Summer 2010 068

Tomorrow marks the start of my 7th season with the Iowa City Farmers Market. Back in the summer of 2010, having recently moved home after several years in Montana, I decided to take a chance and see if my photography might actually sell. Out west I’d come across photographers who created handmade note cards from their prints and sold them at the local Whitefish farmers market, so with my wife’s encouragement I decided to give that a try here.

For my first attempt, I made about fifteen cards. Cris and I were living in an apartment in Iowa City at the time, and I pulled two framed prints off of our living room wall. I had little intention of selling these, I just thought they would fill the table and make a nice display. Feeling the weight of my social anxiety, I convinced my sister Tiffany, who had also helped me secure a substitute vendor slot, to come and help me tend the booth. I had little expectation, but when the final whistle sounded that day I was almost out of cards and neither framed print would be returning to our apartment wall. It was enough to convince me to go ahead and give this thing a whirl…

Now here I am, several years later, still going strong. This will be my fifth season as a full time market vendor, I’m looking at some potential retail opportunities, and I’ve been accepted into a number of juried art shows across three states for this summer and fall. It hasn’t been easy- for every success there’s been plenty of rejection and heartbreak along the way- and I still have a long way to go to get to where I want to be. But at the start of each season, filled with excitement and apprehension, I take a minute to look back and remember how it all started with this table right here.