Show Report: Gosport Arts Festival

No, this isn't the exciting news I promised in my last post. I realized I hadn't reported on our second show of the year, in Portsmouth, VA: the Gosport Arts Festival, so here goes. This was our first time doing the show, but it came highly recommended to us by our friends Martha and Gaff Pearce of Lazy Lizard Pottery (we love Gaff's work, and have a stunning "Waterfall" vessel of his in our home gallery. That's Gaff in Florida, showing off his Award of Distinction from the Lake Wales show, with one of the waterfall vessels in the center of the top shelf).

The trip up to Virginia was fine, and our location at the show couldn't have been more convenient; it was within a half block's walk to our hotel! The show staff was helpful, setup went smoothly, the weather was fine (though there was a tremendous thunderstorm late Friday night, but our Flourish tent was tight as a drum!). Saturday was very hot and humid, but ours was a shady spot, so it wasn't too bad. Artists who'd done the show before commented about how sparse the crowd was in comparison to other years; there were lots of lookers, and very few buyers. We did sell a few pieces, but Saturday's overall results were disappointing (although I do have to point out that we've lowered our expectations in this year of such a terrible economic climate). On Saturday evening, after the show closed, the staff held an awards dinner for the artists. The Gosport Arts Festival benefits the Edmarc Hospice for Children in Portsmouth, and many of the volunteers who staffed the show were affiliated with Edmarc as well. It was a lovely evening, and though we didn't win an award, it was nice to meet our fellow artists and see how our work benefits this effort.
Sunday was a gorgeous day: bright, sunny, and much cooler; a perfect show day, and it was Mother's Day too. The crowd was noticeably larger, with many family groups with mothers carrying flowers. We sold much more on Sunday, and were able to meet all of our expenses plus have a bit more, which is great (those lowered expectations again). I sold 'Sinuous Rhythms III, Spirals' to a woman who came back twice to look at it. I've found that if people are really drawn to a piece of my work, they either buy it right on the spot, or they take time to walk away and think about it. And, if the piece truly resonates with them, they return to buy it. I love it when that happens, because it means my work has found a good home.

We enjoyed our time in Portsmouth, and would do the show again. In a better economic climate, I think this could be one of our better shows of the's hoping that will be true in 2010.