AATS24: Orders and Deliveries

Above: Display test in the kitchen.

Three Weeks to Go in the Fuzzy Front End

Today is the official gallery reception at Sebastopol Center for the Arts.

This isn’t the first: last Saturday there was also a preview reception at Gallery One in Petaluma. Instead of a hard start, there’s a fuzzy front end to the schedule of Art at the Source, composed of mixed deadlines and promotion sub-events.

More on both receptions (and other events) below:

(Previous link in this series: 25 April, In the Wings: Five weeks to Go, or Today?)

These posts tend to emphasize marketing and promotion over the creation of original work. Yet they are always integrated: in collecting photos from my Humdingers project, and thinking more deeply about their presentation and “who are these for?” the selection process is clearer, the ordering more sensible, and in at least this case, the title has changed, to Grafitti Generations.

Grafitti Generations Cover

The timing is less-than-stellar, I realize: the annual “Salute to American Grafitti” event is next weekend and it’s very very unlikely that I’ll have books on-hand to sample. The reality of a busy summer.

However, I’ve started getting nibbles on the “Click here to get updates” buttons so I know there is an audience for this book, these photos.

Slightly related, another summer-photography tentpole for me is Santa Rosa’s Peggy Sue Cruise. It occurs on the final Saturday of Art at the Source, so on June 8th I’ll be quick to close-up shop and roar over to Santa Rosa mid-event. The cover shot of Grafitti Generations was made during that cruise: during the multiple loops, I’ve often seen the show cars adding passengers, especially kids.

Preview Reception

Not Used for the Preview

For the single small print shown at the Gallery One preview, I’d planned to use a very easy-to-look-at one from The Caged Bouquet but as delivery-to-gallery day approached I realized: when presented without context, it’s just too easy for a viewer to interpret it as “attractive person looking attractive” which was not at all the point of the project nor of my broader post-teenaged photo-making.

Instead the same dancer is present in the background of a different photo with other cast members of the Ballet Naciónal de Cuba’s production of Giselle, along with interesting backlight, catholicism, memories, anticipation and motion. As someone who cares about narrative-like relationships within and between images, it’s better.

Actually Used for the Preview

I know some advisors may feel differently: more people might like the first one better in isolation, but pleasing the most idle casual eyes with colorful candy is not the goal. There’s no shortage of those kind of photos, I don’t need to contribute there.

Both photos, with context, are in the book.

Web Changes & Technicalities

See See pointed out some problems with the existing Jekyll “collections” method for organizing images – it jumbled-up her paintings on some versions of the Safari browser. I fixed it, and once I did, applied it to the book page here.

This new edition of collections not only works correctly on iPhone and iPad, it adds a rank option so that you can re-order the collection any way you want, not just by title or date.

Book Designs

The hardcover edition of Forgotten Signs has arrived, looks good. The printer didn’t offer a paper wrap half-cover, so I still have to design and print one on a different paper – having the physical books will make it straightforward to measure and fit. I hope.

As mentioned above, Grafitti Generations is in-flight, due back from the printer just a tiny bit late (2 days?) for the annual Grafitti-themed event. Looking on the bright side, maybe more people will drive to Sebastopol.

Minor Chaos: I very nearly forgot to order the CHAMPIONS books after the test prints! Fortunately I did a check of the stock in time or I’d have only four copies; I need to hold a couple aside, since there might an opportunity to get some to the team management after AatS (tbd).

Promo Cards

It should be obvious, but I carry these everywhere, give them away freely. I also carry a small package of thumbtacks, so they can be added to community bulletin boards and the like as I encounter them.

While the obvious venues for promotion are “art zones” like art centers, camera and art-supply stores, etc., I don’t really think they’re the best. If someone is already buying oil paint or lenses, they aren’t likely to buy artworks – they’re buying materials. They want to make things (or at least own the tools) themselves.

The more-likely audiences are people who are interested in the content of images: Giants fans, car show lovers, and their many friends.

One of the primary incentives for exhibiting at “Art at the Source,” for me, is to find and connect to audiences who really don’t care much about algorithms or print colors or Leica. I love these things, you might too. We are a narrow minority.

I’ve also posted the cards (err, pictures of them) on the socials in the past week, in as focused-audience a manner as I can.

Cards - the Other Kind

The RBF note cards have arrived, and look good.

A second set of art cards, with the working title of “Joker B’s” should also be ready before the studio days.

Arrived, and delivered to the gallery!

Reception this Afternoon: 11 May 2024

As I was leaving the gallery delivery someone trotted out from the back to catch me: “hey, that piece is really neat!”

Hope you visit the gallery and agree!

...is for horses.

See you at Studio 16B on June 1st.

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