- Housing – it’s great to be in a nice hotel. It’s better if they are all in one or two hotels, rather than spread out. If they are not within walking distance, they have to figure out how to get back and forth to the event. One more thing to worry about. Some events place artists with hosts in their homes. This helps with costs, but can be difficult for the artists. The hosts often expect the artist to spend time with them and we just don't have the energy to do that and be at the festival all day. I personally prefer to stay at a hotel, so I can decompress at the end of the day.
- Breakfast onsite – some of the hotels do not offer any breakfast, so if that’s the case, it’s nice to have an artist’s tent or oasis where we can get coffee and something to eat before we start. Otherwise we have to spend time looking for food and then pay out of our pocket to eat.
- Artist’s Welcome Dinner – many events will arrange either a dinner at the beginning or end of the event. The beginning (like the Thursday night before the event) usually works well. Most artists arrive in the day and want to connect with each other and socialize a bit. Once they hit the streets, they don’t really have a lot of time to talk to each other.
- Providing tempera, chalk, pans, brushes, rollers – not all events do this, but for the artists flying in, it is nice to know about a week ahead if they need to bring their own or not. What kind of chalk is being provided? Box of 24 or 48? Brand? It all effects how well we can execute our art.
- Getting from the airport to the hotels & to the site – Some events make up a spread sheet ahead with all this info on Google so the artists and event people all have access and know who is staying where. This makes it easier for the ones with cars to help with rides.
- Parking at the hotel and event - Provide a detailed map of where to park, what it will cost, if there are passes for the artists, etc.
- Awards, Competition & Stipends – Most of the artists who do this really don’t like competitions. They’d rather have the money spread out among the artists. An event could still give a couple of awards, but not money. That’s the way they do it in Germany, and it works well. For example, they have 500 euros for European artists, and 1,500 euros for the artists traveling from the US or Mexico. They use it to buy their travel (plane, car, train), and whatever they don’t spend is their fee, plus tips at the event. The event takes care of the hotel and all food.
- People's Choice Award - this always sounds like a great idea, but making sure that a local doesn't bring in all their family to vote, or someone doesn't "steal" votes (yes, it happens), it's difficult to make this fair.
- Fewer/Better artists – this is something I seem to constantly be talking to events about, that sometimes less is more. If you have x dollars, and 25 artists, each artist gets a decent amount, and you get some really great art. If you have x dollars and 50 artists, each artist gets half as much. You will have more art, but you won’t attract the best, plus it also spreads the tips out farther.
- Artist's Liason - Designate a staff member or volunteer to be the go to for all questions that the artists might have before, during and after the event.
- Artist on the Committee - Have at least one artist who actively participates in the festival on your committee. They are a great resource for feedback on what the artists want and need.
- Promote the artists – each artist should have a picture, bio and link to their website on your website. Promote them on social media as the event approaches. They will share and spread the post, helping you to reach a wider audience.
Treat Your Artists Right
The main reasons the artists do street painting events is for exposure and to travel and create art with other artists. A few do it for a living too, but the majority do not. So if you can make the artists feel special, it goes a long way to bringing good artists back each year. Happy artists make great art.
This past weekend, the street painting festival I attended experienced a bad rain out. I have to say, I have only had a bad rain out about 2 other times in 15 years of street painting, so it doesn’t happen a lot. But it will happen occasionally, and every event should have a back up plan in place and share it with the artists ahead.
Back up plans for bad weather should include some of these items:
The bottom line is prepare for the worst, hope for the best. One of the best events that is prepared for inclement weather I've attended is Chalktoberfest in Marietta, Georgia. One year we had three storms/rains come through in two days, yet we were able to have finished art at the end of the day on Sunday, because of the preparation and planning.
The FIRST book of its kind to tell the history of pavement art.
From its origins in pre-history to the Victorians, Edwardians and the present day, this new book will cover it all. Author Philip Battle decided to crowd fund this publication through Sponsume (See more at: http://www.sponsume.com/project/all-my-own-work-history-pavement-art#sthash.ihZDxgKT.dpuf). His goal is to raise £8,000 by October 6, 2014.
The title “ALL MY OWN WORK” is derived from the written description pavement artists used to describe their work to the public. The words were written in chalk on the pavement, in an effort to assure the public that the work was original and carried out by the artist present, rather than some impostor. Philip used the subtitle “A history of Pavement Art” because that’s all it can be. It’s not a definitive account, but rather the first volume, that touches on aspects of a forgotten world. To do justice to the entire history of pavement art would take three or four volumes! (something for the future perhaps.)
It includes the personal stories of individual artists, plucked from historical obscurity and told here for the very first time; like Alice G Colman (1874-1934), Britain’s first lady pavement artist. Liverpool’s own child pavement artist James William Carling (1857-1887) with the personal stories of many others, and the social context in which they lived. It brings the history right up to date with a description of modern day pavement art; festivals, events and the popularization of the art-form across the globe, with examples of 3D anamorphic art, and other modern trends. It also includes lots of rare photos of the artists, that have been painstakingly collected by Philip over the years.
This is your chance to be a part of street painting history and help a fellow skreever and street painter to publish this important document. Every street artist should own a copy!
We wish Philip, an ISPS Board Member, all the luck and hope you will support this important work.
Click here to get your copy - See more at: http://www.sponsume.com/project/all-my-own-work-history-pavement-art#sthash.ihZDxgKT.dpuf
Many artists struggle with this question. Someone wants to hire me? Ack! What should I charge? The biggest mistake is to throw out a quick number, without thinking it through.
First - ask for more details. Try to get them to email the details to you in written format. This gives you time to think and plan. And if they don't give you enough information, ask more questions.
Questions to ask:
Second - Decide on your hourly rate. What is your time worth? Do you have another job? What does it pay? Estimate the number of man hours it will take to complete, including your design time and all the time you use to do the business part (draft a quote, make a template, email a bill, etc.)
Third - Submit a written quote, either in an email format or fax. Spell out as much of the details as you can, so if there is a problem, it will be caught early, before you are committed. If you need to purchase tickets for travel, request at least half up front, so you don't get stuck with the cost.
Fourth - have the client sign and date the quote and return to you, as their approval of the costs. Keep all you emails and faxes until you are paid the full amount.
Fifth - The remaining amount should be paid once the art has been completed (rain or shine). Usually clients will give you a check at the event, or you can have money transferred electronically.
Do not undervalue your art or your time! You need to live and make a living just like everyone else. You may encounter some clients who think you will donate your time for free, but there are plenty of others out there that have a budget and will pay you. Who do you want to work for? If all of the artists charge fair prices for their time and art, we all win in the end.
How to treat a featured artist.
Many new chalk festivals want to have great street art at their events. So they set out to attract great artists, but go about it the wrong way. Event planners need to think of chalk artists/street painters in the same way that they think about any entertainment that they hire to enhance their event. Most events have a budget set aside for entertainment (bands, kids activities, etc.). Very few events can happen successfully without "entertainment." It's what attracts people to your event.
Once you see street painting as entertainment, it then makes sense to treat the chalk artists just like you would a band. Some events want a lot of featured artists, and others only want 2 or 3. It can work either way, just make sure that the artists you bring in are really good at chalk art, and will be good ambassadors of the art form and actually "entertain" while they are on site chalking. They should provide photos to be used for advertising the upcoming event, and be available for interviews with local press. They can also be brought in a day or two early to lead a street painting workshop for local artists.
Artists need to eat, too.
There are a couple of ways you can compensate chalk artists. One is to approach the artists, explain what you want and request a quote for their services. The quote should include travel costs, food and art materials. You also need to remember to include any street cleaning, barricades, security, tents, and other items in your costs when figuring out the total costs. Some events will arrange for lodging, since they get special discounts or donated rooms from local hotels in exchange for sponsorship acknowledgment.
Offer a Stipend.
Another option is to offer a stipend. A set amount would be given to every artist that is invited, and they can use the money for their travel, lodging, materials, food and whatever else is not covered by the event. This seems like the most "fair" way to do it, but it makes it harder to attract artists from father away, since their travel costs might be too high.
The event should include a light breakfast, coffee and juices, cold water, lunches and snacks each day. Most featured artists will bring their own supplies and chalk.
It's also nice when the event has a party or get together on the evening before the event for the artists and sponsors to get together and mingle. When the artists are working during the day, it is tough to have time to talk to everyone, and a pre-party is a great way for everyone to talk in a more relaxed atmosphere.
The event should either arrange the artist's flights or travel and pay for it, or advance money to the artist ahead (half up front is normal), so the artist can purchase their flights. The rest of the amount due should be paid at the end of the event directly to the artist.
What not to do?
Don't charge the artists fees to participate or for anything (t-shirts, programs, etc.). Street painting is a physically demanding art form, and the artists take it very seriously. Many started by donating many weekends to the art form. Asking them to "chip in" is like asking a volunteer at an event to pay for parking and a ticket to the event.
The important thing to remember is to treat your artists well if you want to grow your event into a premier art happening. An event that respects and treats the artists as special and talented guests will become known as a special event, and you will have your pick of great artists.
Together we are stronger
This was posted recently as 8 things we, as artists, can do to keep the arts as a way to be creative and make a living:
Trademarks, Patents and Copyrights
Protect Your Intellectual Property
(This content was taken from an email from Palm Beach State College)
Intellectual property (IP) is an idea of the mind that has commercial value. And just like other types of property it is an asset that needs to be protected from unauthorized use. IP can be an idea, an invention, an improvement, a piece of art.
The four ways to protect intellectual property are listed below, along with some additional resources...
PATENTS provide rights for up to 20 years for inventions in three broad categories:
COPYRIGHTS protect works of authorship, such as writings, music, and works of art that have been tangibly expressed. The Library of Congress registers copyrights which last the life of the author plus 50 years. Gone With The Wind (the book and the film), Beatles recordings, and video games are all works that are copyrighted.
TRADE SECRETS are information that companies keep secret to give them an advantage over their competitors. The formula for Coca-Cola is one of the most famous trade secrets.
The information above comes directly from The United States Patent and Trademark Office, which is an agency of the U.S. Department of Commerce, and an invaluable resource, click here to learn more.
* Protecting your IP internationally has many more considerations, contact an SBDC International Business Consultant for more information.
For no-cost business workshops and consulting with Certified Business Analysts, including Growth Acceleration Consultants and PTAC Specialists, contact the SBDC at 561-862-4726 or email us at email@example.com
As a street painter, we learn quickly to adapt to changing conditions (weather, surface, materials, etc.). We understand that those are things that make every experience different. But there are other conditions that we deal with that have to do with human behaviour.
Here is a link to a video interview with a local TV station about the damage a local group did to my chalk art at the Lake Worth Street Painting Festival in 2013. The group, which I will not name, did not like the subject matter in the art, which was chosen by the state of Florida for the Viva Florida 500 poster.
I was heckled, and then when I was done and took a break, they made noise, threw flyers around and then splattered the art with fake blood. When the local deputy on duty was notified of this, they said the art was "worthless" and it was a public street, so nothing could be done.
Really. Worthless? It was bad enough to have someone ignore the 2 1/2 days of work I voluntarily donated to the event, and the beauty of the art, but then to have the sheriff act as judge and jury and pass judgement, was heartbreaking.
Hopefully, we can educate the public about street painting as an art form.
Director of the International Street Painting Society, Jennifer is a chalk artist with 9 years of street painting experience, over 25 years of advertising experience and a lifetime of experience as an artist.