My show season starts in late May when I set up my little table at the Tuesday night Ely market. I like to get my rhythm before the summer crowds and before my big shows.
Over the winter I designed a new booth layout. I had Wade build the tables which have collapsible legs. Then I had him make cherry frames to hang from the table tops. I can put anything I want in the frames. For now I have canvases printed.
I think it looks pretty darned spiffy.
My first big show was in Park Point, Duluth. Weather can be iffy on Park Point and this year was a doozy. We had a huge storm rip through that took down tents and damaged many more.
My tent was okay. I invested in a really strong tent after that first year of doing outdoor shows. It takes more time to set it up and take it down, but I didn't have the fate of my neighbors.
On Sunday we had sustained winds of 25 mph with gusts up to 40. My tent neighbor was a potter. She took her tent down on Sunday and then hung onto her displays all day. You see I squished my curtains in so that they weren't catching the wind quite so much.
I also tied my busts to the shelves and didn't put anything on the top shelf.
We'd hear a wind gust and then a crash. That sick feeling in your stomach when you know a potter just lost some work.
Weather is the biggest stress at any show. Storms that can take down whole tents, rain that keeps the crowds away, wind (the worst), heat, cold, you name it. You have to be prepared.
Thankfully Grand Marais had perfect weather. The challenge here is that we are set up on pavement. Steve took 5-gallon buckets and filled them with rocks to hold down the tent.
Bad weather would certainly take out the tents in that situation. And it has happened where tents and artwork end up in Lake Superior.
I really like the Grand Marais show. It's small and I usually have to worry about keeping warm instead of cool. That's a problem I'd rather have any day of the week!
I love the restaurants in Grand Marais. My tent was across the street from the Gunflint Tavern. I could smell their delicious food all day.
This sculpture was the view in front of my tent.
My next show is Bayfield, Wisconsin. Bayfield is also on Lake Superior. I guess I like these shows because they are close to home and if I get too hot, I can jump in the lake. Bracingly refreshing!
CLICK HERE to see my show schedule. I'd love to see you out there!