Episode 7 – Preparing For Open Studios

An open studio event is an event where the public can come see the artist and their artwork in their creative space!

It is a great opportunity to slow down, get fresh eyes on your work, and build a relationship with the past and future collectors. But what do you need to do in order to make the event the best that it can be?

Preparing For Open Studios

Audience – Get people in the door!

  • Use the power of word of mouth to spread the word
    • Family, friends, co-workers
    • And encourage them to tell their family, friends, and co-workers
  • Post on social media
    • Share the who what where when details, and communicate that it is free for the public and everyone is invited!
  • Send out an email newsletter to your community and past collectors 
  • Printed Media (this option requires more planning and prep)

Space – Create a positive experience!

  • Make sure the space is clean and organized. This doesn’t have to be anything crazy, but make sure your space looks professional, approachable, and safe to walk through. You don’t want visitors being scared that a stack of paintings are going to fall over or anything!
  • Create clear signage with prices, social media channels, payment options, etc. to avoid confusion and awkward conversations for the visitor 
  • Create a calming and welcoming environment that people will want to be in. The longer they stay, the longer they are looking at your artwork!
    • Offer beverages or snacks when applicable
    • Consider light relaxing music
    • BUT… be cautious with overly fragrant scents/food and music that could be distracting from the art itself. Noises and scenes can influence visitor’s interpretation of your artwork (good and bad)

Follow Up – Build the relationship after the event

  • Create promotional materials that visitors can take with them once they leave the studio. They will serve as both a practical source of information on how to best contact you as well as be a visual reminder of the wonderful time they had while visiting your creative space! 
    • Business cards
    • Stickers
    • Tokens of Appreciation 
    • Brochures
    • Etc.
  • Have materials on hand that help you gather information from your visitors to use down the road. This keeps the ball in your court which is a lot more reliable than trusting the visitor to email you the following week.
    • Newsletter sign up form or guestbook
    • Take notes about what specific visitors talk about so you can have a more meaningful follow up message

Then… Enjoy your open studio event! In the end, visitors are there to see you and your work so enjoy the event, learn from what you can improve on each time, and celebrate the creative journey that you are on!

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