Art Shop Frustrations

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I don’t know about you… an art shop is supposed to be great for an artist to walk through the door, and feel like a child in a chocolate factory.

So why do I get so frustrated at times, as I am sure other artist do too. So lets get to it, and I’ll tell you why I get this way.

What about us Sculptors?

How many sculptors are out there? maybe not as many as painters and craft people. But we, like painters are following in the oldest of art forms.

So is there a reason that when I walk into an art shop with the hope that this one is going to have the material that I need to satisfy my needs as a sculptor.

Walking into an art shop and being able to buy what I need as a sculptor. Is it so hard!

Well… it seems to be that way. I’m sure that there are many of us sculptors out there that almost feel as though they want to jump over the counter of yet another art shop. And throttle the shop assistant. When you see a half crazed artist in the troughs of frustration, it can be a little scary.

Were not misunderstood, we have needs as any other artist. We just want our art materials as any other artist does. So why when, say a painter goes into an art shop, and wants to buy some paints, thinners, or paint brushes. They just scan the shelves of all the different styles and brands of art materials they need. Then casually march up to the counter and pay for their goods, and walk out of the store with a smile on their faces.

So here we are… in the mist of just about throttling the poor counter assistant, because the shop does not have much sculpture materials, same old story.

More often than not you cant find what you are looking for. So you might be brave enough to ask for casting materials, to cast your sculpture. Or some sort of sculpting tool, coloration that you want to finish off your sculptor with. And the assistant looks blankly at you, then gathering their selves, sometimes clearing their throats – getting into expert mode. They try to fob you off with another product that does not have anything to do what you are looking for.

Ever found this? well I have. Here comes that feeling of wanting to hurl yourself at the poor shop assistant again. Or the most frustrating answer to your enquiries. “I’m sorry but we don’t stock that”.

No different in other countries

Do you think it gets any easier when you go into an art shop in another country. Well think again.

Even in Europe, where you think you would have a better chance of getting your sculpture supplies would brighten up your spirits. Only to have your hopes dashed as you walk slowly down the isles with your eyes darting eagerly at the shelves from top to bottom, trying to find sculpting materials.

Watch out! you catch sight of what looks like sculpting clay, then in probably the smallest section that could be found in the shop. You browse the sculpture materials, nothing much there. So you go on, hoping that around the next isle there might be some more sculpting materials. Only to double back and walk the isles once more; just in case you may have overlooked something.

Unless you go to a specialty shop which are very rare, or visit maybe, an art shop in Italy where so many sculptures take pride and place amongst the streets. You might be able to come out of the shop smiling with bag of sculpture goodies in hand.

Walking out the door happy

If you ask the shop assistant why there is not such a big sculpture section, you get the reply, that there is not a great need for sculpture supplies, compared to painters. Yet I see colors of the rainbow paints, crayons, chalk and colored pencils.

That’s all well and good, but not for the sculptor, do we have to picket outside your shops with placards raised high in the air. Saying rights for sculptors too.

OK you want to make money, and the call for sculpting material is not as high as materials for painters to name a few. So your in the art field, your supplying us, but you not making all of us artists happy.

It would be nice, just once to be able to go into an art shop and see a decent amount of sculpting materials for us sculptors, for a change…

So good sculptor artists out there, we are unique it seems. One of the oldest forms of art that has spanned most of civilizations of man. And yet we need to search height and low for the products we need.

I do see the good old wooden sculpture tools for clay. There again, you can get these at many different shops, that have nothing to do with art…

Someone had to blow the sculpture horn and say, we have needs too. And if all the public out there that might think that many of us artists might be a bit temperamental at times. Maybe we should act up to this expectation and march with placards at hand outside the art shops. Does it take this much to get many of the art shops ready to listen to us.

Permission to reproduce if byline stays intact, courtesy copy appreciated; not required.

By: Andrea Balch


Source by Andrea Balch

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