I recently attended Faeriecon 2018 as an artist and vendor. Before committing to apply I tried finding out about other artists experiences, but wasn’t able to find much. I wanted to share my experience and thoughts with anyone who’s been considering vending at FaerieCon.
First, vending at Feriecon isn’t cheap, so you really should consider if the event is right for you, and if it will be drawing the kind of audience that fits your work. For me it was even more costly, because of traveling expenses. I usually stick to more local events, but it can be refreshing to mix it up. It also depends on what you are looking for out of the event. My main goal was building connections and networking with the other artists. I was especially successful with this because attendance was lower than I expected. Which had the benefit of me actually being able to have conversations with the guest artists, instead of staring longingly from behind a throng of people.
There was also a downside to this. I will admit that attendance was lower than expected, especially considering the booth rates. I don’t know if this is an overall thing, since I was only there one year. From chatting with the other vendors it seems they were expecting, and used to, a little higher attendance. If your main goal is sales, this isn’t the best news.
The other thing to consider is the atmosphere. The atmosphere of an event is very important to me because it sets the tone for you experience. The other vendor’s booths were amazingly decorated and set up beautifully. This is really important in creating the overall magical feel of the event. That being said, most of the vendors and artists were in one large room, while the panels and workshops were held in various other rooms. This led to a kind of disconnected feel, and honestly took away a bit from the magic, because it felt more like a selling area, than an area to participate in the other events.
Another thing I want to mention is that is not an event for getting your portfolio out there. Some conventions are more geared toward that. If you are interested in licensing, or working with a gallery, this event does not have scouts or representatives looking to pick up artists. That being said, you still never know what opportunities will come out of an event.
The biggest factor to consider is that FaerieCon is changing venues in 2019. The new space will be in downtown Baltimore. This means increased booth rates and hotel rates. I don’t know what this change will do, but it will likely affect all areas of the con, including attendance. It’s just something to be aware of, especially if you are considering participating.
I hope this article has been a little helpful. As an artist I am open to answering specific questions if you want to reach out.
Thanks for reading.