jump to navigation

Let’s play “Hunt the Bacon!” February 19, 2010

Posted by Deb Kosiba in Convention Art Shows.
Can you find the Stained Glass Bacon?

Don't Do This

Capricon was this past weekend. It was the second show I have displayed my stained glass in and I made just about every amateur mistake there is.  So once again, you  get to learn how to do it right from looking at how I did it wong.

Pre-plan your display

Have a look at the photo.  Would you believe I spent a lot of time working on the layout of my display?  No?  Sadly, I did, but failed to document it in any way. This meant that I had nothing to reference when it was time to hang the art.

Before WindyCon, in November, I took photos of the layout before I packed it to go to the convention.  But I didn’t print it out, and trying to squint at the tiny screen on my camera was next to useless.

What I used to do, back when I was doing jewelry, was draw the layout on a piece of paper, and that seemed to work really well.  Taking photos may seem more hi-tech and therefore better, but I think I may go back to drawing them by hand.

Looking past your work

WindyCon and Capricon use the same grid system, you can see the grid lines in the background. And since I work in stained glass, you can see the grid lines through some of my pieces.  Another one of the artists, Moira of Moira Coon’s Shinies, solved this problem by hanging her pieces on giant gilded picture frames with velvet backing.  The frame hangs on the grid, hiding the distracting lines, and then her pieces are hung on the frame.

I may go this route for the suncatchers, which are fairly small.  But some of my larger pieces would require excessively large frames and I haven’t decided if I want to deal with display materials that big.  If I did though, the effect would be dramatic.

Gotta getcha some elbow room

On the left and right of my display, you will see grid “wings” on each end of the table.  What you won’t see is any art on those wings.  Why not?  No particular reason.  I thought it would all fit on the back wall of the bay.  And it did, sort of, in a very cramped way.

I didn’t come to the realization that it would be too tight until I had 2 pieces left to hang and had to figure out where to squeeze them in.  I had two choices, cram them in somewhere, or re-arrange the whole display and gain more room by using those wings.  But I still had to finish my paperwork and I had less than an hour left to set up my dealer’s table when I was done with hanging the art.  So I got out the ‘ol shoehorn and wedged them in.

Big mistake

The first problem is that the whole display looks crowded.  There is no opportunity for the eye to rest on any individual piece. This reduces the  chance that someone will really “see” a piece and fall in love with it.

The second problem was that I had heard there was some confusion about which bid sheet went with which piece.  Is it the bid sheet next to the piece or under it?  Can’t tell without reading all the neighboring bid sheets and picking the one with the most likely name.

Fortunately, the pieces had clear names like “Dragon Head Suncatcher” or “UFO Suncatcher”  but it’s no excuse for making it hard for the potential buyer.

The third problem brings us to the title of this post.

Where’s the bacon?

Somewhere on that wall is a suncatcher shaped like a piece of bacon.  I posted about it when I made the piece. I tweeted about it.  I told people about it at the con.

Everyone said “That’s really cool!  It will go to auction for sure!”

It didn’t sell.

And after the con, several people told me they specifically looked for the bacon and couldn’t find it.

That’s right, there were people at the convention who knew about the bacon, were interested in buying the bacon, but didn’t because they couldn’t find the bacon.

Look again.  It’s at eye level (or my eye level anyway) up and to the left of the green Celtic knot in the center.  Still can’t see it?  I don’t blame you.  And I don’t blame anyone else but myself for it not selling either.

Lessons learned

– Take your time and plan your layout.  If you don’t know  how much space you will have to work with, contact the art show and they will be happy to describe their display setup.  Document your layout clearly so there will be fewer surprises when you go to hang it at the convention.

– Spend some extra time working on how your pieces will be displayed.  Are you just going to hang it on the grid or peg-board or do you want to make some kind of frame or background for your art?

– Spread out your work.  Even if it means paying for an extra panel, it will make the layout more pleasant and will help boost your sales.

If you want to show off your 3D SF&F Art display, please contact me.  I would love to have you write a post about how your display came together, how you decided on your layout, or how you made or found your props.



1. Capricon 30 Report « Seward Street Studios - February 21, 2010

[…] It was the second time I had the stained glass at a convention, so I’m still learning what works and what doesn’t work for my display.  Mostly what doesn’t.  Lets see if you can Find the Bacon […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: