My Blog Journal


Running a Printing Marathon….

fine art epson paper for cards and prints

I’m sorry for my blogging absence ~ my last post was nearly one month ago! Oh my!

The last 30 days have been hectic, both at home and my day-job, where we just finished the annual store inventory… (I worked an 18-hour shift on Wednesday and a 12-hour shift on Thursday). Overtime = good. Sleep = didn’t happen.

Now that the cake-mania surrounding Graduation and Father’s Day is slowly ebbing away (pssst, don’t mention July 4th unless you want to hear me scream), I can buckle down with the Major Printing Marathon that needs to be finished before Saturday morning. O_o

Saturday is the Urbana Music and Arts Festival, in Frederick, Maryland. I will be selling my Regency cat artwork at the festival from noon until 6:00PM.

It will be hosted at the Urbana Regional Library, on 9020 Amelung Street…. vendors will be scattered both inside and outside, and I will be found inside the library, which is the purrfect place for literary cats like Mr. Darcy and Mr. Bennet to be.
I have agreed to donate 15% of my proceeds to their Friends of the Library fund.

After Saturday, there will be no rest for the wicked… because I will have to restock any sold items for the following Saturday, when I start my summer Farmer’s Market shows in Westminster, MD.

The Carroll County Farmer’s Market is held in the Agriculture Center building, on 700 Agriculture Center Drive. The market is open from 8:00AM to 1:00PM, and you can find directions here on their website.

The first four Saturdays, I will be found in one of two metal buildings (June 30th ~ 2nd building, July 7th ~ 1st building, June 14th + 21st ~ 2nd building again).
From July 28th ~ Aug 4th, Westminster will be hosting a 4H/FFA Fair, and the farmer’s market will be moving outside to participate. We bought a tent! Guess that makes things official now, eh?

After the fair, I’ll be attending two more summer shows (Aug 25th and Sep. 1st), both of which will be inside Blizzard Hall.

I’ve requested to participate in their winter shows, but the contract hasn’t been sent out yet. Convincing my day-job managers to let me take a few Saturdays off during the busiest time of the year might be problematic, too. :/

So you’re probably curious about the items I’ll be selling, right? I drafted a master inventory list weeks ago, and although I’ve tweaked it somewhat ~ adding extra copies of some items, reducing quantities of others, essentially I’m printing:

  • 10 – 11×14 matted prints
  • 5 – 11×14 matted prints in 16×20 frames
  • 70 – 8×10 prints (over half will be matted)
  • 98 – 5×7 prints (again, roughly half are matted)
  • 250 – greeting cards
  • 280 – bookmarks
  • as many ACEOs as I can squeeze around my larger prints using the 13″x19″ sheets (LOL!)
  • 20+ ACEOs matted to 5×7… and possibly framed, when I have time ;O)
  • 35 – wooden plaques
  • (if I have time…) pendant necklaces


ready cut mats for framing, 11x14, 8x10, 5x7

I’m still working my way through the list of greeting cards (roughly halfway there!!)… and my new spinning rack still looks neglected, despite Lydia’s assurances that I have plenty of cards already, and can stop making more! Bless her heart.

regency cat greeting cards on display rack

Each of these cards is trimmed, folded, and packaged by me… :)

I purchased plastic locking storage boxes to safely store everything before/after the show, but the potential liability of having so much printed inventory on-hand is giving me goosebumps. I’ve become quite complacent with printing-on-demand as orders come in, and that is the #1 reason I purchased my Epson printer to begin with.

I know that I could get prints in large quantities (even Giclee prints) outsourced for less money than it costs me to print-at-home… however, there is something truly satisfying about tweaking the layout in Photoshop, feeding each over-sized page into the printer, watching the prints emerge, trimming each image, signing the backside, and packaging them in cellophane sleeves… one at a time, by hand.

Of course it takes 20x longer to do it my way. ;)

Joe has also been getting his hands greasy… stained, actually. He has been using wood stain on little round plaques, adhering my art prints onto them, and varnishing over the top. (I took this picture before varnishing…)
Mr Darcy Cat wood plaque wall art

He added craft felt to the back, and tiny triangle hangers to hang on the wall. They also look cute on little easels, which is how I’ll be displaying them on my booth table.
They add the perfect touch to a small nook in your house.

And I’m tickled with how my business cards turned out! I created seven collectible designs featuring my Regency Cat portraits, along with complementary quotes from Pride and Prejudice. I’ve given out quite a few of them already!
Regency cat art Redcoat soldier on business cards

I’ve also been telling everyone that I run across about my upcoming show(s)…

Where my new-found confidence is coming from, I have no idea?! But I wish I could bottle it up, in case I need it in the future.

I remember well how painfully shy I was when people inquired about my art; it wasn’t that long ago. Like many of you, I am much more outgoing and personable on the Internet… and although I can joke around well enough with friends in real life, I tend to clam up with strangers.
Especially strangers who are critically looking at my artwork, and waiting expectantly for me to give an educated, in-depth explanation about my “process”.

These face-to-face summer craft shows will hopefully give me the experience needed to talk “art” anywhere with anyone, and allow people to put a human face with all this cat business.
Although I’m tempted to wear a cat mask and Regency dress! LOL ;D

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