BetterPhoto Q&A
Category: New Questions

Photography Question 
Jeanne Griffith

Tips on Art Show Exhibiting

I am doing an exhibit and will have a 10x10' space inside a tent. I have three easels and one stand-up display rack. I do not know how many prints to have made just for matting for people to thumb through, and I need advice in general on how to get started with this. Any help will be appreciated.

To love this question, log in above
2/24/2006 4:14:53 AM

John Rhodes
BetterPhoto Member Since: 2/24/2005
  Jeanne, I am responding because I have the same concerns. I am getting prepared for a couple of shows this spring. I have a 10x10 canopy, a 6' folding table with cover, and have 4 pro panels on the way. One of my biggest concerns is "how many prints do I take to the show?" I sure don't want to run out of anything early in the day. I don't want to over-produce either. I don't have much experience, and I think these concerns will be easier in the future (more intuitive). Anticipating responses from fellow BP'ers who have been there and done that. Thanks for posing the question.

To love this comment, log in above
2/25/2006 7:11:59 AM

Kerry Drager
BetterPhoto Member
Kerry's Photo Courses:
4-Week Short Course: Creative Close-ups
  Hi John and Jeanne,
Great question. Following is a previous Forum thread on the subject ... with lots of excellent tips and techniques from those who have been there and done that!

Hope that is helpful!

To love this comment, log in above
2/27/2006 1:05:08 PM

Kerri C. Janto   Hi,
I have been doing local art shows for about 3 years now. My main suggestion would be to make sure you have a ample variety of matted photos to sell. I know it is a lot to put out a first but if you don't have a lot to choose from people may not even look at your work let alone buy. I have seen several other photographers attempt some of the shows I do and fail for this reason. You need to have a variety to draw the customers in. Also make sure you have some framed and ready to sell. Remember to give it some time and not to judge everything by your first show. Hope this helps some and Good Luck!

To love this comment, log in above
2/28/2006 8:55:00 AM

Charlie Vickers   Jeanne and John,
First off I would like to say just have a "ball" with the art shows..relax and have fun. The people that will view your work will thrill you with their compliments and inspire you to continue on. I have been doing some shows for two years...some successful and some not very, but I have enjoyed each one. I started with a 10 x 10 tent and homemade racks and now use carpet covered office dividers that are about 6' tall and they can be configured in a number of different arrangements. Drapery hooks work very well for hanging framed work. It makes a very neat booth and the used office panels can be picked up for little $$$. I use 3 Houtz & Barwick foldup display bins for my matted work. They are great for browsing. You have to have a fair number of prints framed to better display your work, plus the framed work just makes your tent look so much more professional, and inviting...however, my experience and others I have talked with is that you will sell few framed prints. But you MUST have them. I started with a variety of matted prints, but found that people were always wanting a different mat. With that in mind I started bagging the prints just with the foam backboard, ommitting the mat, and have found no negative effect on my sales. You might try both ways and see which works best for you. What Kerri says about variety is important. Numbers are harder to define, because what is popular at one show may not sell at all at the next show. Just prepare what you are comfortable carrying, don't overburden yourself. You will learn something at each show. If you have a print that you sell out of, be prepared to take orders and ship to the buyers. Have plenty of business cards and have them displayed in a prominent place...they are very inexpensive advertising. Good Luck and God Bless your effort.

To love this comment, log in above
2/28/2006 5:01:45 PM

John Rhodes
BetterPhoto Member Since: 2/24/2005
  Charlie, Kerri, and Kerry, Thank you very much for the advice and encouragement. I'm really looking forward to the upcoming shows. I love meeting the people and having my photography well accepted. I may not recoup the cost of all the booth gear and prints, but I'll have a great time.

Most of all, thank you Jeanne for asking the perfect question. All the best to you. Please contact me to let me know how your exhibit went.


To love this comment, log in above
2/28/2006 6:39:17 PM

Jeanne Griffith   Thank you all for your responses to this question. You have helped me decide what I am going to do. Good luck to all.


To love this comment, log in above
2/28/2006 9:11:40 PM

Log in to respond or ask your own question.