Opening up a Can of Worms … or is that Stop Bath?

It sucks! It sucks!
It sucks! It sucks!

So my first showing of my [tag]photography[/tag] started off a little bumpy. To whit: it took me much, much longer to mat 30 some photos – I was still matting two hours before I was supposed to be at Sitwell’s at 7 a.m. on Tuesday to hang them. Plus, I learned that cutting mat board to custom-sized prints – hell, cutting and matting at all – sucks. There’s no other way to say it. It sucks. And I suck at it. I sucked at crafts as a kid in school, and I suck at crafts as an adult.

To add insult to injury, I decided at the last minute that I should frame all these photos. Might as well go all out, I figured. Ever try and buy 30 11 x 14 frames at one shot? It’s not easy, nor inexpensive. So I ordered them online, thinking at worst, it would take a week – specially since I ordered them from a local place. Nope.

So I get to Sitwells, haggard and crabby, only to have the matting starting to fall apart after only a few hours because the AC is busted and it’s hotter than $2 pistol inside, as my father would say. The archival matting tape was no match for 90 degrees and 60 percent humidity. So, at this point, I’m disgusted, tired, and telling myself that this experience has robbed me of all the joy I took in creating these images, and that I’ll never do anything like this again. But I have to admit, even though I know my images are amateur – maybe advanced amateur, perhaps, but I can’t claim that they are ready for [tag]fine art[/tag] giclée print treatment – there is something about seeing your work hanging in public. I hung out at Sitwell’s most of the day today, working, and caught more than one person perusing my prints; even overheard some positive comments. And I’ve even sold a print. The very first print sold that wasn’t part of a specific shoot for a friend/client. Hot damn. That’s it, below:

Sisters in Black & WhiteSo now all of a sudden I’m looking at online photo [tag]printing services[/tag], and services for [tag]photographers[/tag], and services that provide fine art prints, and reading all about the benefits of offering prints in standard vs. non-standard aspect ratios, framing and matting, and looking at the advanced amateur and pro groups on [tag]Flickr[/tag], and looking at those photos that are out of my league (for now), and alternating between being depressed and excited. Depressed in that I still have a lot to learn, and that the business end of it completely turns me off; in fact I’ve decided that I’m not going to let photography become a job for me, like writing. I’ll save journalism vs. creative writing for another time, but let it suffice to say that after a day of writing and editing copy, I don’t often find myself wanting to jockey a keyboard in my spare time, even if it’s something I want to write – one of the reasons I don’t blog much, I suppose. I want to make photographs and images that appeal to me; I want to follow my muse and everything else be damned. But if I can sell some along the way, cool. If it could even pay for itself, even better.

Anyway, I am excited about the possibilities, however. I think perhaps I’ve opened the proverbial can of worms by agreeing to display my work at the coffee shop. …