My former students (Business not Art) will tell you that the issue of inventory featured heavily in my lectures. ‘What is the single biggest issue facing business today?’ I would ask – ‘inventory’ was always the answer. An often quoted view is that ‘it’s better to be looking at it, than to be looking for it’. That way of thinking does not really help – inventory has a cost. Usually the problem is too much inventory and probably in the wrong place. Not well understood is that, having too much inventory prevents you from moving on (like baggage!). You can’t bring in the new model until you clear the pipeline.
For the artist a certain amount of inventory is necessary, though. It is necessary to have a ‘body of work’ before you launch yourself on the market, and lets face it – you cant have an exhibition unless you have a selection of work to show. However your body of work does have a cost and especially so if it is framed up. It can be a big investment. And as I said, too much inventory prevents you from moving on. The artist needs to be constantly moving on.
Whats the solution then? The same as for any retail enterprise – the Studio Sale.
It’s easy to be precious about your work. I wouldn’t show any painting that I wasn’t happy with. I actually get quite attached to many of them, and I am sad sometimes to see them go, but go they must.
I have developed a pricing model for my paintings, it seems to work well enough. Initially I set very modest prices, the paintings sold, so I increased the prices and now I find that I have come to a balance point where I sell enough and have few complaints about prices. (I had previously received complaints about low prices from some other artisits!)
I have come to the opinion that if someone likes your painting they wont argue about the price, and conversely if you drop the prices people wont necessarily buy more paintings. So, on balance, my advice would be – once you reach the balance point – hold firm on prices.
But then there’s the inventory issue. And the studio sale to clear the inventory. Its a tricky balancing act.
For the month of December (2022) then, if you should call to my studio, you will find that I am working ahead on new work, with a view to next years exhibitions – and – also trying to clear some inventory. On Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays, up to Christmas, I will be having a half price sale. I will have work on display that I have shown in the past couple of years and older work, some prints and if that doesn’t suit, I have a few cards. You will find me on the Norelands Road, in Stoneyford, Co Kilkenny (R95R704). (087 6695635) https://booleyart.com/home gallery
But never mind the sale, come along for a chat, especially if you are interested in watercolour painting. Painting is very therapeutic, it is restful and rewarding, when you finish a piece that you are happy with. I’ve being doing it now for about eight years (before that – oils). I’ll make a coffee, and we can talk about the process and so on, and I can answer any questions you might have.
That’s another thing my former students will tell you, I love to talk about the things I love.