I feel myself extremely fortunate that I have very sweet and loyal fans. At my most recent art show in Alpine, CA, I had the pleasure of having some very enthusiastic ladies come to seek me out.
One woman had seen a piece that a friend of hers had purchased at the same show last year. She was a funny and interesting lady who ended up buying 5 pieces! She is a bird watcher as well as an adrenaline junky and we had fun talking about the motorcycle she is planning to buy.
Another lady I had met just a couple of months ago at the Circle of Art show in Borrego Springs. She was there before I was and patiently waited while we lifted the sides of the EZ Up to let her see all of the new goodies I had brought to the show. She ended up purchasing 2 pieces and custom ordering 2 more.
I just had a conversation about sales this morning with a friend. You see, I don't offer pieces for sale on my website because since everything is one of a kind, it is very difficult to keep up inventory. I would have to be updating frequently, or hold items at home that I want to sell online. However, I have found that while people frequently look at my website, they very infrequently purchase anything from there - even my Etsy site. Since I am out at shows about every other month or more, it just makes sense to bring all of the inventory to each show. That way those "in-person" customers can see the full range of what I have available. On Etsy, I tend to list items that I make multiples of (like my plant markers and greeting cards) but I have recently listed some of my other art pieces on there as well. The problem with this is that many of those pieces are also for sale at the co-op gallery in Lake Arrowhead and if an item sells in the gallery, I might not be aware of it for up to a week. Which means, if someone also purchases it online, I am in big trouble - only one item, two sales. I am having to go and look at my items in the gallery much more frequently and hope that scenario does not happen.
I am wondering how other people may deal with this kind of thing. I know that many artists are able to list and sell prints of their paintings online and then keep their originals for galleries and shows. However, all I can do are some cards, not prints due to the nature of my art - it would take away from the fact that my art is on glass, not paper or canvas. Suggestions or ideas are more than welcome!!
I leave you with photos of the custom orders just completed--
"Acorn Nut" - Acorn Woodpecker
"Waterborne" Great Blue Heron