This past weekend I participated in my town’s open studio tours. Since I couldn’t have my home studio on the tour (too messy), I shared a large space with 3 other artists.
We had all worked on advertising the event and, luckily, drew in quite a few people over the weekend.
Having participated in art shows/sales in the past, I knew I needed a way to engage people and keep them looking at my pastel landscapes. So I created this small and very simple display of the stages of a pastel painting:
Since most people don’t know how a pastel painting is created, this provided a straightforward and easy-to-understand visual. I didn’t include any text in the display, which gave me the opportunity to explain the process. I was pleasantly surprised at the number of people who were interested and even thanked me for having the display.
(I also learned that many people didn’t know what a pastel stick looks like, so next time I’m going to add to the display by having a small box of various brands of pastels. I may even have some scraps of pastel paper set out so people can try their hand at it.)
Below the display I had a sheet that explained what pastels are and how they are made. I found it interesting that no one read this, but they seemed open to hearing a brief explanation from me. Next time I probably won’t take up the table space with any written text.
I can’t claim that having these visual displays resulted in any sales during the event, but it was certainly a way for people to get to know me a little better and feel comfortable leaving their email address. Now when I contact them about future shows, there’s a better chance that they will have a favorable memory about me and my art.
Quiet River – Pastel, 9″ x 12″
If you’re looking for a way to engage with visitors at your next fair or open studio event, I recommend trying this idea out yourself. At the very least, you’ll have an easy conversation starter, and who knows—it might even lead to a sale or two!
Special thanks to Patricia Prendergast for sharing this post! To see more of her artwork, please visit her website.
GET EMPTYEASEL IN YOUR INBOX
We'll send you articles & tutorials right as we publish them, so you never miss a post! Unsubscribe here at any time.