When my friend and fellow artist Tony Williams (www.unamemento.co.uk) asked me to join him to sell artworks at the Summer Arts Market in Liverpool, I was initially a bit worried. Having never done an arts fair before I really didn't know what to expect and I was sceptical about how people would view my stuff. All the usual questions come into play. Is my stuff good enough? Would anyone like it enough to buy it? How much should I sell it for? Do I have enough stuff to sell?
Previous to now, printmaking had been a bit of a hobby, something that I liked doing for me, not anyone else. I had not given much thought to selling it, let alone selling it in person. But, working on the basis that I work better when I have a deadline (something that has been inbuilt in my psyche since school), I said yes.
Tony and I agreed to share a stall - a 6 x 2 foot table, in amongst 200 other artist-makers from all forms of arts and crafts. We agreed that if anything, it would be an educational exercise, and hopefully a fun thing to do. Anything sold would be a bonus.
So on a very hot sunny Saturday in June, we set up our stall and waited for the sales.
Sharing the stall was great. Tony had quite a few lino prints and a load of one-off cyanotypes so it all worked together well. We had a lot of great compliments about both sets of work which was encouraging, and plenty of people took a card, so that was also great.
It was a fairly long and tiring day, and we didn't sell an awful lot to be honest, but then after speaking to other stallholders, I think that was the case across the board. Maybe it was the good weather, or the fact that it's in the height of Summer, but most stallholders we spoke to said the sales were much better at the Winter Arts Market, when people are shopping for Christmas presents.
Still, it was a great experience and a good step into the world of arts fairs. We will be back in Winter!