Bryant Street Festival, Pittsburgh

7 06 2010

Today was the 2nd Bryant Street festival, in Highland Park, Pittsburgh. This is a small festival that is put together by the neighbourhood union to bring Bryant Street back to life. Bryant Street was a good commercial street in the past, but I guess it decayed and while it looks abandoned and a little crappy, the neighbourhood could use a nice small commercial area, and the location is great. The street has been slowly picking up during the last two years (as long as I lived in Pit).

Bryant street festival view.

The idea behind the festival is nice and the push is hard, they even bring in bands! This year much more people went and there were also more vendors. Although modest and very small (it is about 1-2 blocks along the street), I think it has potential. The fee for a table is only $20 and even though I did not see a lot of people buying anything but food, I think it would be a good idea to give it a try given that is so cheap and only 5 blocks away from home and the set up would be minimal. I guess the most important thing would be to figure out how to attract people, and how to get them to hang around and spend money. The festival absolutely needs more publicity, but then, it is oriented to the neighbourhood, though I believe we all could benefit from outer people coming in.

While my art would be completely different to what is seen there, that does not mean it would be a good thing. I acknowledge that it might not suit the most conventional neighbourhood mom and dad, but who knows? Next year I want to have a small stock of prints and products, maybe I’ll bring only the more family friendly ones. Perhaps I can also print some line art of my drawings and put some colored pencils out there for kids to stay around and have some fun, maybe that could help parents to want to spend some money?

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What do you think about it? What strategies would you implement to attract people? I have never done anything of the like so any advice you could give, I am really eager to listen!


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5 responses

7 06 2010
Hanna

Having a bright fun looking boot helps. The colouring sheets would be fun and I think that portraits do well. You don’t even have to do caricatures, just whatever style you like and can do reasonably quickly. Hmmm…can you get stick on tattoos made of your art? wait I just googled it, you can! http://www.beldecal.com/tattoo_paper.cfm I want to make some now!

7 06 2010
faerywitch

Hey happy Boots wouldn’t be a bad idea!😉
Yes, a nice booth should be attractive, given that most tables were quite… well, basic, and people looked bored at them. I was thinking too that if I was sketching and being happy there people might find it easier to gather around.
The tattoo thing is a great idea! My printer sucks, though, so I wonder how much would it cost to have them made at Kinko’s or something of the like? I should really think of investing in a good scanner-printer.

7 06 2010
Hanna

and I meant booth, although fun boots are also a good thing I’m sure.

7 06 2010
Angela S.

I think you won’t really know how to address this situation till you try! Having more family friendly things would be a good idea. Your work is especially suited for coloring packets, and those shouldn’t be too expensive to print. I like the previous commentor’s ideas for temporary tatts as well. They sell printer paper that lets you print color tattoos out with regular ink! Might be worth it to print out on that, cut them up, and resell them in baggies or something to that effect (maybe a quarter a pop per single tatt and have them in a little basket?)

It’s hard to tell in local places just what they’ll like, but you never know who you might meet and with a low risk setup like that, it’s worth a shot! I know people always love that an artist is local. Tap into that neighborhood pride!

7 06 2010
faerywitch

Thanks, Angela, I will have to try. Next winter I need to start focusing on building some stock and be ready for the summer🙂

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