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Recap: October First Saturday Arts Market

October 5, 2014


What a change from a month ago.  It will be short-lived, but the weather yesterday was gorgeous.  Temperatures in the 70s and low 80s, with a light breeze under a clear blue sky.  Couldn’t have asked for a nicer day.

by Darlene Besier 1

Photo by Darlene Besier


We continued our focus on the miniature work as well as having larger (8×10) unframed originals available.  The crowd was manageable.  While there were some occasional quiet moments, for the most part it was steady and at times really busy.


Until now, the minis have almost all had Nell’s touch with strong, bold color.  I did a couple in more subdued tones in anticipation that some people might prefer that.  They sold as well, with one lady saying “I’m not a bright color person.”  I’ll probably do more of these.






Nell had produced quite a few of her little signature florals for this market.  Now she has to do more because we sold almost every one of them.  These little gems are very popular everywhere we go.



house4no 50

Unframed mini paintings were popular yesterday.  A number of 3″x 3 ” like the one on the left above found new homes, and a set of four 2″x 2″ sold as well. These are on stretched canvas and look nice sitting on small easels.

It looked like everyone who passed by was in a good mood (again, beautiful weather) and folks seemed to be in a buying mood. We had a couple of repeat customers who came back looking for companion pieces to framed minis they had purchased before, and a very nice English couple who move their art with them to various places added an 8×10 painting of a snowy Ohio field and trees to their collection.  A little girl came by with her mother and said she keeps her jewelry in the little Treasure Keeper box they bought at White Linen Night in August.  There was a couple who were moving to New York and expected to move into a smaller living environment.  Small art was important to them.  There was the Minimalist who displays very little art, but had to have one of our colorful, tiny pieces, because it made her smile.

Our friend Charlie Buck came by, and it was a delight to meet his family.  We felt bad that we were distracted by the crowd that was keeping us busy.  Charlie has supplied us with the tiles that we’re hoping will become great coasters and trivets.  We think we’re getting close to going into production.

As always, we enjoyed spending the day in the company of potter John Delafield and jeweler Steve Sellers, who were on either side of us.  It was fun to watch their inventory go down throughout the day just as ours did.  We also again sing the praises of Mitchell Cohen, founder, owner and coordinator of First Saturday Arts Market.  He tirelessly promotes this monthly market, brings in great live music and food trucks, and keeps things running smoothly for the artists.  Gen’s Antiques, our next door neighbor has partnered with the Market, allowing the artists a chance to cool off in the summer heat and to use their facilities.  An extra bonus for the Market artists is that Doug at Gen’s displays our art for sale with no commission.  Gen’s Antiques is located at 540 W. 19th Street, Houston, TX, and they are open every day until 7:30 pm.

minis at fsam octWe sold seagulls, colorful roosters and fish, and even cute little bluebirds. The flying pelican on the orange background headed to a beach house along with a framed 5×7 beach painting.


And pigs did fly.  This one sold online before the show, but we took four more to the market, all different, and sold three of them.

This stuff won’t go in the art history books, by any means.  But it’s something we do together, a fun, no-stress way of generating a little income.  We hope to add the coasters and trivets soon, and we’re looking for a convenient way to display just a handful of framed paintings without adding a lot of bulk to the show equipment.  That will give us more depth, with a balance between tiny whimsy and larger, more traditional work.  Our approach to art, like our lifestyle, continues to be a work in progress.

We will be relocating from Houston to the Austin, Texas area in the next few months.  We’ll only be three hours away, so we’ll continue to do the First Saturday Arts Market, even after we move.

It’s a busy time.  Tomorrow, we close on the purchase and take delivery of a 36 foot fifth wheel trailer.  We’ll transfer our belongings and then place our motorhome to be sold on consignment.  We also need to replenish our inventory of small art before the weekend.  We’re scheduled to have a booth set up at the Imperial Sugar Farmers Market next Saturday morning.

We’re having a good time.

by Darlene Besier 2 at 500

Photo by Darlene Besier



4 Comments leave one →
  1. Margaret Quin permalink
    October 5, 2014 8:59 pm

    Very nice picture, Ralph & Nell!
    Thank you for keeping me on your list; I do so enjoy seeing your latest work & hearing about your adventures!
    Margaret Quin,

    Sent from my iPhone


  2. October 13, 2014 4:23 pm

    Nice report on the Arts Market. Good to see sales of artwork happening. Hope you continue to have success and your new home is all you wanted.

    • October 14, 2014 9:07 pm

      Thanks, PG. Little bitty, inexpensive stuff is selling. But that’s better than nothing.

  3. wade evans permalink
    October 15, 2014 10:44 am

    Really enjoying your new work! Keep it up!

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