Quote in title: Elbert Hubbard
Failure? Don’t you know failing is just learning, backwards?
Hello art fans, I hope this post finds you well. We have been busy, per usual.
We had the big show. Let’s talk about that so the band-aid comes off clean, shall we?
The first lesson came pretty quick. We were the only table to have our banner (one of them) on the table front. We shrugged our shoulders, the night we sat up, and thought maybe we are just being original? lol Of course not, that’s not how this works. 🙂
My art is up here buddy….
We watched the sparse crowd (more on that later), walk by and look down at our banner on the table and never look up again! OMG….we spent the first two hours learning this. Sheesh. We ripped that puppy down and threw it up behind us, lickity split. (As, soon as we figured it out, that is) And BAM! we had our first sale minutes later. ( It was from our neighbor vendor, Thank you Debbie! We love you.) Regardless, it lifted our spirits, which by then, were flagging.
We pitched and refined and strategized with our much more seasoned vendor neighbors, for the remainder of the first day. The crowd was light and not buying, we still had lots of hope for a better tomorrow. We met the most incredible vendors, all of which were helpful, positive and brilliant in their presentations/products. We were grateful for the advice and listened carefully. Using what felt right to us and discarding the rest. Lesson two was observe everything and stay positive and open to whatever happens next.
Show promotors. OK, here we go.
We started the next day at the show with cheers and good spirits on the floor. All the vendors had shook off the previous day and were actively pushing into the day. Seasoned show vendors were sure the Saturday would rock the casbah. We were also just so ready to sell a lot of kits…I mean we spent 8 weeks hand painting boxes!
The third lesson was how to recognize the truth of situations. We were not being negative to check with other vendors to see how their day was going. That simple act of checking in changed the emotional temperature of the vendors. Everyone was thinking they were personally having a terrible show. Big, expensive flopper. When we started talking to each other we realized everyone was in the same boat, the boat was the Titanic, but I digress. There was not enough people in the crowd to be able to make the show a success. It wasn’t us, all the vendors had made some sales, not all made enough to break even and worse some small business were panicked at their observable losses. We made enough sales to be at just shy of break even at the end of the second day. (expensive life lessons…sigh.)
We went home on Saturday a little defeated feeling but also, angry. We are not going to fold over a bad show. We were really upset for those vendors who were expressing that panic. The promotor had promised a certain number of people for the event. They failed and only delivered 1/3 of projected attendance. The vendors on the last day, was an attitude of forced cheerfulness. We all understood that even if the last day was spectacular, we were not going to call this a successful show. The crowd was no better. We all went and visited each others booths and bought from each other. We made sure every vendor made enough to at least get themselves back to their home, as some had traveled to be there. The love we shared with each other, for each other was magical. We really met and made 25 new friends! It was amazing. They are all amazing. We are grateful for our lessons. We ended the show by breaking a little better than even, no profit, but we were able to cover the costs we laid out to be there. Lesson four was screw making lemonade, if the situation is bad, accept it and find connections with all the good things available. They are there, you might have to be vulnerable or feel unsure about them, but if you look, they are always there. We baked those lemons into a fantastic pie and ate that bad boy. Whole. We are grateful.
We learned a lot and we lost some naivety. No longer wet behind the ears, we are preparing for an even bigger event at the end of the month. A 6 day extravaganza at the Portland Expo Center. Lesson five is, lick your wounds and then get up, be pro active and move on. Keep going. Failure? Well, that’s the well spring of wisdom, and that my friends is A-OK. Keep it moving. Our motto is and always will be: “we can be delayed but never stopped.” This is a saving grace motto. 🙂
We have returned to our little #PDXgaragegallery
Back home, we opened the gallery this weekend, on Sunday, as always. We had people from the show, show up! It was so awesome!! We also made a sale to the wonderful young woman who is going to light up the universe with her own passion and love. 🙂 Also, magical.
We are feeling like all the hard work is so worth it. Our little humble gallery is consistently moving our works out into the world. We are having the tremendous pleasure of knowing our patrons. We also are able to sell our work at wholesale prices, direct to the public. When we place our works in other galleries the prices are double if not triple our own pricing. We get it, it’s business. It also makes it impossible to know our collectors. I’m not a fan of that, either. Do you know how much joy there is in this room when people see the work and then must have it? When they can connect to the resonance of our love and work. It’s super, over the top, fun. For real. Our little idea of doing it ourselves, is working. Bang that gong people. Bang that gong. 🙂
We have New Work!
A little tour through the gallery show this week. 🙂
That’s all for now…
That’s all for now, I gotta get to the day job and make those greenbacks. Bill is working today too, we are raising the funds we need for the next adventure and that takes work and sacrifice. All our love to you all, and to those who serve ( Bill Alley) or have served, Thank You. We love you and will continue to fight for your good care, when you come home.
P.S. I have no idea why this post is showing things on their sides…technical difficulties, I apologize. 🙂