sweet n cheap


my art dealer asked me to make some inexpensive work for the big fall opening at the gallery. i made four 8x8's of sweet kind of folk arty pieces. but honestly, i am thinking of not giving them to her and also taking the work i have in there, out. I just dont see how a 50% markup is justified in a gallery jam-packed with art representing 70+ artists. And i also dont think its wise to put a 50% markup on work this small. my big 40x40's? yes.

Back in the day, when an artist would have a solo show and the gallerista was on the phone working to get buyers in to look - i can see how a 50/50 split makes sense. i dont see how a commission that large is valid now with these giant shows. The situation i have found myself in now is i have to decide to make less so when she marks it up it wont be too pricey for its size to sell. and let me tell you what -smaller pieces are just as much work as the larger ones. the only difference is the amount of materials used.
More and more i am deciding i would rather go my own way, which means cobbling a living together by selling art out of my truck or on my online shops and doing the occasional illustration gig. I dont think i need the stamp of approval of being in a space designated as a place to buy art. so these little paintings will probably end up in my studio sale where i can offer them at a decent price. and if they dont sell? merry christmas somebody! ;-)


  1. rock on sista !

    beautiful work I love them both, especially all the nearly hidden details. Swap info up over here at Black Street and guess what ? you got my name... guess Missy D might get a gift from Trout xo Les Gang

  2. my brother spends much of his time contemplating the very same questions you are asking yourself. Finding the right price, the right gallery and hoping to not be given one painting, but an entire show. His less expensive paintings do sell faster, but after the galleries take their cut (and they can pay slowly) it's not worth his time. Also, do you worry it takes away from the value of your more expensive paintings? These look like your other work, and I doubt you really could do something considered "cheap". Go your own way! You can always return to gallery-world if the economy changes.

    (p.s. I love these)

  3. What a dilemma. Do you sell somewhere else besides Etsy? I think these are beautiful but I'm overely biased and underfunded.

  4. I LOVE these paintings!! I have your name so you will be getting a packet of goodies from Nova Scotia:) Not from Susan but me, Shelagh! Pop over and send me your address:)

  5. go
    your own way
    keep the gallery gig, too

    while you may not need a stamp of approval (i agree), you have one, so use it as best you can... plus the own way thing -- well, my two cents

    these are great(!) so, where's the others? :)

    × × ×


  6. So, how does one go about getting on your Christmas list?

    Do send me an e-mail via my blog.
    I've some wall space here in my storefront that is a dark piney forest green, with track lighting to showcase the art there. I have a HUGE painting on that wall which is getting delivered Friday. I would be thrilled to showcase your stuff....if it comes ready to hang and, the markup won't be 50% ....on what is essentially a consignment inventory ... more like 20-25%.

    I love your work, and I believe it would be very well received in my area.

  7. Uh, chickory - put me on your Christmas list. :) And put me on your sale list, too. I probably can't afford any of it, but I do like to drool over art. I love these pieces!!!!! xo Pam

  8. Get out of that arrangement. Its a back of the truck economy everywhere now.
    Average people like art, want art, not a scene. Its a survivalist's world now. Live like you can change the world and for you, it will change.

  9. Nina is right- and your work is simply beautiful. Fudge making has started early this year :) The Skunk is getting the first batch, but there will be more- I promise :)
    love to you too xo <3

  10. Go your own way .... (wait, is that Fleetwood Mac i hear, singing inside my head/)

  11. These are both lovely chickory and I can imagine the little paintings are more arduous to paint give their size.
    I wouldn't be too hasty in giving the art gallery away, maybe you could re-negotiate the commission as it is high...you can do both...

    You have your Etsy shop, and you can have your own gallery sales but the weather is not going to be that great soon so I'm thinking selling out of the back of your truck might not be the best way to go fro fall and Winter...just a thought sweet girl. xo ♥

  12. The expressed reasoning you have here is exactly why I am selling STINK the way I am. The price covers expenses and postage and a bit o coffee money.

  13. susan: i am VERY excited i drew your name! it will be so fun to find the most creative ways to meet the 15 mini-themes. im going to keep and eagle eye out for something in the forest. you really need something from the land herself.

    boxer: im sure your brother does think of these things. in this economy i just cannot see how those commissions are justified. i refused to sign a contract last year - why? because the dealer has 70+ ways to make money and i would only have one. in essence i would be signing a non compete contract against myself! i know she thinks i devalue what she has by selling the cards and prints at the farmers market. but those little saturday sales have made me more money than she has. real money. cash money. "walking around" money. not only that, i get to meet the buyers and build the relationship. and that is the gold standard of this bidness.

    shamy: well, cheer up under-funded. youre getting a good christmas ;-) -i already have something planned for the seattle summiteers. no i think Etsy is washed up -that is a post i need to write -i think what i should do is develop my own website and do the marketing work i need to do. i really want to set up a stock illustration page run on paypal. then starting ringing up my old illustration contacts.

    /t: the other two are at the studio -i scanned these on my way out of town and was anxious to leave to i will scan the others later. on the gallery...well i just dont want to do it anymore. and part of the reason is the space is a junkhouse now. okay...you wanna know the REAL reason?

    theres this artist, known as "cornbread" who makes these way primitive paintings of guinea hens with gigantic eyes.( you could see it very easily with a quick search) one day i walk into the gallery and there are all these bird paintings with giant eyes -on barnwood looking exactly like cornbreads stuff...only they arent cornbreads..they are by some woman making knock offs. so i tell the minion working there (not the dealer) do you realize these are rip offs of cornbreads well known style? she just shrugs. right then i am thinking of how to get out.

  14. fishy: how sweet. i will send you and email. i have a big studio sale in ATL first weekend in december. all the studios do. so i need as much inventory as i can get after that -i will send you some images and you can see what you think? these are small -only 8x8.

    i will send you something for christmas. send your address!

    yoborobo: oh now, we should trade! i showed your ornies for the day of the dead gig in pittsburg to betty and she wanted to buy them. there is a chance they will never make that trip if i keep showing them off. we love the orange ones best.

    nina: i agree. something in my spirit has changed over - to be as pared down and immediate as i can be. i want my work to go out and live in the world and it can happen more readily when i take off the trappings that inhibit that.

    i love this:

    "Live like you can change the world and for you, it will change."

    im working on it. thank you!

    mayden: do not send me fudge! send me the love instead. besides, you are with me as the days get cooler...a soft scarf to warm my titanium neck in rotty colors or freyas icey whites. love to you!

    faery: thanks -and yeah i do think thats the way to go. i just dont "believe" in it anymore. its lost meaning.

    dianne: you are right. winter is coming but i stored a few nuts. and of course, i make my actual living as a wife. so i am not going to starve or be put on the street. i am very lucky to have the love and support of a good man. however, a woman needs her own money to spend as she sees fit. and things that happen at chickory are my responsibility.

    dont worry. i am really going to work on my website this winter and market my butt off. but when spring comes around i will be back on that garden because i really believe that is an effort that is going to be critical in a few years. more important than art.

    walking man: it is a great feeling to be able to put an original in the hands of someone who is thrilled they can afford it. art has a job to do and so does poetry.

  15. I'm loving that second one! Gorgeous!

    I like the thought of you having your own site instead of Etsy. I think it would do well for you.

  16. right

    well, if a
    situation is killing you,
    then get the hell out

    -richard brautigan

    × × ×

  17. I love this new work. However you go about selling, your work brings beauty to life!

  18. Pleased you have the love and support of a good man chickory dear, it does make a difference...and yes a woman does need her own money.

    I have been doing a lot of sit-ups and ab crunches lately, have really felt the need to do so due to recent developements...some people are just a waste of time.

    You left a comment earlier when I posted one flower pic by accident, please come back over when you have time there are more flowers now. xo ♡

  19. Come read your thank you note at the Pond.

  20. aliceinparis: forgive me! i missed you somehow. welcome to chickory. i am very excited about our goodie exchange!

    dani: well its the logical next step. thank you so much. i like the blue one too.

    /t: its not killing me! you are so funny

    hilary: thank you so much. how the art biz going these days?

    dianne: i told you! turn that heartache into abs of steel! worked for me. long long time ago, when suffering from a broken heart, everytime i felt like crying instead i did the ab work. amazing transformation. you really cannot cry and crunch at the same time. okay -i'll be over shortly.

    boxer: okay okay okay

    fishy: it was awesome! happy 100th!

  21. I sure enjoy your work. I don't like most modern stuff, but this isn't quite that I don't think? Then again, I am a known philistine. Or, is that a pilsner?


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