)

What should you consider saying? What should you tell each person? Here are a few suggestions (in no particular order):

1. Think about your audience. Their age, gender or background may influence their angle of interest and the direction of your studio "speech."

2. Keep  your artist's lecture energetic, enthusiastic and short. (How can you expect them to be excited about your work unless you are!)

3. Establish your credibility. At the very least you are the studio expert.  Consider that you are developing a unique artistic vocabulary with your chosen media. Without bragging  tell people about your areas of expertise, the shows you have been in or your experiences.  Remember "everyone loves a winner."

4.Avoid  using "art speak". Use words and a vocabulary suitable for the person(s) you are speaking to.

4. Listen to yourself and practice with your Open Studio audience. Avoid  audible pauses such  as "uhhh..." "and", 'ummmmm" and others. Audible pauses are very difficult for the listener to enjoy.

5. Be positive, this is not the time to beat yourself up with negativity. You are the "art star" at your Open Studio, act like one. (I said "art star" not prima dona.)

6. Be professional. Make every effort to make your Open Studio as the best possible open studio event.

7. Ask your audience for questions, you may learn a lot from the questions. (I learn from your comments and questions, so let me know what you have to say.)

8.Enjoy yourself! and enjoy your audience!

Sincerely,

Harriete

 


Free phone seminar about Open STudios

Are you planning an Open Studio Event?
I will be participating with Alyson B. Stanfied,  ArtBizCoach.com, in a free phone seminar.

Selfportraitberman72dpi
         

So, you want to invite people into your studio, huh? How will you get them there? What will you do when they arrive? What about insurance, sales, and refreshments?

                     

Hosting an open studio  sounds simple and inexpensive. After all, you have no space rental fees and low overhead. All you have to do is open the door and let the masses in, right? Well, not exactly. There's much more to plannning a successful open studio than that.

                     

A well-run Open Studio event can offer an artist exposure for their work and retail sales, but there are many issues involved.

                     

In this free teleseminar, I will discuss with Alyson Stanfield the essential information you need for planning your open studio event.

                     

  • Consider the upside and the downside of open studios
  • Set your goals and objectives
  • Promote the event
  • Prepare your space
  • Plan for safety, security, and comfort of your guests
  • Follow up with visitors   

Follow the conversation with the Open Studios Professional Guidelines document.

Harriete Estel Berman is the author of an ongoing series of Professional Guidelines for artists to promote understanding, checklists, and practical solutions for recurring issues in the art and craft community.  Harriete has also organized the professional development seminar prior to the SNAG conference for the last three years.    

Professional-guidelines-open-studios-artist300