I am going to try and write more, not with much anticipation that anyone is really reading it.. but more to keep track of things myself and be able to look back at notes and timelines and such. I tend to lose track a bit.
This week has been pretty busy, mainly with packing and shipping. The big wave of orders from release 4 has been a challenge to keep ahead of. Shipping is still stressful but not near as much as release one. After doing it and getting positive feedback from people who have ordered, and not really having any big blunders - well.. it does get easier I suppose. And we have been pretty good about not delaying more than 5-6 days from order to shipment.
The only damaged tube we’ve had has been this poor guy in Dublin. I botched the label and his prints ended up in the LA hub for a month and a half (I imagine it in a dusty corner getting kicked around while other properly marked mail was getting handled…poor robot) I sent him a replacement with proper addressing, and sure enough his first order finally made it to him as well.. but the tube was beat up pretty bad. Remarkably though the prints inside were fine. But if anyone ever gets a damaged print (or even worse, no print at all), basically what I am going to do is mark the damaged edition accordingly in the archives and send out a replacement. If it is a situation where the edition is sold out and there are no replacements. I will send a nice proof, and contact the customer to select a different edition as well. Rather than reprint the damaged edition number which is not very good form in my opinion.
I don’t know why I said all that, just kinda got sidetracked.
I received some really amazing emails this last week, my favorite is from a customer who ordered a Stars edition. It was ordered as a birthday gift for her father who was a pioneer in artificial intelligence. After getting her print she took the time to let me know how wonderful it was and excited she was to give it to her dad. It made me feel like a million bucks. I know it might sound silly, but it totally made my day. It is nice to pull my head out of the printing and packing and working on plates to check my email and get personal messages from folks who have not only appreciated my work enough to buy it but also to contact me after holding it in person. It is pretty wonderful.
I am currently working on a couple different fronts.
First I have been delaying in getting my press kit done. I really do not like to present myself or market or anything like that. It is awkward and difficult and very far from my comfort zone I would much rather just make stuff. But unfortunately just telling people I am reclusive and want to make a spire does not cut it. So I have to wrap up the press kit, get photos taken and put that “to do” behind me.
Christmas is coming, and I am going to be putting out a small set of prints, and cards (yay) they will be tasteful and It will give me an opportunity to use my Astronaut Santa plate. I am also making a very special card for all the incredible people who have supported AP the last several months. So that’s pretty neat.
AP’s official newsletter is up and running, should have the first one out next week. Using mailchimp, which is a very easy to use and powerful email database system with all the bells and whistles. I plan on using the newsletter to put out solid info on AP, illustration, print making and featuring some of the incredible artists and makers I have come to know over the years.
This whole experiment has made me understand the mindset of independent artists so much better. There is such a huge commitment to hand making products to sell to the public. I thought I was savvy before with my shirts and prints and other merch that was produced and sold through different (great) companies. But there was a disconnect that I truly only understand now. And heading into the holiday season with my new outlook makes me want to spend every single shopping dollar on independent artists, artisans, makers and crafters. And that is exactly the plan. When you purchase from a small online store, you are basically santa claus.. giving both to the maker and the giftee. So consider doing the same thing this holiday. If you need a gift for someone, look first at the independent shops, stores and websites. For the most part you will find people and product that has more quality and love invested than anything corporately produced could ever achieve. The world is at your fingertips and there are thousands of brilliant people making one of a kind items. Just something to think about. And to you magical people out there who put your heart into making stuff, and take the huge risk of putting it out into the world. I give you all high fives. Well done.
I was up late again last night trying to find supplies for my riso gocco. I swear JAPAN!! get your act together. You cannot make the coolest easiest screenprinter in history and then just shudder your doors. I found a case of 400 bulbs in Australia for like $800 which I almost considered but seriously… 400 bulbs. a little excessive. And the screens are pretty much all gone. unless you want to spend a fortune for 2 on ebay. So gonna try making my own - lots of folks do it. Shouldn’t be too hard (famous last words)
This post is ridiculous. Is it obvious I am avoiding working on press kit copy? ha!