This past weekend marked the end of another amazing Three Rivers Arts Festival (TRAF) here in Pittsburgh. Held for ten days, starting the first Friday of June, I personally look forward to this event every year - specifically the Artist Market!
There’s nothing like browsing aisles of artists and craftsmen (and women!) who are mastering more mediums than you can imagine. Plus, because the festival is over a week long, the artists rotate. This means you can attend several times and find something new!
However, did you know that you can take advantage of those same artists all year-long? The official TRAF website lists all of the participating artists from the most recent festival. Each individual listing includes a photo example of their work - as well as links to their website and social media accounts.
In other words, long after the festival is over, you can easily find an artist you remember from your visit - or browse for ones that appeal to you today! As a result, you can utilize the Artist Market year-round in (at least) the following two ways:
Find The Perfect Gift
We all know how challenging shopping for gifts can be! Whether you’re shopping for someone who is impossible to buy for or looking for new ideas, it can help to think outside-the-box. Not only might you solve your gift-giving conundrum, but you could potentially turn your recipient onto a new favorite artist too!
During the 2017 TRAF, for example, I happened upon the vendor Zooguu with her utterly adorable faux taxidermy wall art. (Emphasis on adorable!) I have a friend who loves narwhals, and there hung several versions that I knew she’d love as a birthday gift! When that same friend visited this year’s festival with me, we made sure to browse Zooguu’s booth. Plus moving forward, I have a vendor that I can buy fun and unique gifts from. (Because what woman doesn’t have a favorite animal?)
Find New Decor - For Yourself or Others!
This tends to be where the bulk of my personal experience falls. Every year, I always find one artist that I connect with - and end-up purchasing something to add to my apartment’s decor. This year it was an amazing set of line illustration artwork from KLoRebel that I used in re-decorating a room. (See below.)
For you, it may be pottery, paintings or photographic art, ceramics, origami figures, kitchen textiles … you name it! The point is, if you’re looking for something original - something beyond the typical home goods store - browse through the TRAF artist listing.
Keep in mind, too, that just because you saw an artist at the event, and maybe didn’t buy, doesn’t mean they might not have what you need today! We tend to look for what naturally appeals - but also with certain shopping goals or budgets in mind. And those typically change!