So much has happened in the last two weeks that I need to catch you up. On March 3rd and 4th my sister Linda and I drove to South Bend and set up the mini gallery to participate in the For the Love of Art Fair.
It was a very nice venue with many large rolling carts for the artists to use. It was an easy set up and tear down. I am not one that just has to rush to get out of there as fast as I can. We can usually count on 1 1/2 hours for everything up to shutting the door of the Transit Connect.
Shireen Kline is the promoter of this show and that woman works her rear end off. She keeps in touch via emails and personal phone calls. She also promotes the heck out of this show, with billboards, television commercials, social media, promotional cards that she will send to the artists to give to their customers. Television stations came out for some live shots. She was there the whole time for set up and when it was time for tear down she she was right in there helping everyone. It seemed as if she was tireless.
We stayed at the Doubletree hotel which was attached to the Century Center via a walkway, very convenient for the tired artist. We could also keep our vehicle parked in the garage all day long. It was a great hotel, the beds were comfy, we received the usual choc chip walnut check in cookie that Doubletree is known for. We were a bit concerned about the other residents on our floor, they were young hockey players with a lot of energy. Lots of running and congregating outside of our door and someone also threw up. The hotel was right there cleaning up the mess and when the time came to go to sleep all was quiet on the floor, they did really well. Shireen had worked it out with the hotel at having artist pricing for our room which was very much appreciated.
Our room was on the St. Joseph river side and the city really utilizes the river. That is a walkway with a stage area which could accommodate many activities. It was impressive. Being a chilly day in the 30’s we did not venture down there though.
This is what that same area looks like at night. The rapids are lit up and changing colors all the time. The bridge down the river also has color changing lights and there are two sculptures on each side of the river that change colors. It was enjoyable to watch.
A shot of my booth head on. The pipe and drapes were already set up for the other booths behind and beside. The area was exactly 10 X 10 with no extra room so I was not able to put my drapes up with no extra room but it worked out fine. I would have preferred a little more room so that storage behind the tent could be used but Shireen had curtained off a corner of the expo hall so that the artists could store their items, which was pretty convenient also.
Right side of my booth. Another new option I have added to my booth this year are the lights though the lighting in the expo center was very good. I did like having the lights shine on the paintings and they were very easy to hook up. Shireen moved the art show to the South Bend area this year because the venue was nicer and the Elkhart area did not embrace the show. Though there were attendees never did I see large crowds in the aisles which I would have been exciting. My view is that this area was hit hard in the economic turn down of 2008 and they are being very cautious about spending their hard earned dollars and understandably so. I loved talking to the wonderful people that made their way into my gallery, that is always the fun part.
My next indoor art fair will be April 7,8 and 9th in Novi, Michigan. They have already sent me 50 of these cards to give away. I have not been to this venue before and it will be a new adventure. If you are in the area, stop on by and say hi and possibly pick up some happy art for your home.