PAW 2019 day seven, 31st May, end of week one …

Better weather today but so much quieter and hardly any walkers passing for most of the day. The sun came out consistently from 3 onwards. In the morning a family friend Suzanne dropped by and then two walkers, one from Australia and the other a DAW (Dorset Art Weeks) artist popped in. The day was looking to be very quiet. In the afternoon I even got the guitar out to play a bit and also completed the “PAW studio in PAW 2019” piece too.

The main reason visitors came today was that they were passing and found me by accident – it is very touching that under these circumstances that people take a break in their walks. Also in the afternoon I cycled up to the car park,

where visitors are asked to park, to find very few cars there.

So visitor numbers in total today eventually grew to 17 giving a week one figure of 245 visitors and 19 dogs. Sales are ticking along consistently with card sales.

Art cards for today:

I completed the original art piece “PAW studio in PAW 2019” as it was warm enough to draw.

I also wore the new art clothing as it is so far, a great topic for conversation today from several visitors.

By the end of the afternoon the sun and shade made the studio look different and a photo from friend and visitor Simon of the foxglove growing outside the studio.

I was asked by a fellow PAW artist what was my target for this year? My answer really is just see who comes, what they buy and to enjoy making art and have others try too.

This is clearly different from some PAW artists whose art is the main source of their earnings, but as long as I enjoy my art making, others care to visit and maybe buy some I am happy. So thanks to all my visitors this week and I look forward to seeing all this when come over the next nine days.

PAW 2019 day six

A drier forecast but the steady breeze meant it never fully cleared up here. Some sun, but sea mist kept intervening. 26 visitors today so up to 228 total. A mix of walking family groups, friends and locals. Today saw some more activity at the art table and I decided it was too windy for PAW studio picture so I started a new art overall instead.

But first, Simon’s wooden shaker boxes – Simon is the Head Gardener at Encombe and also turns his hand to crafts, in the past he has framed pictures. The shaker boxes he as making last year and we sold some through my studio in PAW. This year he has expanded the range of models. These can be bought for by cash or card via Andy (me).

Three children drew cards today:

The last done by Joe while sat next to me, his Mum and sister watching us. Anne took a picture from behind of the two artists at work.

This is what Art is about – fun and sharing whatever age.

I was wearing my Artisans on the Beach 2018 overalls for those who have not seen them before. Here are the stages of the development of my new #ArtForFun overalls.

So another good day of chat with visitors and 6 days in I am finding every day tiring but very rewarding.

PAW 2019 day five

The weather turned… my first visitors this morning were Becky and friend with their children who all produced artcards and enthusiastically tucked into the biscuits on offer. They came while the weather was windy but dry.

Not long after they departed (but hopefully after they were back in the car) the weather moved in, misty at first then damp, then very wet indeed. At this point you resign yourself to the fact that you are unlikely to see many visitors and in previous PAWs this has been the case but no, visitors arrive in the horizontal gusts of rain.

As the afternoon drew on the weather eased to be misty but much drier. By five pm I had seen 21 visitors a total that yet again came as a great surprise to me. This being my third year links to other events were made by several people and return visitors to the studio too.

After normal hours we hosted a social event for the Swanage and Wareham Depression Support groups that I am a member of and the charity that any refreshment monies go to support. During the evening the option is given to view the art and eight chose to do so. So a total for the day of 29.

Stunningly, five days in and I have met 202 visitors. In 2017 I had 250 visitors across the entire PAW, in 2018 this rose to 276. I am now intrigued to what the 2019 total might end up at, but to be honest it doesn’t matter as I am here to share my art and why I do it with anyone who wishes to visit.

So a successful day yet again – today on a number of occasions visitors found me dozing / asleep wrapped up in the studio after a particularly bad case of insomnia last night. I hope tonight sleep will not elude me. The icing on the cake, on checking the Purbeck Artisan Yard sales records for the day I have sold a framed print there today as well.

I still haven’t told you about the birch boxes, it will happen… but apart from admiring comments I have yet to sell any.

So good night and a drier Thursday beckons.

PAW 2019 day four

Yesterday I apologise to my morning visitors whose artcards I failed to post as photographed on another device so let’s right that first.

Olly who visited on Sunday wanted to set a pose for my drawing mannequin – proof that I haven’t changed it yet, nor has anyone else.

So Tuesday, the bank holiday has passed what would today bring? 29 visitors and no international ones today with the furthest being a lady from London. There was more buying of cards today and those seasonal Santa ones especially. Also a print of Sailing from Chapman’s Pool. No art cards completed today which was a shame. Before the first visitors today I added to “PAW studio in PAW 2019” and added the undergrowth and now have the leaves to do.

I have been very encouraged today in the number of people asking where my work is stocked, it is not the case yet but an idea going forward. I had risen at 5 this morning as wide awake – visitors around 3 pm found me asleep and left me to it, but I came to very quickly.

I am finding the visitor numbers so far actually stunning, so 173 in four days so far. Sales are also encouraging across the range of my work.

PAW 2019 Day Three

So, after I posted yesterday one of my friends who visited posted about his visit on Facebook and I have thanked him already but felt very humbled to be honest.

So a new day, the forecast overcast and maybe sunny spells but a stronger westerly breeze. The morning was very quiet until a family group visited taking my pre midday total to 7. I had finished off the colour I had started yesterday afternoon on my “A rooftop view…” piece. I mounted the picture and it is now in the studio on sale.

I have previously thought about doing some pieces based on my PAW studio to go alongside “PAW studio in the snow”. So I sat and drew the start of “PAW studio in PAW 2019”. I did the line work but have not worked on the undergrowth or leaves yet. I then sat at the art activity table and added colour. It now awaits a new day to work on the planting.

A late lunch saw afternoon numbers increase dramatically and some takers for the art table. Today also saw an increase in the number of dogs visiting, all but one accepted a treat.

Sales today were very limited, disappointing maybe but realistically many people were walkers and I just enjoyed talking about my story, the art, where we live …

By the end of the day that slow morning was eclipsed totally with a daily total of 46 visitors and 11 dogs. A recount of yesterday’s figures shown my total to date is 144 visitors and 15 dogs. This compares to 8 days plus of visitors last year.

The sales are now behind last year’s total for the bank holiday but this is because last year I sold two originals in the first weekend. It really doesn’t matter in comparison to the sheer numbers so far and the art table popularity, also the chance to chat about my art journey thus far.

I was going to mention more about the wooden boxes today but forgot so will take some pictures tomorrow to show you what I am talking about.

PAW 2019 Day Two

A day of changeable weather and lots of friends. We started the day with cloudy overcast and a fresh breeze when Dave Furmage our Purbeck morning bike cycle mechanic dropped by for a coffee, chat and visit. Closely followed by two other couples we know and some that we don’t. The weather started to pick up then more friends arrived and two – Simon and Olly did a drawing using the free art activity table.

Diane, one of our friends bought some homemade cake for Anne and I too. I got to split my time between friends and new visitors plus Simon, the estate Head Gardener who brought up some of his wooden boxes – more details about here tomorrow that I shall stock like last year.

A couple drive up who have previously become aware of my work at the Purbeck Artisan Yard, they came to invest and took an A3 print of the Hillview drive in,pen and ink plus a Ready to Row print.

My next sale was a set of all six of the Santa Over Purbeck series. After my lunch at around 2 the sea mist was starting to draw in and the offer of hot drinks tempted some, also the lure of the pens worked and some more art cards were done but I did not get to record these ones. During the afternoon today’s international visitor came from India. By the end of the afternoon more card sales and 36 visitors. Including the two prep days I have now had 97 visitors. Also sales for today reached £85 and the card machine has been doing sterling work once people walk over nearer to the house so I can pick up the WiFi signal. Total sales so far stand at £182 including some cards sold at Rollington today.

Last year’s figures in my old notebook at the same point last year were:

Visitors = 40

Sales = £127

By the end of the day the sea mist was truly in and it was much cooler.

PAW 2019 Day one

Today the art weeks started for real. Lots of visitors, many going past for walks and not even aware of the art weeks so introduced the idea to them. More framing this morning and after a few visitors remembered labelling and prices on work so made labels for all pieces so far. Visitors came from Swanage to SAN Jose and Berkeley in California (not today). Two dog visitors today.

So in total today 50 visitors (plus 11 unofficial from last two days makes 61 so far). Today’s biggest sellers were Christmas cards! Corfe Castle sold the most, but Kimmeridge and Studland for 2019 cards sold as well.

First pic is one Charlotte Heath from PAW trustees took of me at the private view last night.

I made a real time video of walking up the drive and around the “Garage gallery” and around the “studio”.

It does go on a while and that’s without studying the pictures in detail, so remember to add in time for refreshments to regain energy afterwards.

T’was the day before PAW

Yes, I slept well and got up later today. So what kept me busy today? At the start of the morning about 08.30 the pictures were on the floor of the studio. I put a sign out to say visitors were welcome but I was still preparing the studio. I also put out my original craft show table banner between two trees so people passing should be clear who I am.

Into the studio which today as organising, framing, hanging… pieces of work. The wooden crates I was given by fellow artist Lisa Shockley yesterday look fab and have proved useful. The studio looks less cluttered than last year but there is still a lot in there. The sections roughly are on entry and clockwise around the room –

– card carousel

– Encombe, Kingston and countryside in pen and ink and colour pieces

– along the coast and then Swanage with some other places included I.e. new piece of Weymouth

– boating and boats of Swanage

– table will have pens and working on

– Santa over Purbeck as a link to Flight of fancy theme

– Redbubble Print on Demand pieces will feature.

Also in the garage end of the outbuilding will be:

– AndyKnillArt advertising materials inc. outfits

– Drystone wall pieces

– Make me an offer section.

During the day I had nine visitors, most from outside Purbeck, my first dog visitor and two sales of framed prints.

At 4.15 I packed up, got ready for and went to the Private View evening in my art bib and brace outfit. Duties on the soft drinks bar and car parking later. Eating and chatting in between.

Put up my last sign on the way home at the A351 and B3069 junction at the eastern end of Corfe Castle. Then feet up and relax a while.

Tomorrow it all starts for real with jobs in between visitors and just enjoy it.

It’s Thursday, we start Saturday …

So restless night and couldn’t get back to sleep so got up to do a distraction activity, two hours later, seven mounts trimmed and seven prints framed. What a positive start to the day.

Then it as breakfast and a new job, important with visitors coming…cut the grass. I did 3/4 this morning.

So the front of the house looks better now. Breakfast, shower etc and then collect framing gear and off to Rollington Barn – the Art Weeks hq – reframe my original piece, helped out sorting labels and enjoyed a cuppa.

Mine is piece in wooden frame.

I got home and decided to ring two nearest The Range stores to see what frames they had in stock, this then became a trip out to a Dorchester, Bournemouth store didn’t answer on any of my three attempts. On route now about 12ish we realised we were hungry so nearest place with parking – McDonalds, a rare thing these days but managed to choose salad instead of chips.

Diet not completely shot to bits.

Then back through a range of country roads and what we call “tree tunnels” in our family, so tree therapy, I was not driving now as energy as lacking.

Home and time for some water and a large mug of tea, after which I was due to have a nap. A new surge of energy and I stayed up, prepped signs for village and started putting signs on track outside our drive. Two locals passing on a walk asked if they could see studio, I explained it was in development but they came in and we talked about the art and also local wildlife we both enjoy. Then a fellow artist who had offered me some wooden crates agreed to drop them in. We sat and talked art over more tea and watched the wildlife including the squirrel.

A bit more sign preparation then dinner followed by a walk into the village putting my signs up, then voting and a walk back through an off-road route back to ours.

Rest? No the last 1/4 of the grass was now dry so I completed that in about 30 mins. Now I am resting having slowed down, but what a constructive day.

Two preparation days remaining…

Today I was on duty at the Purbeck Artisan Yard. In my rough plans, I had finished with Rollington Barn my work is there ready for hanging, placing on racks etc.. The focus was to be a shelving unit I had been given in an artisan draw, help prep. building and add to my art bib and braces outfit, as well as welcome visitors and handle sales etc.

At breakfast I switched on Facebook to find an instruction that I was to paint the yard front door. This was met with dismay as I was already going in 90 minutes early to help with a task helping out signs around Wareham. Also I was dressed for a duty day in my original art overall.

I drove towards the yard slightly annoyed at this addition of extra tasks. On arrival this sign job was postponed as the other artisan had to be somewhere else volunteering earlier. Someone else meanwhile had offered to do the painting, I was very grateful.

I set up the shelving area using my top 10 card sellers (see older post) and then modified the design after some feedback. I now had two locations ready for PAW. We had a reasonable number of visitors and I spoke with all of them and dealt with sales as required.

The reference to the PAW theme allows inclusion of my #seasonal cards featuring a gentleman in a red suit with white trim. Also my two new designs for 2019.

The mental health aspect behind my art is very important to me and in fact has sparked a number of good discussions previously.

With numbers initially, then I reduced size of numbers, then I removed them altogether because they became the focus rather than the art. I will be interested to hear what feedback the display gets and if the cards sell.

I then decided to add more images of events I take part in on my newer art clothing. This went on to include PAW, Artisans on the Beach and the Purbeck Artisan Yard. At the time the PAW handprint looked in proportion, now looking at the image after a break from it I can see it is not and will require some additional work.

My wife brought lunch and company to chat, unfortunately she had to leave early as our son needs some support. I started a new piece based on a photo looking out of my son’s flat looking across some of the Swanage rooftops.

An afternoon phone call revealed the frame of my main piece at Rollington had fallen apart – a first for me, so tomorrow I will need to take a spare and reframe the picture at Rollington so it can be hung.

Then after my duty and before an evening meeting I was attending I put up a series of signs for PAW around Wareham leading to the yard.

A busy day as usual at the yard. Again, I now hope my yard work is PAW ready, I can at least revisit out of hours if required. Let’s see what tomorrow brings which will mainly focus on getting Open Studio 22 ready for 10 am Saturday May 25 and opening it up to the public.