creative entrepreneurs do not have the option of avoiding these questions, when they are posed… if they plan to sell.
Yes youare a creative… in thestudio. When you step into the “Fair”, you are a sales person… Your job is to sell the art. If this is difficult hire an agent or a sales rep.
How Artist should Handle the top questions they never want to be asked…
I am an artist I have friends who are artist and I’ve heard the complaints so when I saw the article ”
“How to Talk to Artists at Art Festivals- The Do’s and Don’ts ” http://goo.gl/N9MdX.
several times. I first ignored it and avoided responding, but I have a different view.
Today I counsel Creative Entrepreneurs and one of the sessions preps them in handling these uncomfortable questions. As I read this again I felt the urge to highlight the opportunity. Frankly we Creatives, Artist designers need to get over ourselves and be of service to the customer. Yes we need to eat a bit of humble pie. There is a way to do so without losing ones dignity!
- I’m so sorry … we price our product so you get the best deal we can possible afford. What’s your budget maybe I can find something in that range or recommend a fellow artist who may falls within your budget.
- I’m sorry this is the original but we do have prints.
- No, I have another in the series , or another series in that size or color”
- I do not sell prints but I will do commissioned pieces.
- I sell prints on special order (remember You still own the copyrights to your image… ) visit my website at
- “What makes you ask that”… listen their response, it might inspire you or open up an opportunity…
- Well yes, it is a part of a series/ set, let me walk you through the companion pieces
Get my drift? Stop being “sensitive about your sh**” )
REPLY:– I developed the technique over X number of years and t pheiece over 5 day; or 5 months or 5 years … the point Artist need to tell their stories
REPLY:– Tell them your story sell your work and gives it value. The better the story… In fact set up a show area it attracts real art lovers
#5b when asked … with the intention of, “I’ll go home and make one just like it!”REPLY:– Stop being afraid YOU studied the masters at college.“I teach this technique as well as creativity workshops to help you define your own style and have labs wher you can develop you skills, Take my card and give me a call or better yet leave your info with technique on my guest book and I’ll contact you.
REPLY:– I never noticed, I assure you our process of development is unique, we may have similar aesthetic, values or background. Then tell them about YOURS
#7 “It must be fun to just paint all day.” and/or “What do you do for a living?”
Unfortunately the process is not so cut and dry, we have to do research, drafts and aside from the actual art, their is like any other person the paperwork.
REPLY:– what a wonderful idea, I’d encourage you to. In fact I (or a colleague0 offer some workshops that are great. Why not give me your contact email, and I’ll shoot you notes on these as they come along.
REPLY:– – I appreciate your honesty… but art is a conversation, and in your very reaction there is a response, while I do not agree with your viewpoint, I surely do appreciate the fact that you took the time to respond! The atmosphere at art fairs or Pop up shops are can vary from slow and intimate to fast paced and “commercial”! Set the mood and keep in a positive mindset.
Sure but you will need to make a refundable deposit that will be forfeited if it is not picked up by (give date on receipt).
When someone inquires about a piece on hold.It is presently on view?hold for a customer. If you give me your info I will make an effort to clarify their interest and get back to you.
– Recently someone threw a tantrum, “You can’t talk to me like that”
At first I was taken aback, my words had no malice , vulgarity or even emotional overtones, It was fairly neutral. Especially since it was written, even casual. In looking back I realize this person simply did not want her actions challenged. Do not take comments as a personal challenge. I was expected to agree with what she did or said and I had clearly indicated that I had not! Look
If you want to open your mouth to speak be prepared for ANY reaction.
Lesson One: Consumers need to understand the artist Artist, Understanding the shopper is a quest in YOUR space… adding some type of communication that introduces who you are and your art is simply good manners. With technology it can be a short URl, or qr code that points to your About page on your website or a special Landing page for the event
- Post your policy especially Graphic signage and encourage show promoters to post these and send out pre- show notices including what actions will be taken- eg removal from premises. (these man nothing without teeth)
- Artist should have an assistant at the least a notebook and pen (attached). When you need them to move on politely say..
- “I’m enjoying this dialogue and would love to continue this , why not connect on (social media channel) or leave your info and I’ll give you a call, or i’ll add you to my email list so I can invite you to a more intimate event!
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Consumers should not take up an artist’s time chatting;-Consumers should Never take pictures of the art unless you ask the artist for permission first.