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question asked of me that I have never heard before!

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  • question asked of me that I have never heard before!

    I'm gonna gripe for just a moment.

    I've been an artist and gallery owner at this location for over 14 years, and many years before in other locations. I feel like I am professional and work hard to present a true working studio atmosphere as well as presentation of original, curated artwork in the gallery. I also display works here representing about 150 professional artists from many parts of the US some of whom have reputations world wide, have books published about them, or masters degrees in their field, or at the very least decades of experience.

    Some of the "usual" questions when folks wander in are things like "did you make all of this stuff yourself?" or "how do people find you" or even "I've been saving my article about you in Southern Living Magazine for 2 years just to come see you". I'm used to those questions and have patterned responses for them all.

    My point in this is today, someone got the prize for a new question that I have never been asked before, and honestly stumped me....wait for it....

    "I brought my son (glancing at 9 year old boy in a baseball cap and baggy shorts with pride) up here from Atlanta, because he wants to know if you can sell his chicken art for him?"

    ok, I really didn't know how to politely answer her and not do serious damage to the child......I just looked at him and asked him if he had a web site. He said, "no", and walked off.

    I'm not sure what to expect next.
    I may have to get a tazer.
    Christina
    Steve

  • #2
    Re: question asked of me that I have never heard before!

    DUHHHHH??????? What's "CHICKEN ART"? Almost afraid to ask....had a rooster once that left his "art" all over the yard.

    Al

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    • #3
      Re: question asked of me that I have never heard before!

      I read this and think..maybe the kid does drawings or something of chickens? There is a fella online that does just chicken paintings. And there are a few children artists out there that have made names for themselves already.

      If they return how about just asking for a few samples? Even if you 'dont have room' or 'not the style your looking for' you can bolster his creativenes?

      M.

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      • #4
        Re: question asked of me that I have never heard before!

        As I am cracking up over Al's rooster, I like Marci's idea.I don't think you would do serious damage to the boy unless you beat him with his chicken art. Maybe this kid has something real good going on.
        My ETSY shop:
        https://www.etsy.com/shop/WoodforddellDesigns

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        • #5
          Re: question asked of me that I have never heard before!

          You looked at the kid????

          I would have stared at the Mother with open mouth, raised eybrows and down turn corners to my mouth ... and then I would have broken out laughing!

          One of my favorite quotes is from Robert Heinlien, a 1945-1980 science fiction writer ....

          NEVER under estimate the stupidity of humanity.

          I think it fits here.

          Susan
          Lora

          Art Designs Studio: https://www.artdesignsstudio.com/
          LSIrish.com: https://www.lsirish.com/
          CarvingPatterns.com: https://www.carvingpatterns.com/

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          • #6
            Re: question asked of me that I have never heard before!

            Sounds like another one of those "chicken outfits" to me!
            "Lif iz lik a box "o" choc lets, ya nevr kno whut yull git!"

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            • #7
              Re: question asked of me that I have never heard before!

              Marci, maybe the kid covers the chicken house floor with freezer paper and then puts out pans of paint. After school he has a finished piece of art with little 3-d accents that include his chickens DNA.

              Susan
              Lora

              Art Designs Studio: https://www.artdesignsstudio.com/
              LSIrish.com: https://www.lsirish.com/
              CarvingPatterns.com: https://www.carvingpatterns.com/

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: question asked of me that I have never heard before!

                ................Maybe he wanted you to sell his chicken who's name was ..........."ARTHUR"...........
                Sorry just couldn't resist that one..........

                Wayne
                If you're looking for me, you'll find me in a pile of wood chips somewhere...

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                • #9
                  Re: question asked of me that I have never heard before!

                  Well, there might have been another way, or there could still be another way. The key, was you stated you did not want to discourage any budding artist type. My response may have been, " do you have a sample of your chicken art, that I can see"? If they say "no", respond by saying could you bring me a representative piece"? or better yet, "send me a photo". If they say yes, or if they send a photo; there are several ways to respond. If it's really neat stuff you'll know what to do, but if its "crap", tell them that they should get a web site and give the "art" some exposure, and subject it to feedback.

                  We all know of unusual stuff that is created by the most unusual folks, and "catches on". How about that lady who makes jewerly out of dried, coated chicken poop? I've seen that one featured on TV and in articles. Not to mention some of what I consider really crap passing for "art". What's one persons crap is anothers fine art.

                  Tom H
                  http://beginnerscarvingcorner.blogspot.com/

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                  • #10
                    Re: question asked of me that I have never heard before!

                    You shouldn't make fun of new trends. I'm sure the day the first woodcarver showed up they also laughed. Don't believe me? Then just take your work to a recognized gallery and watch the reaction. You'll probably find that "Chicken" art and woodcarving have a lot in common.

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                    • #11
                      Re: question asked of me that I have never heard before!

                      Thor, What happened after the boy walked away?? Did his mom ask questions? Offer any samples? Give any details? How did the whole thing end??

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: question asked of me that I have never heard before!

                        I'm afraid some of you are missing my point.
                        As a follow up, I did proceed and tell the "mom" that I receive about 500 inquiries from artists to be in the gallery each year, and that it is a very competitive field. I told her, and the little kid as he wandered by a few times, that I need to see a resume, an artist statement, a biography, and a portfolio in order to apply. Furthermore, I am already working with a lot of artists during a very trying time for the economy and am not taking applications right now.
                        I also do not work through representatives of artists, but only with artists themselves....therefore, they must be able to communicate and sign their name on paper and develop a body of work in order to work with me, or for me to represent and promote their work.

                        In what world, would I want to work with a 9 year old boy, or rather his mom who is setting him up for exploitation or failure, or at the very least disappointment, when there are so many real professionals out there?

                        I'm not the one who might have disappointed the little boy. His mom was.

                        Unfortunately, as an artist, that woman put me and my work and my profession on the level of her son's accomplishments. I still think I should be able to tazer her.

                        Christina
                        Steve

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                        • #13
                          Re: question asked of me that I have never heard before!

                          Sadly, Thor, I believe your experience is more common place than you may realize. We often recieve inquiries to our gallery that are obviously inappropriate considering what is being submitted as compared to what we carry and compared to the quality of artists we represent. But some new budding genius is just sure that their watercolor cartoon dogs with angel wings is exactly what we must have ... The tighter the economy becomes the more bombed we are by such submissions.

                          I see the son's reaction as the most telling and I think that is what you are conveying in your tale. His wandering around the shop, uninterested in what his Mother is saying. He seems to distance himself from her desires. I think that perhaps you did the boy a great favor by showing his Mom the reality of the art world.

                          It's not that I don't believe that children can not create great art. They can and it often is featured in children's books. But if my son's art was that good I would have had samples in hand before I ever opened my mouth. Showing is so much better than telling.

                          I am reminded of one particular Art in the Park show where a man talked AT me for ten minutes about how his five year old neice did better artwork with her crayons and he was proud to decorate his frig with her masterpieces and why wouldn't I share with him how I executed my paintings so he could go home and give her my techniques ... to put me out of buisness.

                          Very sad for the young boy.

                          Susan
                          Lora

                          Art Designs Studio: https://www.artdesignsstudio.com/
                          LSIrish.com: https://www.lsirish.com/
                          CarvingPatterns.com: https://www.carvingpatterns.com/

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: question asked of me that I have never heard before!

                            Yes Susan, I know you understand. For years, visitors have felt compelled to tell us of their 12 year old niece, or middle school age daughter who is such a fine artist, that they really must bring them up here for us to meet them.
                            I would really rather meet art collectors than a 12 year old with no means to purchase artwork.

                            I have always been polite to folks like that, but honestly, they are wasting my time, and have no idea that they are really pretty insulting to my career to only find a common denominator between my occupation and a 12 year old. It is exactly like meeting a lawyer and trying to tell them a story about a kid who likes to argue with everyone.

                            Honestly, I'm just raving, because it was such a weird scenario with someone who had no idea how strange she sounded from my perspective. Oh, mom didn't buy anything or have any questions about any of the artwork in the gallery at all either. She didn't even seem to notice that I was carving at my work bench while she was speaking to me. Just another day of being exposed to the public really.
                            Steve

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                            • #15
                              Re: question asked of me that I have never heard before!

                              Big Grin ... I am often surprised at how people can be totally oblivious to their surroundings, situation and to reality. I doubt that the woman ever considered your time, your qualifications or your status in your field. You and your gallery probably never even was part of her reality at that moment.

                              We counsel all of the artists that make inquires about joining our gallery to 'do their homework' first.

                              Since we specialize in pure breed dog art that includes:

                              Who are their customers? Pet owners, kennels, vet offices or just speculation?

                              How many people own the dog they intend to paint - how big is their potential clientele?

                              How much time are they willing to put in going to shows and kennel club meetings to promote themselves and their art?

                              How much can their family afford to invest in their art, reproduction costs and marketing?

                              What are they expecting in return?

                              Most new print artists are agasted that we take a percentage of their retail price as our fees. They believe that they are going to market their prints themselves at $50 each and that we should add our fees on top of that. So they think they will be selling at $50 with us trying to market the same print at $75 .... Duh!

                              Then they often pick some extremely obsure breed thinking that since the breed is so small there will be no competion and their's will be the only print. They don't think out that if there are only 300 breeder that perhaps 10% of them buy art and maybe 10% of them will like their art so they will have a grand total of 3 possible patrons.

                              They sure don't realize that when I say to Mike "I want to go to press" I am talking in the thousands of dollars per painting. If they go Giclee they don't think out that a landed production price of $35 per print means a retail price starting at $150 or that there are no customers that are willing to pay that price for an 8" x 11" piece of paper unless it's signed by Robert Bateman.

                              So ... we take on a new artist who seems to have done his homework. He has a beautiful large print of a bulldog sitting on a Harley. It's glorious!!!! We do all the intake work, send the artist agreements and he writes us asking how many hundred prints do we want in house ... ? Hundreds???? And if we think 3000 will be enough prints to last out six months ?????

                              So we write back and gently ask him if he really thinks there are 3000 people who own pure breed bulldogs and ride Harleys, all of whom are art buyers ?????

                              Susan
                              Lora

                              Art Designs Studio: https://www.artdesignsstudio.com/
                              LSIrish.com: https://www.lsirish.com/
                              CarvingPatterns.com: https://www.carvingpatterns.com/

                              Comment

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