Sunday, February 8, 2009

Off to see the Wizard

I leave for Philadelphia early tomorrow morning. It's always so exciting to get ready for a show, but The Buyer's Market of American Craft is my favorite. I get to see my regular buyers, meet new ones, hang out with other amazing artists and introduce my new work. Every time I do it (and this will be my 14th show) I feel totally honored to be there. I walk around and look at all the beautiful art and still can't believe they let me in. I am simply in awe to be among so many of the artists whose work I have admired for years. These are the people whose art you have probably bought, ogled and drooled over in stores near you. And because of BMAC and other handmade shows I am lucky enough to now count many of them among my friends. These wonderful people, all passionate, talented artists are a community a world away from my other friends, and I love being around them when I can. 
Artists lead solitary lives, we work alone much of the time and these shows are a rare chance to spend time with other people who do what we do, share our lifestyle. There is a shorthand we can use with each other, a language only other working artists can speak with us. Much as I love them, none of my other friends with 'normal' jobs can know what it's like to work at home, make so many decisions, wear so many hats every day to keep our businesses alive and thriving. None of them have stood on aching feet at a show and talked to buyers all day, had to set up and tear down a huge booth alone, designed a new catalog, had to figure out how price new work, design a display, deal with PR, bookkeeping, invoicing, managing a website, all the while keeping up with production and resisting the urge to waste hours of your workday on facebook. It's a singular life, it's a crazy hard, delightful, exciting, challenging life and I would never trade it for another. And these folks, my show friends, they get it. So the show is about more than networking and getting orders, it's my community. And I can't wait to get there!

3 comments:

CreativewithClay: Charan Sachar said...

Hi Pam,
Good to read your blog. I agree with you totally that we artists have a language of our own. Artists in general are so generous in sharing and we learn so much from each other. Shows are such a great opportunities to meet friends and dicsuss new work/techniques/ideas. Have fun!

Colleen MacDonald said...

You have described my world as an artist so well! I'm excited for your show and I can't wait to hear all about it when you return. Good luck and happy travels.

laurambamburak said...

Pam,

You totally deserve to be at BMAC, it would not be the same withoout you or your work, I am truly lucky to have such wonderful artists as part of my everyday life!

Laura Bamburak