“As a first time exhibitor, Artexpo SOLO proved to be a worthwhile experience for me for many reasons. The first day of the show, I felt kind of like a kid in candy store, surrounded by things that I love—art. The wealth and breadth of talent was astonishing as creativity bounced off the walls, one booth more intriguing than the next. If I had enough money I would adorn every room of my house with a piece from each artist. I spent a lot of time talking to other artists, sharing stories of life, our successes and struggles. I truly felt I was among kindred spirits, who support, applaud and mentor each other. At a venue with the potential to be completely overwhelming and intimidating, it was the generosity of my fellow artists that made me feel at ease and welcome.
I am happy to say I sold 12 original paintings, four giclees prints, and a many of my printed silk scarves. When I came to the show, I didn’t have any prints or plans to do any, but in listening to the advice of other artists and a printing company called Squirt Printing, I decided it was a good idea to offer a few paintings in print. This proved to be the right decision and had I done it from the beginning of the show, I would have sold even more. I am still in the midst of post show activity as well. For my first time at expo, I rate this show as being an enormous success for me, and I believe when I look back ten years from now it will prove to be a defining moment in my career.
My success was not only in my sales, but in connecting with other people. People of all ages came into my booth, said they loved my work, told me which paintings they liked best and how it reminded them of something in their own lives. Many people stopped and talked to me about peace and cheered me for bringing it into the open. One lady told me how she got arrested in the 60’s outside Sak’s for protesting the war, and she was glad to see the peace sign again. Teenagers, many of them doning the peace sign themselves, came to my booth, smiling and picking out the paintings they would like to have. A man, who made two purchases, told me he walked the entire show and only stopped at two booths, mine being one of them. Another young girl, an artist herself, said “you have the best work in this whole show… by far.” I gave her two pins and told her she made my day. Later, she came back with her parents, who also loved my work and bought their daughter a painting. Her mother said, through teary eyes, my work overwhelmed her. These are the reasons I paint–to touch another human being without saying a word, to hope my paintings will speak to their souls. When this happens, my work comes full circle and I feel I have achieved ultimate success. Artexpo afforded me this opportunity because there is no other place where so many people from so many different walks of life come together for one reason–to enjoy art!
I can’t wait until next year’s expo, where I will be presenting my next series, “Love Really is All You Need.” –Suzan Waldinger
See more of Suzan’s work at suzanwaldinger.com