I’ve been quite busy lately and have been putting off writing my most recent Artist Notes for my blog. I do, however, keep my Facebook Page updated with the latest news and artwork as it happens.
My big news for the month, and autumn, is that I have 32 of my Portraits up on the walls at Bark! Espresso in Seattle near the Northgate Mall as of the 10th of October 2014. Bark! Espresso is a dog friendly cafe and is part of a larger complex that does boarding and grooming and has a very nice little store. The cafe even has my favorite drink, Italian Sodas, and while you might think that all cafes would have this not all do – that’s why I never go to Starbucks. Starbucks doesn’t have Italian Sodas and there’s something wrong with that. 😉
7 out of the 32 pieces at the cafe are originals and I have them all in lovely frames with white matting. I managed to find a bulk frame merchant online and ordered the frames at a very reasonable cost. The cost of 32 frames is still a large enough number, even at a bulk discount, that it makes me cringe a little but taken individually I couldn’t have gotten a better price for matted frames anywhere else. For labeling I made small labels that I attached onto the glass of each piece with decoupage (fancy white glue). I did this for a quite few reasons: I won’t have to worry about keeping track of 32 different labels during transport and setup, I won’t have to worry about labels getting knocked off of walls, I won’t have to worry about anyone mistaking which piece is which, individual labels take up room and I didn’t want to break up the visual flow with little scraps of paper with text on the walls, setup is incredible easier without having to place 32 labels, and I didn’t want to write information on the mats inside the frames as some do and that makes it easier to reuse mats for different artworks. All I will even have to worry about it removing the labels pasted onto the glass which will be pretty simple when the time comes. Solvents and razor-blades will do the trick. I also made a biography with information about the work and commissions and other relevant tidbits.
For the installation I brought along my own hammer, finishing nails, and blue-tack (to keep the frames from going crooked). I eyeballed placement when hanging it it turned out nearly perfect, I did have to re-hang a couple when I was slightly off of placement. There was a lot of mounting a picture and then standing back to make sure it’s where it should be to make the most of the space I had available to me. I had the entire cafe and the space is misleading. 32 pieces sounds like a lot, and it was, but I probably could have fit in a lot more if I so wished. It took me a good 2 hours to finish the setup and during that time I had 2 wonderful people ask me about commissions – for a dog and a cat. People love their furbabies and this cafe is the perfect place to show off my pet portraits.
The artwork will be up for at least 3 months so if you have time you might think about getting a coffee or hot chocolate or italian soda and checking out my pet portraits in person.
I want to also add a note here for all of the artists out there. I did use a contract for this show even though it’s not a traditional gallery. I used and edited one of the contracts supplied in Business and Legal Forms for Fine Artists by Tad Crawford. I took out all of the parts that weren’t relevant and printed a copy for myself and for the owner of the cafe. The point of a contract is to protect yourself as well as the gallery as it clarifies in writing any details for the show such as where the art will be located, for how long, commission percentage, what happens in case of loss or damage, if the gallery goes out of business what happens to the artwork, and most importantly which pieces of artwork will be in the gallery and the retail price of each.
Here are a bunch of photos of the setup:
This is an example of how each piece looks and you can see how they were packaged for transport. Each frame came with corner covers and individual bubble bags. This photo doesn’t show the labels that I pasted onto the glass. This portrait is of Coco-Nut.
I managed to get all of my artwork and hanging supplies in these bags. Small artwork is a lot easier to transport than larger. I have fond memories or taking my large colored pencil and collage work to the farmer’s market in Boise, ID. What a pain. 🙂
These next photos show the final setup: