I recently learned a quick way Photoshop users can make color palettes. Simply choose a photo or segment of a photo similar to what you want, choose Filters>Pixelate>Crystalize, and boom. Instant palette.
My piece for the Sailor Moon Tribute Show, Magical Girl Heroines: Sailor Moon and Sailor Senshi! The gallery will take place at Qpop in Little Tokyo on April 5th (this Saturday!) If you’ll be in the Los Angeles area or near it you should check it out :D (A lot of amazing artists!)
One of the major things I learned from Katsucon was how to start improving my display. The steps taken to improve on this were:
Moved posters forward instead of having them behind me. Having posters behind the table only works if you have an overabundance of things to sell. If not, 11x17’s are hard to see and are almost invisible.
Made a proper display for the buttons and backings for the posters. The purple frame to which the buttons are pinned is attached by velcro. It can be detached to re-position the buttons. I had been taping them onto cardboard before which proved difficult when I wanted to remove or add new ones. This display is reusable and looks a lot more professional.
Built the display up and over my head. I had shied away from doing so because I thought it would hide me. However, it framed me and my drawing space quite well!
Added a cheapo bin. I tossed in old prints, buttons and some small trout cutout lariats I made one night(and had no place for) and sold them for 2/$1.00. This worked out really well, especially since this was a highschool con. People who didn’t have much money at the end bought them and I went home with less stuff!
Could Have Improved
I need a camera besides my smartphone! This one was on my last list and it still hasn’t been remedied. Oops.
Blue isn’t the best color for the tablecloth. I bought a blue table cloth because it was the only color besides pink and orange that were in stock at the last minute. Funny thing was, I arrived to find that blue ones were already provided! I will use black or purple next time.
Bring hooks or stronger velcro to hang up the posters. After a while, they started to slant a bit like as in the table picture.
Have more posters so that the display can be expanded across the whole table.
Find a better way to display keychains.
Start looking into professional keychains.
What I Learned
Fish Art! I began selling original fish drawings and they were well received! Almost all of my goldfish pins sold, I sold one lure necklace and received compliments on my little felt coelacanths. A success, I say!
Selling my original crafts on Etsy might be a great idea!
Find out if there are designated table watchers. Some conventions provide this service for artists. Be sure to ask. It comes in handy, especially when you’re the only one behind your table and need to eat/use the bathroom.
Don’t bring snacks to CHS. The vendors are placed in the gym, so food and drinks aren’t allowed. Water is though. Bring water and plan to take a break to get some food in the cafeteria. This is where a table-watcher comes in handy.
My first time at Katsucon wasn’t an epic fail. One of the wonderful things about smaller conventions is that you can get up and leave your table to talk to other artists. I talked to many cool, more seasoned artists and asked about their experiences at other conventions. As a result, I learned that it wasn’t unusual to not do well at a particular con and I met an artist who had a worse first time than I did despite her work being really good! Each really is a different beast. From what I gathered, each convention is more than just different. It’s a whole other world! Some things that go like hotcakes at one won’t sell at all at another. Artists who are noticed at one place go unnoticed at another. It’s not just about who/what you draw either. One type of display works for this con, but not at another. It’s all in learning what sells well when, where and how to properly display it. Hearing that really boosted my feelings on Katsucon and large conventions. It was nice hearing from artists who did both great and not-so-great.
CHS was fun as always. It was nice meeting new people, seeing familiar faces and even buying things from other artists!
We reblogged one of purplerubyred’s posts many moons ago on AAtoast! It’s great seeing the evolution of her table along with her detailed post-mortem - insights and thoughts on how she develops her display and artist alley setup/prep after each experience. This may give you some ideas for your own operations!
I’ve received a lot of letters from artists asking to check out their artwork and their blog, and I’ve noticed that a lot of them openly write unhealthy amounts of negative comments about their artwork, it was super depressing, honestly. :( Confidence plays a very very important role as an artist, it’s what helps us learn and grow without the constant feeling of doubt and jealousy! You are a unique individual who must go down your own unique path, and as scary as it sounds, you can’t rely on others to hold your hand all the way through. You are the only one who can get yourself to where you need to go, and beating up your artwork is not the way! Trust yourself and your abilities to make a change, and you can do anything!!