Saturday, August 05, 2006

Exhibiting--Day Two

Herewith the blow-by-blow of Day Two, now blessedly over:

Saturday, August 5, 2006
@88 degrees; sunny and dry

3:00 Arrive and set up. Am exhibiting Lilah S. for the last time.
3:01 A provocative stare from a passerby promises, at least to my mind, an exciting day.
3:07 A Saab pulls up and a bunch of women come out of the restaurant next to me and fill it with boxes. Must have been some kind of shower. Lots of airkisses and goodbyes. Nobody so much as glances at my painting.
3:25 Lots of staring from passerbys, but no talking. I am loathe to initiate conversation, but I do smile and make eye contact. Less foot traffic than I would have thought, given this being the first nice Saturday in a while.
3:35 Strange looking guy asks if the galleries are open. Mine is, FYI. I point him down the street; wish him luck. He is wearing shorts, dark socks and sky-blue Chelsea boots. Looks a little like Cosmo Kramer, but spookier.
3:55 Meet a woman--a fellow portraitist--named Patricia O'Donnell. She told me John Sargeant preferred to paint people he didn't know, rather than his friends and acquaintences. Made him less hung up on the absolute realism and more in tune with the essence. This is from her, not me.
4:25 Unbelievably slow. I'm going to pack up soon if nobody else comes by. I wonder if the good times on Saturday are earlier.
4:45 This is how it looks:

If you've been following, you can tell it looks just like Day One. I wonder if I am better served bringing a new painting every day, or sticking with the one painting per week strategy currently in play. You may be able to zoom in and read my bit of promotional literature on Lilah's upper right corner. If not....

5:05 While walking home I run into a woman walking two dogs. We talk painting for ten minutes or so. Makes me feel better about the day, but with only one flyer distributed, I feel that I have not moved the needle even the slightest bit. I will spend the rest of the weekend reflecting on slight tweeks I can make to my marketing initiative in time for Tuesday. Tomorrow I am going to reconnoiter the neighborhood again to identify alternative sites.

The key is not to panic; make incremental changes rather than wholesale ones; stay the course to a degree. But still, this was a downer.

ps--I could have sold more paintings in the Valley of Death.


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