Surtex: Should Visiting Artists Pay?

I asked people on Linkedin about their evaluation of Surtex, Here is a sampling of what they said about whether non-exhibiting artists should pay to get it:

- On the one hand we are advised that this is an investment in ourselves and on the other side we are examining our wallets and thinking about less costly alternatives that would successfully market our art.

- $150 may seem like a lot up front, but is not unreasonable in today's economic climate. From a business perspective, $150 to check out the show is still worth it.

- Being an artist is tough in any economic period. The entry fee as daunting for artists who want to get started.

- I am 1000% behind the expense to get in. Artists who pay nothing other than travel expenses, yet feel a sense of entitlement to come in and freely meet and greet new and existing business that the rest of us pay big bucks to snag, well, it smacks of freeloading to me.

- $ 150 was not that much for what I saw and learned but the second person with me should have paid much less.

- I didn't think it was too high a cost at all. I just saw it as a business investment since I was considering exhibiting at Surtex the following year. I think if someone's paying money for a plane ticket and hotel to NYC then $150 is just a small added on fee in comparison.

I also agree with the $150 fee, I had very few artists stopping by, or "entrepreneur" types who ask me to work for nothing, except a "share" of their success, if it happened. If someone can't see spending the equivalent of a month's worth of lattes for this valuable experience, how could they think of taking on the expense of doing the show?

- I agree with show management about charging at least 150 dollars for artist to walk the show. The art licensing industry is not low budget industry to break in to. If an artist has the will to succeed at this I think they can find away to get the 150 dollars to come to the show, that is actually a drop in the bucket.

I agree wholeheartedly with the idea of raising the fee. As a long time member of SCBWI, I consider the $150 a pittance compared to what we pay for those conferences.

- I would not have paid $150 for an event where I was supposed to stay in the middle of the aisles, not approach booths, not linger in front of any booth, not talk with anyone, not do networking.

(photos from Surtex website)


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Andy Mathis said...

I went to see the Stationery Show and spent about 10 minutes saying hello to a few Surtex exhibitors.

I would not pay $150 to visit the show.

I am surprised to learn that attendees pay to go to the seminars, but the people on the panels aren't compensated for their time. That seems wrong.

Maria Brophy said...

I think charging a fee separates the serious from the not-so-serious. One who is committed to learning about licensing will happily pay the fees. Those who aren't, won't.

It makes for a more business-friendly environment at Surtex.

However, the License show does not charge any fee for an artist to walk the show.

I find that most people who are committed to investing in themselves will not have a problem with any fee that leads them to greater knowledge.

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