The beginning of June finds me in an exhausted heap after the completion of our first annual open studio here in Michigan. In early February, a small group of artists connected and decided to work together to create a new art tour, the Artz and Gardenz Studio Tour, here in the tourist area of Saugatuck, Holland and closely surrounding area. I'm happy to report that it was a huge success! We were blown away by the turnout on a perfectly beautiful Mothers' Day weekend! My studio was open here, as well as our garden on the roof of our underground home. We also had neighbors, Kay and Lee VerSchure selling their beautiful garden plants and herbs just outside the studio entrance. People wandered all over the yard and gardens, bought lots of pottery, and picked up some early garden plants as well. If the attendance this year was the baseline for the development of the tour, then I think it might become something big in the coming years; provided that it doesn't pour rain during the weekend, of course...that would kind of kill the garden wandering aspect. But I am thankful, joyful and excited to see where it leads.
Next thing up is my return to the world of art fairs. I've had trouble getting much work produced following the art tour. It seemed to sap my energy. But I do have some new work and some more in progress, so this weekend we will head out to Kalamazoo, MI. Bob has been busy revamping my display, and I am scrubbing down the tent walls and canopy today and hanging them to dry. Lots to do...pricing and packing pottery, collecting all the lighting/display/packaging supplies, triple-checking the double-checked checklist so I won't forget anything. Going to an art fair is like camping for the weekend, but your tent has to look like a living room. It's tough work, but I am looking forward to meeting lots of new patrons and fellow artists.
Here at the studio the days are finally sunny and breezy and the gardens are blooming. The windows are open so that I can hear all the birdsong from the surrounding woods. Just last week I found an oriole's nest, a silver-grey silken basket, hanging just outside the entrance to the studio. I'm gonna' take that as a good omen. It's going to be a great year.
All the best.