Going for the easy Monet
God I love a good pun, even a bad one now and then. I just returned from a plein air gig in a little town near Birmingham, Alabama. It was a nice event, just three days, and though it was brutal hot almost the whole time, I managed to get 4 paintings done. It was a fundraiser for a local garden that wanted to keep it's no gate fee policy going... a good cause. All in all it was decent, I was treated really well, put up in a super nice hotel for the week, I think in part because I was the only one to drive 20 hours round trip for this thing. I sold one and got picked up by a really nice gallery in B-ham called Loretta Goodwin and made a few new friends too boot. There was a small dilemma for me surrounding one issue that I missed simply because I didn't read the paper work. Which is a really valuable thing to do from the minute you get invited to or are considering any event.
Had I read the info when I first received it, I would have known that I was required to donate one painting, however, should there be additional sales, the full amount would go to the artist. I'm not big on donating a painting for anything but once I got there and understood the deal I thought, "Okay, what the heck". They provided a lovely gallery setting for us to hang our work in addition to the killer outside venue for the fund raiser. So... this is where it got interesting. I brought 6 paintings with me, none of which were of anything local... and people like a painting they can relate to. I wanted to create as many pieces of the garden as I could so that those who came to support said garden had something to relate to. I could put in a big one hoping the bidding would go up and cause a stir, or put in a medium sized one and hope someone would find that they couldn't live without the big one or even a small one (which I would get 100% of).
Now, I am a business person of sorts, if I'm driving nearly a thousand miles to do an event and staying for a week, I need to crack a sale. I was hoping for flowers but because of a big drought they were understocked in the flower department. My first painting was the top one, not to compare myself to Monet in any way but the scene certainly had a Giverny feel to it. Very picturesque and I thought if anything had a chance to sell this would be it. It's a 16x20. Then the geese, a nice little 9x12 that could be priced low enough and the geese were a popular fixture there. Up next was the romanticized moon over the lake painting above, another nearly sure thing. And finally there was the hydrangea painting which I did because I like to go for at least one complicated piece and the event was called Hydrangeas under the stars. So, maybe, someone from the Nocturnal Hydrangea Society would simply have to have it for their penthouse office. It was 20x20 and a two tripper.
Time to turn in, I thought, in the fantastical area of my brain which is apparently abnormally large, that I could turn in the big one with the flowers, it would go to auction and there would be a huge bidding battle between the NHS and the current Miss Alabama, everyone would be clapping and they would ask me to stand up and hit me with the spotlight and before another minute could pass, everyone would forego desert and run to snap up everything else I've done. But that never happens. So I turned in the smaller moonrise/sunset one and hoped for the best. In the end, the moon piece sold at auction and I used the Monet to get home.
Thank you. I'm here all week.