A guest blog: by Sue Dawson
I THINK I’VE READ ten articles – online, and in local papers – mentioning how fast it’s felt, with Memorial Day weekend already here. New England had a rough winter, so perhaps we’re still reeling from that. I’m still drinking in the sounds and smells of the spring birds and flowers, marveling at the transformation. Or maybe it’s that the island is staying busier in the off-season, so we’re wondering if we’ll be able to fit all the summer visitors onto this rock. All I know is that the college kids are back, heavier traffic is making my errands take longer, and I gave out three of my homemade maps yesterday, showing tourists the way back to the center of town. The 2015 season has officially begun.
Our garden (at the gallery) already looks fantastic, thanks to the team at Working Earth. They’ve been here a few times this week, getting us ready for the big weekend. Our Advanced Mentorship show is up for one last day, and we’re psyched to see our group when they pick up their photos. Tonight we’ll hang Alison’s first show of new photographs, and get ready for our opening reception tomorrow (from 4 to 7pm).
We have a few changes this year, including a new premium option for framing. I found a gorgeous frame that we’re offering in eight finishes, with museum glass. Our largest prints (the 4’s, for our savvy customers) will all be framed in the premium style from now on. 2015 is also the year that our prices are going up. Our costs of doing business go up every year, but I only raise our prices every three years. Claire and I spent months looking at our costs, getting quotes from our vendors, and analyzing how we need to price for the next three years. It’s a painstaking process, but I need to know that we’ve been thoughtful about it. I’ve also changed the structure of our limited editions of 50, so that the price goes up at even increments, matching the structure of our editions of 20. The good news is that the prints people already own have just gone up in value (yay).
So we shift. There’s the weather shift, going from freezing cold and gray days to flowers and blue skies. There’s the seasonal shift on the island, going from 15,000 people to 115,000 at the peak (and all the cars those people bring). And there’s the shift we do in our business, where we constantly evaluate what we’re doing, and how we’re doing it. It’s a roller coaster that never stops (which is a good thing). And this is the day we buckle in, so we can enjoy the ride.