12.04.2010

We Do Change

It's hard to believe that I sit here now with a small loss of words.  This morning I had a whirlwind of "stuff" to say about shows and being an artist.  But then like magic it happened.  The crowds came, the crowds purchased, and the excitement of what I am doing right now surged from inside my heart.   Seriously folks this blog post was going to be TOTALLY different this morning.  I had it all laid out in my head.   Well here, let me tell you a tinge of what was going on this morning.  Gotta second?  

So this is the last show of the season for me.  I'm not that seasoned with shows, but I've done enough to get really excited with new ones, and enough to know that from many artisans that this was THE show of the Christmas season.  It is a juried show, with only 125 artisans accepted a year.  I should remind you too, that this is called Apple Annie's Craft Show.  I've yet to talk about this in depth on my blog, but there is such a difference between doing an art show and a craft show.  Yes.  There is.   And I suppose this is what got me so worked up yesterday. 

So anyhoo.....we set up for the preview party Thursday PM.  I had it all product wise....literally.  And perhaps too much.  But that's a conversation I have to have with myself.    I was tickled to see Bailey Jack (an art peep)  who helped me set up and we went to dinner.  I really didn't pay much attention to what was around me art wise.  I was in my little bubble of joy.
 
But then we got back to a very slow crowd.  Thursday night it turns out is a special invite only party for those working the show and one guest.  I was too excited about my new products and the set up to care about sales this night.    I drove my hour home singing and dreaming of the 1,000's of people I'd meet on Friday.  Yep.  Dreaming is something I do very well.


So Friday came.  And like a clock work women came in droves with their Christmas everything on.  They were all SO happy.  The atmosphere was brimming with joy for the season.  I enjoyed meeting so many new people and talking about my work.   My friend Catherine came and brought yummy lattes and helped me sell this and that and this and that.  Then 2 o'clock came.....and Catherine had to leave.  And I started to....well.....let's just say that it got very slow for many, many hours.  And my mind started to wonder.....and my body started to peek around at the vendors.  And well, let's just say I took a step back and said, man.  What have I become?  sigh.



So this is where I have to say something strong.  I think there is a place for all of us who create.  Whether it's Santas, gourd bowls, Christmas centerpieces, or hand knitted scarves.   There is.  And honestly on the ride home today I was thinking to myself, the crafters with me this weekend...well kudos for them for having the COURAGE to get out there, share their talents, and spend a weekend selling at the biggest Christmas Show in the Altanta area.  I mean seriously.    There are so many of you out there right now, perhaps reading this blog for the first time who fear getting out there and selling your work.  But the vendors in the Carroll Center with me, let's just say they made me stop and think about who I am and who I want to be.  You know, things they do not change, but we have the power to change ourselves.

I will continue along this path of being a thriving artist.  I have so much to be thankful for after this weekend.  Profitable sales, meeting new friends, building lasting friendships, being inspired by others and being gently reminded that I am not alone on this journey.  And I will always enjoy being in the company of a courageous crafter in a church gym.

PS  If you'd like to see more pictures of the show, head on over here.


It's Sunday morning and I am back in this post.  Sweet Dianne left a comment that I replied to, but now think I'll share my response to it here.  She said my post seemed a bit confusing as to what I was trying to say.  Super sorry for that bloggers.  But you know when you have so much swirling in your head and you write it and think it sounds great to you, makes sense to you?  But maybe not so much to others?  Yeah.  I may have crossed that line.  So here was my response:
Sweet Dianne,

I'd say it is VERY good to be open to change. And that was the main point for myself, I need to change my attitude. I think I've put myself into a bubble of high expectations for not only myself but those around me. I need to let go of the stigmas and enjoy this journey more. You know, the variety of work at the show made me realize that by offering so many different crafts, you appeal to a broader audience. My audience did come, and man I had the best sales of the year in a church gym of all places! I have work in 4 galleries, a booth in a local store and this was my 4th show since October 31st.  So about change, the show will not change...it's been this way for 30 years, and it is the best show by far I've been in behind the scenes wise. But I can. 

I've been struggling with my path for sometime now.  There are so many directions to take as an artist.  And although I love the shows, my question on Friday, "what have I become?", was during a slow time when every part of my body ached and I missed my children terribly.    And as I was doubting my place, a customer entered the booth and exclaimed "There is so much JOY in this art!!!"   I got teary, said thanks, and breathed in slowly knowing my heart was where it was supposed to be.  Now this life may not always be easy , comfortable or exciting.  But it is my journey to take.   So readers, I hope you are a little less confused, and don't mind me spilling my soul out right here.  I think it's good for you to know that I have true fears about my future, true doubts about the steps to take, and true passion for what I am doing.   It's so easy to paint a "Happy" picture in blog world.  I hope that I paint a  "true" picture for you.  Best wishes with your own creating.  And thanks so much for your honesty Dianne. 

11 comments:

susan said...

Jenni!
I'm the one with the walker! My daughter came home with my "gift" and hid it from me to give as a Christmas gift. I am sooooo excited!!And I also loved Liliana-my girlfriend is going to love her too! Thank you for holdong it! Also, after the holidays, maybe I can call you- i have a blog called permissionlist.wordpress.com
and I wanted to know if I can pick your brain a little? Loved your qirky studio space-so inspiring_Susan

Sadie Inspired said...

Sounds like it was a wonderful day. I am so happy for you. :)

Dianne said...

I'm not sure what you are trying to say in this post. Is it good to change? Are others at the show doing so or not? Or are you just trying to inspire those to have courage to get out there? I'd love to know more on your thoughts about this. I love your sales space and am very inspired by it. I've used some of your wonderful display ideas to my advantage and will continue to do so. Thanks so much for all your inspiration and advise. I truly appreciate your blog and your art. You were one of the first blogs I started following.

Jenni Horne said...

Sweet Dianne,
I'd say it is VERY good to be open to change. And that was the main point for myself, I need to change my attitude. I think I've put myself into a bubble of high expectations for not only myself but those around me. I need to let go of the stigmas and enjoy this journey more. You know, the variety of work at the show made me realize that by offering so many different crafts, you appeal to a broader audience. My audience did come, and man I had the best sales of the year in a church gym of all places! I have work in 3 galleries, a local store and this was my 4th show since October 31st-best sales by far. So change, the show will not change...it's been this way for 30 years. But I can.

But I also wanted to say a strong point that we as artists need to have more courage and put ourselves out there more....even if it's a local Christmas bazzar, because until you do, there is no way to know what doors of opportunity lay ahead.

Heather said...

This was a very good post. You do not have to apologize for being excited about your weekend. I am excited for you. You learned you have come a long way. You are talking about the journey. You had to step back and look at how far you have come. Sometimes when you are in it you forget to look around and see it. And you think things are not moving fast enough.
Loved this. Thanks for sharing your excitement.

Linda R said...

WOW, I really love your "corner"and so excited for you as it had to be thrilling to be you this weekend! Still not sure if there is hidden meaning in your post and you are trying to be tactful and kind and to say something without saying it...I think your work is wayyyyyyyyyyyy better than you think it is - and I know what you mean about being in Blogville where we always say "love it" "love your stuff" and us wondering am I really doing ok? You ARE an awesome artist, one with heart - just keep going - so proud of you!! Would love to know more one day about tiles - always looking at them at the home store and wondering hmmmmmmmmm....I need to do something with those....thanks again.

HollyM said...

Well, you just sound human to me. I was a little confused too when I read the first part of your post, but when you explained I got it. we do have to follow our hearts.

Beth HF said...

Jenni-I completely, emphatically, wholly, totally understand where you are coming from. Making art, selling art, sitting behind it in a "booth", my goodness we are jack of all trades. I have only done one craft show. It was fun but so tough to be right there smiling behind the wares. But then, everyone was so receptive. And I tried not to take it personally when someone strolled right by to purchase a macrame bunny Santa.
I too, had to remind myself that most (but not all) of the crafters had to have enjoyed making what they sold that day as they worked in their studios/living room/garages even if I didn't "get" all of it, personally.
I'm thinking if I ever do a show again it will be just in a "fine" arts type of deal-but mainly just because I always want to meet other artists and be surrounded by their creativity. It's a beautiful space you made. I could just hang out there all day:)
Hugs,
Beth

Dianne said...

Thanks so much for the reply. That's what I thought you were getting at, but just wanted to make sure. I have a very wide variety of items in my display: mixed media and vintage redo jewelry and hair ornaments, oil paintings, vintage tea wares and depression glass, handmade and altered household items, Christmas ornaments, little girls gloves with lace added... So I appeal to a broad audience as well... I think it works best for me, as I have a lot of different interests.

Kent Nulty said...

I met you at Apple Annie's last Saturday and was inspired to paint a large canvas for a friend of mine. She loves birds too!! I think your work is so fun and full of LIFE. Great job and great blog, so honest and true! Best of luck to you.

~ Dawn ~ said...

Jenni,
Thank you for the heart felt post. It's funny. It brings back memories. It was about two years ago, or maybe more now, that I walked into Vintage Flea as an aspiring artist who had just started a business. You looked over my jewelry offerings... you like the stamped disk necklaces. I was at a place of putting myself out there.... being at the mercy (if you will) of others. And it all started with a huge success two years before that at Shakerag!
I have now sold my business and adopted two more children. I find myself tempted to "get out there" again but for now... I am where I am supposed to be.
Your post was sweet... and your talent overflows! Thanks for sharing it with all of us.

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