Awake early,a positive dream about teaching and letting go,what does today hold?
A yard day ..
In May 2016 I explored the back streets of Wareham to find the Purbeck Artisan Yard as I wanted to find some art by Lucy Tidbury before I drove back to Essex. Unfortunately for Lucy my purchasing power was only to buy some cards to take back to Essex with me.
Twenty five months on I have been a bay holder at the yard for 4 months. What does this all involve?
It lies in Church Street, Wareham, Dorset. It is not easy to find ( this is an ongoing area to make us more prominent) as most visitors see the Quay, and ‘High Street’ (a combination of shops in South Street, North Street and West Street. It used to be the town’s fire station and also a builder’s yard. Today it houses 12 bays of Art, Craft, Artisan goods. There are spaces for guest artists too.
We rent a section in the yard for a monthly rent and we then staff the yard as a representative of the collective on average once every 12 days. We can rent a whole bay or with other Artisans we can share a bay – many bays are shared amongst 3 different Artisans. This splits the cost up and also the duty responsibilities.
Staffing the yard
Today I will be at the yard as Bay H representative not purely as AndyKnillArt, in fact on previous duty days I have had successful sale days for the yard but not so for my own work as I have focused on the teamwork element. My role is to have the yard open to visitors from 10 am to 5 pm. Outside that time I have to collect and return the float and any sales monies. We take cash and card payments so I must keep the technology charged,clean up in the yard and keep our sales records for accounting purposes and also so every artisan can monitor their personal sales.
I enjoy the interaction with visitors just as I do when doing my other role at Wareham Boat Hire. It gives me great pleasure to wrap sold goods so they can be taken away to enjoy. Chatting with visitors, answering questions where possible, signposting people to someone or some people who might fit their needs.
Importantly,while I am on duty there are other roles;
Today I will be hosting a new artisan who will ‘shadow’ me to see how a duty day unfolds and what is involved ready for their first duty.
I have some clients who bought some work from my home Open Studio during PAW18, but let me keep it on display until the end of the event, who are coming to collect their piece of my art.
Friends including fellow Artisans who drop by to catch up.
Anne who will come for lunchtime and if my last Saturday duty is anything to go by will help me to package goods (gift shop experience).
Finally, I represent my bay and AndyKnillArt. I will do some art work during the day as time allows. I often take much of my Promarker pen collection so I can share the media with others. I have produced a number of pieces while on previous duties.
The most significant started as a drawing of the view from the front gate of the yard. It shows very clearly where we are located and is a great example of my pen work at its best. Unfortunately rain on the day meant that I completed the piece from photos at the work table inside. Often I will work from photos while on duty.
If you decide to visit the yard today say hello and let me know you have seen this post. How will you find us?
– you’ve been before and know where we are
– follow the arrow signs in town
– look for St Mary’s church from my picture -its wind vane is a golden fish on top of the tower. It lies at the south side of the town close to the Quay. Walk to the church and from the front door look for the pink cottage, walk along the side of the churchyard to it. Take the small street alongside the end of the house and find the wall with words painted on about work you may see inside-you have arrived. Walk through the yard, past the pig and enter our front door.
Hope to meet you soon. If reading this from a place far far away from Dorset please comment and give me some feedback.
Thanks for reading