Tag Archives: creativity

What I learned from the Flea Market

I recently had my first experience selling some of my handcrafts at the local market.

The Saturday fleamarket is $50 per week, so I went with the Sunday at $20 per week.

I made a $15 loss.

But here is everything I learned from that day.

 

My first goal was to churn out recycled hand crafts to create an income to buy art supplies. From the start, I was aiming to sell at a physical market, but then I got screaming from all directions that I had to sell directly from Facebook. So in this blog, I’m also going to compare the two.

I’ve used the FB market place, I’ve also spammed my FB artist page about selling items. I have used trademe.

Facebook market place: Free

Physical flea market: $20 per week

So far the only thing I have sold online are used video games and DVDs. However, any of my pieces that may have taken days to create have 10 views in 2 months and no comments after dropping the price three times. Meanwhile, my fiance chucks up an appliance, stating that it is broken and has three messages within minutes asking when they can pick it up and they will even give him $50. For a broken appliance. $20 for a painting that can fit in the palm of my hand that I spent hours on? TOOOOOOO MUUUUUUUUCCHHHHH.

I have found FB market place is great if you want to get rid of stuff. I will be using it to sell stuff locally. But for selling something you created, or to build a business it is a complete utter FAIL.

Do be warned: Some of FB marketplace groups attract bludgers with their hands out expecting free free free. If you want to make an actual profit, aim for the actual marketplace groups, there may be specific groups for actually selling created work, but I’ve never used them because selling on the internet nearly gives me a seizure or something. If you are just looking to get rid of crap and don’t care about making any money, local marketplace groups are great, so are garage sale and pay-it-forward groups.

The difference between this and a physical boot market is day and night.

You are there half the day and you are getting FAR more eyeballs than you got on FB for months. I’ve also noticed people actually commenting on my work, which is the very first time after those same objects sat on FB for weeks. I got a lot of ideas for further markets, while my FB market remains stagnant in complete silence, no feedback.

I made a $15 loss. But I actually sold something. How much did I sell on free FB again? Apart from 2nd hand DVDs that still sat there for a week? Nothing.

 

And before the shrieking winges of but maaaaaaaaarketiiiiiiiiing you’re not tryyyyyyyyyyyyyyiiiiiiiiing. I was haemorrhaging energy spamming FB for months and got radio silence. All I did at the book market was sit there and say ‘hi’ and got an immediate response. IRL communication is vastly superior to social media. Sometimes I didn’t even need to look at people, let alone say anything, to be communicated with about my product.

I did try. Didn’t work. Why shouldn’t I continue what did work?

Trying the same thing over and over that doesn’t work, isn’t entrepreneurship, it isn’t business, it is stupidity and insanity. And you would have to be even more stupid to chuck out what did work in favour of what didn’t.

 

I’ve only done this bootmarket once but I guess results can vary depending on the day. If it’s raining, good luck lol.

It pays to have a variety of stuff. I would recommend a few big things and many small things. I got that tip from many other artists and it seems like a really good idea. Your smaller cheaper things will sell like hotcakes because most people will be looking for something small and affordable. Don’t have too many bigger things, they are less likely to sell. Folks who go through markets expecting to blow a lot of money on a big piece come in very small numbers.

What you will need for a day at the market:

  • Table
  • Table cloth
  • Chair (“I’ll just stand” for at least four hours? Bring a chair!)
  • Tarp (optional but very useful)
  • Tent (semi-optional, you can buy it later with your profits. Never had one but I can see how they are worth every cent. Especially in the summer and when it’s raining.)
  • Food and drink (not optional! Must bring an entire picnic of your favourite snack foods! And a hot drink or two! And maybe wine!)
  • Container for cash (Important!!!!)
  • Trays & containers to hold small items
  • Price tags

I made my price tags out of cut up cereal boxes, cardboard tags from clothing and cheap twine I had lying around. My goal was to spend as little as possible on packaging. I assume there are no rules for price tags in most boot markets. Get creative. I’ve seen someone selling earrings stuck through playing cards. I’m tempted to buy some next time I see her.

Also, again, you are there for half the day. That’s hours. You need to be prepared for that.

 

In conclusion, I would recommend a physical market over an internet one. You might make a loss, but at least you will be actually selling. It’s also good experience and you can learn quite a bit (as I did!) which is why this one time was so valuable even though I made a loss.

 

Why you should not spend money to start your buisness!

.This year I’m learning a lot of things about starting a platform, be it FB, YT, Blogging, even a new business etc.

One piece of advice that I am mostly getting from YT is the biggest load of porkies I’ve ever seen.

Here it is:

“Buy this first! Then that! And fork out money for this this this this and that that that that that that or you will NEVER EVER be successful until you’ve dumped your entire bank account into it! Lol!”

If you’re just starting out with your platform as a side gig, this is the worst advice you could possibly get. I’m convinced that the people who give this are purposefully trying to sabotage beginners so that they don’t have competition.

And here’s why the advice is bullshit:

With what money, bitch???

If this thing you are starting is just a side hustle/hobby, you should not be pouring all your money into it, as other ‘famous’ people suggest.

In fact, side hustles should be almost if not completely free for you to start up. The point is that it is something you enjoy and it brings in a little extra cash. If you’re haemorrhaging your entire bank account into it, it’s not a side gig. It’s a main hustle. And you’ve just put all your eggs in one basket, which is probably the stupidest financial decision you could possibly make when you’re starting out.

Just look what happened to all your favourite YTers when the ad apocalypse happened. When getting paid just to turn on your camera and do whatever first became a thing, everyone jumped on the bandwagon. People even quit their jobs to do it full time. It was at this point that I saw their failure coming a mile away. How do you even expect that to last? Some of them didn’t even back up their paid-to-film-their-boring-life with merch, which would have been the most obvious next step for me, before I even knew anything about money. And yet they continued to sit on this one income, expecting to do the same thing over and over forever. Then the YT bubble collapsed. Suddenly you were wading through piles of videos of YTers screaming at their cameras “BAWWWWW the money disappeared! I can’t pay my bills! Give me money!” And that is how perfectly good, talented people dumped it all to become e-beggers, just to pay their bills for the mansion they bought with their YT money. And how is this YouTubes fault? You didn’t even have a backup. Or you can go back to the dayjob you abandoned for a platform that was never meant to last.

But not all of us are those YTers. Some of us are massively underpaid in their main day job, if not downright unemployed. We’re using what we actually have. The end, that’s it. Sometimes you’re forced to spend what you don’t have. If you have to skip meals to pay bills, pay all that first before chucking money you don’t have at all the latest overpriced crap that some YTer told you to buy in order to be a YTer.

And if you are some big name touting that one has to have a certain ‘quality’ of expensive crap just to get anywhere, if you are shooting people down by saying they will never get anywhere using second hand, obsolete supplies because that’s all they can afford: Shut your fat gob!!!

Jenna Marbles sometimes still uses her phone or a webcam. So do many other big YTers. You don’t need an entire production studio when starting out making little videos. One of the latest trends today is Mukbang. The most important thing in those videos is the food, not the overpriced Hollywood camera used to film it. Some Mukbangs aren’t even edited. They don’t need to be edited. So no, you don’t need the latest software used by Weta Studios to edit simple videos like Mukbangs. ASMR, vlogs, mukbangs can do perfectly well edited in a broken version of Microsoft Movie Maker.

All the best YTers and influencers started out with the cheapest crap. Including the ones giving you this dangerous advice of affluenza. They are hypocrites who are straight up lying to you.

Starting out with arts and crafts, you don’t need the most expencive equipment and supplies, anyone who tells you otherwise is setting you up to fail. Bob Ross used cheap paintbrushes I could probably get from the Warehouse or even a $2 shop. Right now my strategy is to sell small, cheap paintings and use all the profits to buy more art supplies. That could be your goal too.

I’m doing this because do you honestly think I can afford the highest end of oil paints while unemployed and disabled? LOL.

And pouring money into writing as a side hustle. Are you serious??? I haven’t heard much ‘advice’ demanding that you do this. But anyone who tells you to empty your bank account just to write is an absolute scam artist.

Of all the hustles I’ve mentioned today, this should be the most inexpensive, if not FREE to do.

Writing should be done anywhere on anything. Anyone who screeches that you ‘need’ to buy and buy and buy and buy this and that overpriced software/supplies before you even start writing should be slapped! This software should be tools to help you and make things easier for you, not requirements to just bashing your words down.

I’m using Open Office and am slowly transitioning to Google Docs. I am now boycotting the moneygrubbing scam that is Word. Over $100 to use a writing software for only one year???? Really??? Are you high on something, Microsoft? Linux is killing your business! Some of us have to save up for months to by a new pair of pants from the Warehouse! I will use whatever software I have at the time!!!

And all of that is when I’m not physically writing in an actual notebook with an actual pen, both of which shouldn’t be overpriced either. Anyone who tells you that you ‘need’ some speshul pen and speshul notebook/paper for some massive price is scamming you! Your pen and your paper for writing should be special to you, not your wallet.

I’m even avoiding using a professional editor. Everyone in the writers’ groups will scream at you that you ‘need’ one. But once again: With what money, bitch? Editors aren’t free!!!! They charge money for good reason! They need to eat too! So I might go with another option, or just straight up skip that step before I publish. An editor is something I could get once I’ve actually made money from my books. Otherwise, I have nothing to pay an editor with. And as an artist myself, I couldn’t bring myself to pay them in ‘exposure’.

And then there’s book covers. Yeh…

Book cover artists should absolutely be paid. With money. Which is why I can’t have one. Being an artist, again, I will do it myself until there is money.

This ‘advice’ is one of the biggest ripoffs I have ever seen. Even when you actually have money, it’s a massive scam.

Even if you don’t want to make money, even if you just want it as a hobby, you shouldn’t be expected to spend too much on it.

If you do want to make money, you still shouldn’t spend too much, only what you can, especially if there is no money for extra things in your life. It should support itself. It should not make you homeless because you put all your eggs into one basket.

There is an endless amount of actually good business advice out there, I’m just starting to find it myself. Affluenza is not good business. Quite the opposite actually.

And I am more than happy to use better quality stuff if someone buys it for me 🙂

What I learned at art school

An artist never stops learning. Some artists are self taught, others actually have degrees and batchellors in it. There are even doctorates (more about that later). There is some controversy to which one of these options makes the best artist. My opinion is: Make art!

I did three years at NMIT, which would get you a degree in Visual Arts and Media. I didn’t get the degree though, I earned a Certificate instead. But even though I was studying for the degree, I didn’t expect to get it. I had just failed Year 13 and all I wanted to do was go to polytech and learn about art.

So here is some things that I learned.

1. Don’t eat oil paints

Oil Paints

Right from day one of learning about oil paints we all wore gloves. Seriously, some oil paints are pretty toxic. Wear gloves. Wash your hands. I once ate something after using oil paints. Then I painted this:

AAAAAAARRG!

AAAAAAARRRRGGGG!!!!

2. The word ‘phallocentrisim’ and how to use it in a sentence

You don't get much more phallus than this.

You don’t get much more phallus than this.

I also learned that if you can’t even remember to spell it the phallocentric spell check will do piss all to help you 😀 There were a few ‘women in art’ options for assignments. I chose one for one of my last assignments because why the hell not? It was like, where has this group called ‘feminists’ been all my life?? These are exactly the same issues I’ve been screaming about since I was bloody born! You mean people can actually agree with me? Holy crap! Give me some of whatever this thing is.

Phallocentrism is a feminist invented word for the male dominated language. For example. Male. FeMALE. MANkind. HuMAN. Man. WoMAN. ect. There’s probably heaps more like this in the English language. Something interesting I learned about French: Most of its words tend to have male and female versions. I’m talking about words for things like duck or wall. Sometimes even words like ‘the’ has two versions depending on gender.

Some of my tutors worried that I might be offended by this topic. Nigel the Christian Feminist Dragon? I’ll give it a go.

3. People like my powerpoints. The essay that’s supposed to go with it never gets completed XD

In one Powerpoint I opened a Gallery Exhibition. On the Moon. Because I can.

In one Powerpoint I opened a Gallery Exhibition. On the Moon. Because I can.

Well it is and ART course and powerpoints are a great place to be creative. But I can’t do essays. I can’t write ten pages to answer one question. Some of them were a bit close ended anyway O.o I can write a novel, but my essays and assignments always fail requirements 😦 Which brings me back to my opinion: Make art!

4. The difference between water, acrylic and oil, let alone how to use them

Batman tried to help

Batman tried to help

Nigel honestly didn’t even know there WAS and ‘oil paint’ until the last year of art school. (But then again, this is Nelson.)

During my first year I learned how to use waters, which was fun 🙂 Can’t tell you which is my fave though since they all have different qualities. I want to use all teh paints!!! But don’t eat them. Read #1

5. I’m really good at abstracts. Drawing from life nearly makes me vomit!

Best life drawing I ever did. Drew this at least 5 years ago.

Best life drawing I ever did. Drew this at least 5 years ago.

Especially after I ate all my oil paints! But seriously though, I’ve never been able to draw from life, all my drawings came from my head. Thankfully most of our life drawings were to practice things like contour and space and line so most of mine looked pretty abstract anyway.

Drawing perspective from life gave me a headache. So does trying to draw stuff on a table or the room or outside. I think my nose may have started bleeding at one point.

But I love my abstracts. I used to draw circles and stuff when I was little with crayons and pencils. At polytech I used paints and it was called art and people said I could sell them. I call them my autism paintings, which is exactly what they are.

6. You can be a doctor of arts

No seriously. One of my tutors was a Dr. of ARTS! Pretty epic title. If you want one, definitely give it a go.

8. What about the Degree?

My first ever trophy

My first ever trophy

 

I failed Year 13. I failed the Degree.

I was also the first on both sides of my family to actually complete Yr 13. Some didn’t even start. At the end I was given an award for perseverance. I earned Excellence for my paintings (Hmm, I wonder what I should do when I grow up?). The highest mark, and apparently the hardest to get. Many of my fellow classmates had some cool paintings but still didn’t get Excellence 😦 An NCEA Certificate would have been nice, but I went to school to learn stuff. The entire NCEA system is rigged in my opinion anyway. Even geniuses have failed it. 😛

I also completed polytech with a Certificate. I got it because I went to polytech and learned how to paint and draw, which is all I wanted to do anyway. I fracking love making stuff.

My first Higher Education ever

My first Higher Education ever

Isn’t that the whole reason for the existence of school? To learn stuff? When did the point of school become a script where you have to do everything exactly one way, do the same thing everyone else does, learn the same thing in the same way all just to get a piece of paper with your name on it? I already know how to spell my name, thanks, learned that before I started school 😛 But I learned stuff, so I’m happy with that. Better than being dumb 🙂

So in conclusion: Everybody now one two three MAKE ART!

 

Creativity is not bought in a store

To continue crafts week lets talk about products!

Which ones would I recommend?

Well I don’t have many good quality ones as I am an Artist (another name for ‘Just graduated from art classes and has never had a paid job before’) so I can’t recommend them. I recommend the cheap stuff because its the only products I’ve used 😉

So anyway, I believe this video from Jennibellie sums everything up perfectly. She is one of my favourite craters on youtube!

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