If you are from outside the area, or have not participated in Art Trails before, here are a few tips regarding what you can expect.
Consider your travel and lodging expenses when making your decision. Also, the time it takes to set up before the show, and to shut down after. The show starts promptly at 10 am each day. Most artists do the bulk of their set-up the day before their site opens to avoid rushing in the morning or opening late.
Consider whether you have the displays you need. If you are used to doing shows, you probably already have the displays you need. If not, you will need to purchase or construct them. Artists who require indoor space, or large wall space may have a difficult time finding a location that meets their needs.
The planning committee works with artists looking for sites, offering available options and connecting artists with hosts, but the final choice and communication with the site host is the artist’s responsibility.
Sierra Art Trails receives an estimated 1000 to 2000 visitors during the three-day event. Artists should be aware that these visitors do not visit all locations. At Gallery Row, headquarters for the event, and the location for the Preview Exhibit, 300 to 500 visitors attend daily. Visitation at other sites ranges widely, based on the reputation of the artists showing, the popularity of the site, marketing efforts by participating artists, location and signage.
Sierra Art Trails is not a festival, with all traffic concentrated in one place. Sites are spread over a wide area in two counties. We estimate that visitors visit approx. 10 sites a day. Visitors who are familiar with the show visit their favorite artists year after year, and share their favorite sites with others. The average site visitation in 2017 and 2018 was approx. 40 to 60 people daily.
As a general rule, artists who are new to the show, or are showing at new venues receive less traffic than seasoned artists with established locations and clientele. It can take a year or two for visitors to become familiar with new artists and their locations.
Artists who engage visitors by demonstrating and explaining their work encourage them to stay longer. Buying art is an emotional experience. Establishing a personal connection can lead to sales. People are excited about meeting artists in person, and are more likely to buy work from someone they like and respect.
Sites with more signs and more visible signs draw more traffic. Review our signage guidelines for helpful tips.
Regardless of where you show, we have seen year after year that the artists that produce great work, market themselves well, and engage the public are the most successful in terms of sales, regardless of where they show.
A final consideration. Sierra Art Trails is a community event. Engagement and collaboration are important to success. Communication and networking, attending the All Artists Meeting in August, and submitting your work to the Preview Exhibit at Stellar Gallery are all important aspects of the show. The more you engage with other artists and the organization the better the experience will be.
If you have questions you can contact us by phone at 559-658-8844 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org