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Julie Clawson

Medium: Jewelry
Year you most recently exhibited at this Show: 2018
Your Estimated Sales at this Show: $501 - $2000
Price Range of your Work: 12-1000
Number of Years You have Exhibited in this Show:
1st time
Number of Years You have been doing Art Fairs overall: 2-3 years
Attendance: (1 is poor, 5 is great) 3
Location: 4
Facilities: 4
Ease of Participating: 4
Sales: 2
Overall: 3
Booth Fee vs. Your Sales Ratio: Okay
Estimated Attendance: 501 - 10,000 people

Good Things about this Art Fair:
This is a very well organized and juried show. The quality of the artists there is fantastic and there is a good variety of art within each category.

They take care of the vendors very, very well - help in loading and unloading, cold water throughout the day (which was a Godsend on 90 degree days!), booth sitters, super yummy welcome BBQ dinner.

I greatly appreciated the detailed information about load-in procedures as it is helpful when doing a show for the first time to not feel lost when I show up.

What could this Art Fair have done better?:
Drawing in more crowds would have been nice as the crowd was very sparse. The very hot weather was part of the issue in getting people in, but I also noted that the lack of food and drink vendors led to people leaving the area to go get food (and not coming back). There were a couple of nicer restaurants in the area and only two food trucks. The issue was that the wait line for the food trucks was often 45min+ standing in the blazing sun.

As a vendor I don't have that sort of time to wait in line and had to rely on drug store snacks for my meals during the day. And I heard over and over again from attendees that they just couldn't take the heat any longer. Perhaps shade tent areas with seating and any type of frozen beverage truck would have helped keep people around.

Advice to Other Artists Considering this Show:
Do note that you have to cart everything from a parking lot to your booth space (if you can get a space in the lot with so many people with monster trucks and trailers taking up 5-6 spaces in a 70 space lot!).

As a disabled person I could not have managed if I hadn't brought an assistant with me. Positively, people are coming because they know this is an art show, so there was very little of the whole people getting mad that you don't have Walmart prices on your work thing.

Many vendors noted lower sales this year and I did not make what I expected, but I still did fair. It is a show worth doing and is run very, very well.

Cindy Cherrington

Medium: Glass
Year you most recently exhibited at this Show:
Your Estimated Sales at this Show: $501-$2000
Price Range of your Work: $25-$300
Number of Years You have Exhibited in this Show:
3-5 times
Number of Years You have been doing Art Fairs overall: 5-10 years
Attendance: (1 is poor, 5 is great) 2
Location: 4
Facilities: 4
Ease of Participating: 4
Sales: 3
Overall: 3
Booth Fee vs. Your Sales Ratio: Good
Estimated Attendance: 501-10,000 people

Good Things about this Art Fair:
Good artist amenities. This show has changed a lot since the 2013 review. it is run by a non profit organization.

They provide an optional big top tent to set up under. It doesn't cost that much more but with changing weather in Texas is was a great help for 2015 & 2016.

Volunteers came by for breaks and cold water. The organizers are helpful and care very much about the artists.

A huge storm came through in the middle of the night and the organizer came to the show to make sure things were secure.

Easy in and out (though you have to dolly in). Close parking for artists. BBQ dinner on night of set up. Helpful staff.

Visitors liked hearing about your art form. They thanked you for being there.

Bad Things about this Art Fair:
You have to dolly in from the close parking lot. It is mostly a retirement community and not a lot of disposable income.

They could use that banner still. No signs signifying the art show is on however it has been around for years and towns people already know of it's existence.

Advice to Other Artists Considering this Show:
As with any show, some did well others not so well. I personally did well.

There were 8 other glass artists for just shy of 100 artists. There was a lot of variety. Not all was top quality but there was good art. It wasn't all paintings or photography or jewelry.

It's a good show for a small town with a growing community. Get a space under the big top unless you have been doing shows along time and you have a good tent & weights.

Additional Commentary on this Show:
I think it is worth a try if you are already in Texas. Mid priced items sell best. Not a lot of really big art sold.

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J. Racette

Sometimes you just can't win for losing. This show has been around for decades and has enjoyed a respectable reputation among artists, but the negative forces of the universe converged upon this year's event and if something could go wrong, it generally did.
1. Show Organization. The show's director and some support staff apparently resigned the day before the show started, and were not visible or available during the event. Volunteers were present and endeavored to assist with questions, but few had answers.
2. Small Crowds. This Memorial Day weekend in Kerrville, there were no fewer than five separate festivals and art sales happening simultaneously - which made for some serious crowd dilution. Betweeen the weather (see next point) and the large number of competing festivals, crowds at this particular event were extremely light. From the vantage point of my tent space approximately 50 yards from the park entrance, and judging from the average number of visitors to my tent per hour, I estimate the event had *under 2000* visitors over the course of 3 days.

3. Inclement Weather. And then there was the weather: three full days of intermittent thunderstorms. The event organizers had neither hay nor sand at the ready to make pathways passable or stand-alone tent spaces (relegated to low-lying ground) inhabitable. I had 4-5 inches of standing water in my tent, as did many of my neighbors. Late in day two, some event volunteers placed a few sheets of plywood and sheetrock over large puddles in some pathway areas, but by that time it was too little too late. Kerrville art shoppers are a hardy bunch, but the thunder, lightning, and deluge of rain kept most of them home or at indoor venues.

4. Zero Event Venue Signage Visible from Roadway.
I saw plenty of sponsors' banners, but not one single banner or sign announcing the name of the event. The event's venue ran directly adjacent to a main highway, making banners highly effective. With a name as auspicious as the official Texas State Arts and Crafts fair, and with as cheap as vinyl banners can be had these days, you'd think the organizers would have plastered the fences on all sides of the event park with the event's official name and logo.

After I'd driven four hours home from the show, I received a rather awkward email to all participating artists from the event's now-former director officially announcing her departure and stating that she did not know about the future of the event. There are obviously some behind-the-scenes politics at work there.

The event's leadership dysfunctions could not have prevented the inclement weather, but the event committee's response to it was certainly hindered. As with everyone else, I do not know what the future of this event will be - but I am certain I will not be part of it.

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