The Challenges of a Group Sale

It was a group sale, during "Black Friday Weekend". Expectations were high, but results were low.
The local photography club has group "show and sale" events twice a year. They are an opportunity for photographers to meet other photographers, and for the public to see what we've been doing with our photographic art.
Leading up to the show, I mused about the balance between producing art that is important and rewarding to me, and producing art that is appealing enough for others to buy. I displayed several large prints, and some smaller works. By the end of the four-hour show, I had sold a couple of the smaller works.

That result on its own was not too bad, although I had enjoyed greater interest and more profit from similar "club show" sales in the past. This time - as has been the case with other sales and with life in general - I approached the show with an attitude of hoping for the best, expecting the worst, and accepting whatever results arose. I did that, even to the point of accepting the paltry results. That acceptance is not so unequivocal as to prevent this blog entry, though: I am questioning the value of offering work that I consider to have value and meaning, when it does not attract any buyers. Yes, I know that that is a foolish statement to make: we can't balance intrinsic artistic merit against a fistful of dollars. My musings aren't about that balance, but instead stem from a questioning of my own ego. Most of my mind realizes and accepts that the value of photography is in connection and communication and development and introspection, and not in the fiscal bottom line. Somehow, I have to make those sincere beliefs override the other thoughts of selling prints. I am not going to be able to retire on sales of my prints. I'll continue to produce images that appeal to me, and that might connect with others. And, occasionally, I'll find that my work has been appreciated (whether or not it is purchased).
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