Do Division for 2010 is in the books, and for me, it was successful. The goal at these festivals is exposure. People often commented that my prices were “cheap”, but for me, that is the point. “Buy my stuff since it is affordable, but I don’t plan on doing this forever.” I see this as just a stepping stone. Plus, I get to see how people respond to my work which is hard to do when people do it anonymously on the web. I did have a few people say they are looking for creative people and illustrators so that was positive. Is a street festival always going to give you that type of exposure? Probably not, but you never know who might see your work.
On to the work…the comment I got/heard the most was that the work is “fun”. It is oversimplified, but it is really what I am going for. I want the work to be fun. I’m not trying to make a big statement…I just want to make work that is joyful. Let’s look at everything in more detail:
Chicago 2010: This is the piece everyone gravitates toward. Even if they like my other work…they buy this one. I think the key is that people relate to it since they are Chicagoans. I’d like to think that people can relate to it AND they like the style. I hope that it is not just seen as another Chicago poster that you could get anywhere. It is Chicago, but it is done in a unique and “fun” style. I think the key with these festival pieces is that people can relate to it, and it showcases my personality. If it is just a landscape of Chicago, it is just another piece of artwork. The style should set it apart.
No Waiver Park: I had many people look but no one bought. It makes me think this would have been best as an illustration. Even if they liked this one…they usually liked the Chicago poster more. I have a feeling this will be a mistake I will learn from.
Consume/Create T-Shirt: This was my biggest disappointment. I barely got comments on this. I still love this design and idea, but I think it is way too cerebral for people. I thought the fists might get people interested even if they did not know what it means, but at least for this festival, I was wrong.
Consume/Create Sticker: If people saw it, they liked it. I only sold one. I’m thinking about turning these into magnets before the next festival. Once again, I still love the design, but it was a tough sell since it was hard to see as you walked by my booth.
Cube Man: I thought more people would like this, but I only sold one. I think I should have put it in a different place since it was hard to see as you passed by. I’m not giving up on this one.
Lego Goes: This was my biggest surprise. I got MANY comments on it. Plus, many people were drawn to it as they walked by. This was a good marriage of style and recognizability. People got interested since it was a recognizable figure. And, they liked the treatment of the design. It was the perfect “festival” piece. I could draw people in because they connected with it immediately. They did not need to look too hard. I’m realizing that if I plan to sell more at festivals, I need more pieces that are not as experimental. I should save that stuff for illustrations that I do not print out. I am plan on doing more illustrations like the Lego Goes. It seems like a style that is worth exploring.
Lastly, one nice thing about these festivals is the comments you get from people. Many are really nice and appreciative which is great even if they don’t buy anything. Since I don’t plan on using the hard sell, I’ll accept the occasional positive comment even if they don’t open their wallet…