Wow – what a BirdFair we had this year! Can it really keep getting bigger and better each year?
It was my sixth year as an exhibitor, and I’d made a deliberate effort to increase my BirdFair presence. This year I had a double stand – so much better than a single as I had more space to display work and had room to demonstrate an acrylic painting. It was much better for visitors too, as they didn’t feel crowded while they browsed.
Since last year’s event I’ve had new banner stands and new headers made, and I was really pleased with the way they looked. Lighting was another improvement and, thanks to my wonderful techie sister, we were able to show my website on the stand and take credit card payments. A big improvement!
BirdFair TV was a new innovation this year, and what a great addition that is. If you haven’t had a look yet, check it out (link at the end of this post). Film crews from Digital Spring recorded footage throughout the fair to give a real sense of what BirdFair is all about. More footage will be posted on their site over the coming days, including my demonstration Spotlight On… Jackie Garner” and an interview with me at my stand. More about the Spotlight session on tomorrow’s blog post, otherwise this post will be the length of War and Peace.
One of my favourite parts of BirdFair is painting the mural. More than forty artists take part over the three days, with each of us choosing a couple of species to paint. This year mine were Black-crowned Crane and Saker Falcon. There’s a real camaraderie amongst the artists, and it’s great to see it taking shape during BirdFair. For some artists the only time they ever paint in acrylics is on the mural, and for the sculptors it may be the only time they ever paint.
Occasionally there’s a downside to BirdFair, and that’s usually the weather! This year had a few downpours but most of the rain was overnight. There was quite a lot of sun too, so the site didn’t become the mud bath it might have done, but I’m very glad I hadn’t chosen to camp.
The best part of BirdFair though is the chance for like-minded people to meet up, have a great time and raise money for conservation at the same time. It’s a really happy fair: fun, informative and friendly. What more can you ask?