Dreaming of success, good! 4 steps to make Artweeks and Open studios the start!

©2011-Face of the Artist Reflected in her work-Mixed media collage- 30x30cm
©2011-Face of the Artist Reflected in her work-Mixed media collage- 30x30cm

Dreaming of a hugely successful art career?

Me too! But it’s one thing to have a dream, we all have dreams. I want my dream to equal reality.

I’m getting there but there’s always more to do.

In January I decided to be more proactive in my search for success. I’ve realised the importance of goals. And how writing them down or telling people makes them more likely to happen.

So, I signed up for Bucks Open Studios as an idividual and Oxford Artweeks as a group participant. It’s a commitment but I know it will happen now. I just need to make it successful, and that is up to me. Failure is not an option!

After an initial panic and a “what have I done” moment…

(Actually those keep returning at alarmingly regular intervals but I’m beating them into submission!)

…Preparations are underway!

As the Stowe exhibition finished yesterday. I’ve been reflecting on what worked well and how I can use it. Only this time I’m flying solo.

Progress so far…

1.Theme identified!

It’s not essential but themes indicate a cohesive body of work and help people know what to expect. I still have some work to create to fit in but most of it is now done. Framed or being framed.

I shall, of course, be considering the lessons I learned setting up Stowe

2. Publicity begun!

People can’t come to an event if they don’t know about it.

  • How much publicity and where is the tricky thing.
  • Press releases are still a new concept for me, especially press releases about myself! But they have to be done. Welcome to the murky world of self promotion. Why does it all see so tacky? I don’t know, but it’s a necessary evil.
  • My cards are printed – handy tip I had after the fact, always wait 24 hours before ordering online. Hopefully all errors will then leap out at you!
  • Preview invites still to do – next priority!
  • Catalogues are in progress.
  • I’m finding opportunities to exhibit are always good, the chance to get my work seen and publicise my event. They don’t always come in the form you might expect. Artweeks had Face of the Artist event at Banbury Town Hall.

3. Getting stuck in!

You have to be prepared to get your hands dirty so to speak!

There was a “crisis” as the children’s activities organiser for the Face of the Artist pulled out. As I have experience with children’s work I was able to step into the breech. It’s not the type of work I’m doing now, but being able to help out in an emergency helps foster good relationships. It’s given me more publicity and I’ve identified more exhibition opportunities. Plus I had fun drawing caricatures!

4. Preparing the Venue.

  • General tidying is an ongoing project. My house has never looked so tidy!
  • I’m enlisting the help of friends to get things looking good and help on the night!
  • I know where and how I’m going to hang work. Just needs to be done.
  • Raffle and refreshments sorted.

The pace is hotting up as Oxford Art Weeks looms, next month. The group exhibition at the Mill in Banbury, won’t be as stressful as Bucks Open Studios. But I’m beginning to feel the pressure.

And you know, I quite like it!

It’s interesting to see the differing approaches. Particularly the way Oxford Artweeks states they’re the first… and the best! They might say that, but I could not possibly comment!

I freely admit that organisation is not my strong point!

So, what am I missing? The preview is the part I feel least prepared for. Any suggestions how I can make it go like a dream?

Or perhaps you have some other tips about pro-activity?

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