...serenity in motion

Another Show, Another Story, doing it right and having it all still go wrong

Another show, another story…

I have talked about investment.  Investment in you, in time, in your focus…. Have I discussed investing in equipment?  A storm blew up out of the blue (again) and it took out over 40 displays total throughout 2 shows running the same weekend.  Tents and inventory scattered across streets and parks, artists up in the middle of the night trying to salvage what they could and making the exhausting decision about whether to pull out completely or create a display for the remainder of the event.  Lots of videos on facebook about the event and snarky comments followed the whole thing.  Post after post about not doing it right in the first place, obviously; the sufferers didn’t anchor things correctly.  The video shows the wreckage, and it was proof that they did it all wrong. 

The problem was; most of the sufferers had done all of it right.  They had spent the money on the correct equipment.  Things were anchored and weighted, the artists were conscientious about their investment.  They had tried to button things down the way they should.  Sometimes, it doesn’t matter and everything you did correctly still ends up in disaster.  I have included 2 photos from one of the intrepid eventers.  The first is of an amazing, expensive set up with the right weights and good equipment.  The second is the aftermath, the remaining wreckage of what was left of his display tent.

You do your best, follow all the rules, listen to the best advice and a storm comes up.  It doesn’t go down the list of does and don’ts.  It doesn’t care if you were paying attention or not, won’t care if you cheated or followed the rules; it just picked up your entire display and rolled it across the walkway.  Sorry.  Only makes it worse that the guy right next to you didn’t get hit by the blast and he is still standing. 

You can get insurance, and I’d advise you to get some.  I have a policy through ACT and it will cover this kind of mess but, it won’t cover your lost time to replace everything.  It doesn’t help you recreate all of your inventory, and it certainly doesn’t give you full price for your losses.

The other investment is in you venue.  Picking the right show at the time can make all the difference in whether or not you are saving your investment alone or if you have help.  In the pictures below, you do not see much inventory on the ground in the second photo.  Why?  Because the organizers were out there with in minutes of the storm blowing up.  They were pulling art out of the dirt, tucking it away in safe places, covering it up.  Another show that same weekend, didn't tell any of its vendors that there was a storm and that there were displays damadged.  A third felt that no news was good news and artists didn't need to know that everything was ok.  Desplite the social media storm blowing up Facebook about the shows and storm damadge.

Why am I talking about this? Because it is a reality.  You take that chance every time you set up.  It could be a fire in the building, drunks in a brawl in your display or a freak weather event.  It is life and you need to be aware of what can happen.  Artists who do shows face this every weekend they are out, every year they are on display.  Make an active choice and when it happens, learn how to rescue yourself.  Have a back up plan, people you can call and spares of your equipment.  The quickest way to recover is to jump back on the horse as soon as you can. Find your sea legs and get back out there because if you waste too much energy on what you are up against, you might lose your nerve.  Then it is a 9-5 and answering to upper management.  Okay, now I am shaken.

mike disaster.jpgMike disaster2.jpg