“As artists we’re always looking for different ways to sell your art and how do you connect with the customer, just new ways to do that,” said Robin Miller, public relations coordinator for the North Georgia Art Ramble. “What we’ve found is either through being out in craft shows or selling online or whatever else, if you can make a connection with your buyer — meaning if they can hear your story and see how you work or maybe see some of your techniques or even hear you talk about how you do things and why you do them and what inspired you and also maybe see the quirkiness of the different artists — they are more likely to buy your work because they have now a personal connection and a story to the art.
“So that’s essentially why we originally wanted to do the open studio tour,” she said, adding the event initially was spearheaded by Canton potter Fred Ellis. “The way that a lot of galleries and art centers became involved is as far as being in north Georgia they need people to come out and look at them and the art centers are essentially one way to help artists who may not have their own studio at home. They may work out of the art center and then the art center can give them a spot to have people come and talk ... and the galleries also try to bring in the artists who they are representing to talk to people when they come in.”
Among the 44 stops on the tour will be three venues in Cartersville: Spring Place Pottery & Artists’ Gallery, 15 E. Main St., 770-383-9910, www.springplacepottery.com; Downtown Gallery, 13 N. Wall St., 770-387-4330, www.boothmuseum.org/downtown-gallery; and Donald Freking Pottery, 1019 Cassville Road, 770-382-3765 or 404-626-7355, www.frekingpottery.com. Spring Place Pottery was the only location in Bartow County to be included in the North Georgia Art Ramble’s inaugural tour, which featured 27 stops and 44 artists.
“[What I enjoyed most] I think [was] drawing new customers, introducing people to the gallery that had not been in before. There were people from several areas outside of Cartersville,” said Gail Freeman, owner of Spring Place Pottery, which represents 40 artists, whose mediums range from pottery to jewelry to woodburning.
“... [This year] we will have artists demonstrating. Saturday, we’ll have Jackie Chapman from Douglasville doing pottery demos on the pottery wheel [and] ... Tina Evans [who] is our fiber artist doing yarn spinning demonstrations. Then on Sunday, Terri Paulk will be doing woodburning and then Rebecca Frazee who’s one of our painters will be doing some painting demonstrations. I think it will give customers, especially those who haven’t been in the store, an introduction to all those mediums the artists’ do.”
For more information and a list of participating artists and venues, visit www.ngaartramble.com.