First, sorry for such a long journal entry but for those of you who will show your work in a gallery someday, this might be useful...
So, my first gallery show went well. I was happy with the whole process and I have sold a few prints already - at least enough to cover the production costs which is great. The work will be up for another 2 and a half months so I may make a profit after all. Either way, I've certainly been bitten by the gallery bug and I'll be looking for more galleries to show my work in. Who knows, maybe I'll come to your country!
Here are the six images I showed:
I gave the gallery a list of about 20 artworks to choose from and they narrowed it down to these. I may have chosen differently but they are in the business of selling artwork so I didn't argue.
The owner asked for 'gallery wraps' which is the kind of artwork that wraps around the side with no frame. The work also had to be printed on canvas paper so I used theuntappedsource.com [link]
which is the company I always use for high quality digital printing. I believe they use a CANON printer which can print on canvas as wide as 40 inches.
I had never seen what my work looked like on canvas before so I set up a test print first:
It's hard to tell from my cheap digital camera shot but the colors came out great and I only had to make a few minor adjustments prior to printing full size.
Next, I needed the right tools:
On the top left is EcoShield Satin sealant which helps protect the color of the prints. It also protects the canvas against water damage. One problem with this product though is that it was very clumpy and it had to be strained and diluted.
On the top right is a Wagner HPLV spray gun to apply the coating.
You can also see an electric staple gun on the right and a canvas stretcher tool on the bottom. Both very useful.
Next came the stretcher bars:
These are pre cut. All you need to do is pick the size of the bar you need then put them together. I got them from stretcherbarwarehouse.com
There is some controversy over when to spray on the sealant and I decided it was best to do it prior to stretching. That's what I was doing here:
I went onto youtube to learn how to stretch canvas. It's a pretty straight forward process except for the edges where it can get a little difficult. I chose to cut the edge at a diagonal into two sides before I folded them. I didn't see that technique done anywhere else but it turned out the cleanest of all the methods I tried...
I did all this in my kitchen
I wish I had a workshop!
...and here they are...
The last thing I did was add a little stamp at the bottom with my logo. I cut it out of rubber and used acrylic paint.
Just when I thought the work was over, I had to ship these things somehow. The gallery is 1000 miles away so I couldn't drive them there myself. My only hope was to build a crate and FedEx them.
My dad is a woodworker so he built the crate for me. It ended up being over 100 pounds! The people at the FexEx store thought I was shipping the Ark of the Covenant or something!
In retrospect, I wish we would have used plastic sides to the crate with a wood frame. That would have made it a lot lighter (and cheaper to ship).
And lastly, here's a few shots from the show. I was chatting most of the time so I didn't get to snap too many pics but the two AmalgaMATE images are in the front room and the other 4 are in the back room. I included the original photos next to each piece since I know people like to see that.
Gallery Link: [link]