Every Wednesday I work at Village Gifts & Fine Arts. Working there is a great way to get out of my studio for a day to meet and talk to people. I also have the added benefit of a free parking pass which saves us a lot of money and time in finding places to park in Lahaina. Working on Wednesday's breaks up my week and adds $$$ to my income, both are really good things. But the best part about working there is meeting people who collect my work.
Last week, March 20th, was a pretty slow day as far as customers coming into the gallery/gift shop. Around early to mid afternoon a woman came in telling her husband she finally found the shop she was looking for. I welcomed her and mentioned I was glad she found us. She told me she had been here before but couldn't remember where we were located and had been walking all around Front Street looking for us. Then she headed straight to the shelves where my miniature paintings sit. She told me she bought one, a waterfall, last year and loved it and wanted to add another one to her collection. I mentioned I was the artist. She was quite happy to hear that and said she came close to meeting me last year. After looking over the paintings she said she was going to look around the shop a few minuets while she decided on which one she wanted.
Her few minuets were the fastest few minuets I've seen in anyone trying to make up their mind. She had turned away from the shelf, walk around the display of purses, then turn right back around, went to my shelf, grabbed the painting she wanted and came over to me to buy it. She said she really didn't need to look any more because that was the one that spoke to her. After writing up her purchase, wrapping the painting and easel for safe traveling, I shook her hand and thanked her and told her I was very happy to meet her. I hope I get to see her again next year.
I don't get to meet a lot of my collectors. Many of them purchase my paintings at the other three galleries I'm in or on the days I don't work. So when I meet one I'm very grateful and excited to be able to talk with them. It makes my heart feel good to know my little gems give them pleasure and fond memories of their time on Maui.