RAW: Natural Born Artists : Merge 10.8.2015
If you're an artist and looking for exposure and a large variety of networking opportunities RAW Artists is the place to go. I did my first RAW show back in Nov 2014 in no other than Richmond, VA. Other than the costly fee to certifying your spot as a RAW Artists, everything else about the organization is pretty solid with supporting artist. The fee is something I can't really complain about since I've paid a vendor fee for majority of the show I've had work in. I will say being able to sale tickets to pay for the cost of the "vendors fee" I think was extremely helpful and does allow for artist to invite friends and family along with pay for the vendor spot. One thing I took away mostly was meeting a great number of talented artist at my showcase, many I still keep in contact with and have even later had shows with. Also, I've connected with other RAW artist in different states all off comments and likes we share on social media. Back to the "vendor fee"... after one successful show you get one free, its like the BOGO of the art world. I looked at it as a large one time payment for two shows, with complimentary tickets to the shows and every RAW show thereafter and to be able to pick from the most artistic cities through the US... it made sense after I dropped out of pocket for the tickets I didn't sale.
So after being deprived from the art world for a month or so I made it my duty to attend the Oct show in Richmond. It didn't make my decision too hard to go being that I knew a few artist showcasing and wanted food from Speakeasy. RAW has a way of making me comfortable with spending $10 for a glass of wine, blowing my ears out with loud music, mingling with people my parents' age all while exchanging business cards with other artists. Between the fashion shows, singers and makeup/hair shows it's impossible to have a good time at a showcase. I'm no photographer but I try to put this fancy iPhone to use and snap some pictures of a few of my favorite artist... Hasson I met about a year ago and from I became a fan. His work just draws me in and the pop of colors really takes his characters to life. Austin is a new artist I met but couldn't help but to greet him and this bold colorful "creature-like" pieces. Then I came across Mahari's work and Oh My Goodness! It took me two days of staring at her paintings to see that I think I was looking at a vagina! Surprisingly this wouldn't be my last time seeing Mahari as we both participated in CAN Festival 2015. Last but not least, I finally got to meet Staci! Beside her flawless makeup (no seriously it was flawless) her pieces had just as much personality as her dress. I feel like my pictures do no justice for any of the artist so follow their social media and buy something from them, please!