Yeah, my First Fridays event went off last Friday the 7th. It was an interesting marketing exercise for me not being particularly adept at or having any experience with this sort of thing. I spent hours moving things around to make space, I mean this is a working studio and during a shoot, I just move things to where I need them. To move all the things to some place out of the way to make room for entertainers and people to hang out to see and enjoy them was quite the undertaking. I went with just simple, so I opened up the space, set an "ambience" with twinkle lights, a blue fresnel spot, a few pedestal tables and did the best I could with what I had. I think it worked.
I cannot believe how many compliments I got on my studio, the space and the studio proper meaning my set up and the way I'm using it. I had grand plans to use this new cling media that hangs anywhere. I invested in the media and put prints together but just did not get the time to hang anything new. I just had my older pictures on the walls and even those where well received! People took me aside to ask about my business, how long have I been there, and to tell me they loved my photos and my studio. I really don't think many have seen a working studio before, equating a photo studio with what they see at JC Penney's or Sears. Thats not me or my place. I was amazed at the new people visiting and of course grateful for the old friends that stopped by as well. I had a great turnout! Wonderful to see so many out and about too. I think Aurora is doing a great job promoting the city as it should. There is a creative wealth downtown that needs to be experienced.
Early on, I was stumped on what to do for this event. Thanks to some outstanding musical talent (I cannot believe I know such talent!) my problem was solved. These two folks, Jessica Martindale and Zach Cannella put on an outstanding show! Truly incredible. This was all about artists collaborating and helping artists. Man did they ever!
I could not have had the crowd and the success I did Friday without them. I owe each so much! People were wowed, and made mention of how good these two are. Jessica has a voice you just have to hear to believe and coupled with her penchant for songwriting, it makes for a powerful combination. She hails from Nashville currently and has that good old down home personality to match her music skills. She is so "down home" the audience instantly feels comfortable. Then, once she starts singing, its "hair tingling". She is working on her first full length LP and based on her YouTube and soundcloud tunes, she should do well. Zach might not have invented the guitar but he plays one like he did. Zach is on his way to making Nashville his residence AND he is recording his first EP. Zach also knows how to write music and has a voice that many commented remind them of a stronger Art Garfunkel (check the way back machine) given his style. This guy has talent. You need to get him on your radar. Zach shares with the audience and instantly builds rapport lending to his laid back style. Check out his Kickstarter campaign to help with his "Bottom Drawer" EP.
Thanks to so many that stopped by to visit. It was a long day for me, about fourteen hours all told but it was worth it. Artists have to help each other out, its just too hard to be successful these days otherwise. And it helps when you know you aren't alone. Working together as a team has obvious benefit and I hope to help these two, and many others, visualize their craft and help promote it to the masses through my imagery. Not to mention, its fun and a damn good time!
Thanks Jessica and Zach. I look forward to watching you both ride your music to the top.