A Photographers Guide to Selling Prints at an Art Show
In this article, we will give you some tips and tricks that you can use to make your next art show a financial success.
Know Your Audience
The audience at an art show is different from the typical customers you might get at a gallery or studio sale. For example, collectors who attend an art show may be interested in the investment potential of your work, while gallery visitors may be more interested in finding a special gift for a loved one. Knowing your audience will help you decide what type of work to show.
It's also important to know how your work will be displayed. If you’re planning on selling canvases, then you should make you have ample wall space to display them. If your work will be on a table or easel, then consider bringing a cloth or table covering to make it more attractive to the potential buyers who approach you throughout the event. Small table easels are a great way to prop up smaller canvases and photo prints to catch the attention of attendees as they walk by. Also, utilizing easels for larger canvases or framed prints helps break up the space as well.
Bring the Right Gear
If you plan on selling prints during an art show, bring enough to sell out. Photographers often sell multiple images of the same subject, so make sure you have enough prints to go around. You can bring along a variety of sizes of a photo or canvas but sticking to the same color frame or type of paper for each image will help to simplify the buyers choices and make it easier for you as well.
You will want to bring along a pop-up tent to cover your table and standing room, in case of a rain shower a tent will go a long way. For protecting your photo prints, pack them within a plastic sleeve, this helps to keep the image free of dust, and debris that may be at the fair. If you're transporting a large number of prints, consider using a portfolio or photo book to keep them safe.
Network Like Crazy
One of the best ways to sell your prints is to network with fellow photographers and artists. At an art show, make it a point to walk around, introduce yourself, and start conversations with other artisans. You may also want to reach out to other attendees before the event. You can do this by joining a photographers' forum and asking if any other members are going to be at the show. This can help you make connections that can lead to future collaborations and referrals.
Don't Rely on Foot Traffic Alone
If you want to sell your work at an art show, expect to work for it. While you should certainly put your prints out where people can see them, don't just sit back and wait for people to walk over and buy them. Instead, walk around the front of your booth and talk to people. Ask if they have any interest in buying art.
If someone looks interested, ask what kind of pieces they are interested in. You should also make sure to properly identify yourself and your business. You may want to wear a branded t-shirt, or name tag so that people know who you are, what you do, and what you’re offering at the event.
Bring Lots of Business Cards
Also, you should always bring business cards to the art show. However, don't just hand them out willy-nilly. Wait until someone shows interest in your work, and then give them a card. Although the card itself may not lead to a sale right away, it will help you keep track of leads and potential clients. It will also give you a great opportunity to put a stamp on your business, which is especially important when you're selling prints.
Set a Price and Stick To It
Depending on your photographic discipline, you may be able to charge hundreds or even thousands of dollars for a single print. However, you'll want to start small at an art show. If you've never sold your work before, set your prices a little lower until you get comfortable selling prints in-person.
As you gain more experience and sell more prints, you'll be able to increase your prices. Just be careful not to set your prices too high. If you charge too much, potential customers will walk away, but if you price your work too low, you won't be able to make a sustainable living as a photographer.
Display Your Work on Professional Canvas
How you display your work can make all the difference in the world at an art show. Having bland paper prints doesn’t really cut it anymore. The art show audience expects more, and you should as well, especially if you want to make money. The good news is that there are many options out there when it comes to displaying your best prints.
One of the best ways to display your work is with Canvas Wrap PRO. Canvas wraps are known for being durable, and they prevent the print from sagging or warping over time, which is something that an art show audience will appreciate. Canvas prints are quickly becoming the preferred medium of many art collectors, and Canvas Wrap PRO is definitely one of the best ways to go about presenting your prints at an art show.
Art shows are a great opportunity for photographers to get their work in front of potential buyers. To increase your success at these events, you'll want to make sure you have the right gear, set a price for your prints, and don't rely solely on foot traffic. You should also be prepared to network like crazy and have plenty of business cards on hand to give out to people who are interested in your work. In the end, selling prints at an art show is a lot of work, but the payoff can be well worth it.