I want to kick this blog post off by doing a little time travel so to speak. If you would be so kind as to oblige me, I would like to take you back to February 2012. I was exhibiting at an established art show called the Toronto Artist Project. It was there this particular journey began.
That weekend, I met one of the most wonderful, kindhearted people I have ever had the pleasure of knowing in my life. Unbeknownst to me at the time, this woman would help shape, mold and push my business in directions I had never even thought of.
Upon meeting this wonderful woman we discussed the possibility of working together on future projects, about art and about business in general. We had a great conversation then parted ways. She had other artists and booths to check out and I had potential clients to meet and talk to. I remember thinking this woman was incredibly kind, had a great personality and would be great to work with. As far as these shows go though, as an exhibitor you meet a lot of people over the course of the weekend. They all hand out their business cards and take yours with intentions and/or promises of purchasing your art or working with you. As with all things life gets in the way, business cards get lost etc. however I had a good feeling about this particular chance meeting.
A couple of weeks following the show I was going through my collection of business cards and came across her business card and gave her a call. We chatted about the show and got a little more acquainted. At the time of the call she had nothing going on that would allow us to work together but told me to keep in touch, so I did. I would give her a call or drop her an email once a month or so although nothing was happening.
Fast forward a year later and I got a call from her. She asked me if I would be interested in an opportunity to showcase my work at a swanky theater in Toronto, a VIP Lounge at an opera for 10 days. Naturally I jumped at the chance. That gig finished up and we kept in touch on a more frequent basis. More gigs have come out of the relationship and I am exploring avenues I had never even considered before I met Mari. Not only have I gained business opportunities but I have also gained a great friend.
It just goes to show that investing in relationships as well as the craft DO indeed pay off and by dong this, good things WILL present themselves in ways you never even imagined.
Image courtesy of affirmyourlife.blogspot.com