I am happy to report that the I Heart Art: Portland project — a crafty community collaboration between Etsy, the Pacific Northwest College of Arts, and the Portland Etsy Team — has been doing all sorts of amazing things since its inception in February of this year.
The I Heart Art gang is curating an exciting evening of “speed networking” (speed dating meets sales networking) called Mixer Match. On September 1, 2010 at 6 p.m., sixty handmade artists will rotate between 20 local and regional buyers, with only 2 minutes per station to pitch their product. Applications for artists are being accepted now through August 13, 2010 — if you’re a Portland seller, apply now! Even if you’re not chosen, there’ll be another area for drinks and talking shop with local business celebrity guests. It’s going to be a fun experiment!
Over the past nine months, the I Heart Art group has seen an enormous amount of success with their free workshop series.
You can use these resources too — just check out their blog for the series of informative articles. The latest piece, “Going Green” by Christine Claringbold, a.k.a. Eyepopart, Stephanie Weber, a.k.a. PickleThings, and Eleanor Williams, a.k.a. remnantbyeleanor, accompanies a panel-style workshop of the same title that they led at the MOCC on July 17.
The write-up is both inspiring and filled with hands-on tips. It’s an instructive manifesto all about how small craft business owners can play an influential role in driving business practices and implementing broad cultural change. “Sustainability is two sided,” they write. “It’s both maintaining the success of your business and keeping the local and global environments healthy and vibrant. By going green, you’ll be able to save on cost of goods and overhead and market your business as sustainable. Plus, you’ll feel good about your impact in the world. So, let’s change our attitudes — and business practices.”
Continue reading about what you can do to be green and check out some prime examples of eco-friendly shops and organizations (such as the Trillium Artisans, a brick-and-mortar shop in Portland, as well as an Etsy Team) in the rest of their post. While you’re at it, check out this nice piece filled with success tips for small businesses written by Jackie B. Peterson.
To accommodate those of us who couldn’t attend the workshops in person, the I Heart Art team has put up video footage of the events. Below is a video recording of Workshop 2, where Lisa Gastelum of TBQ Designs taught a class on photography techniques for your website, blog, or online shop. The entire clip is almost an hour-and-a-half, but if you go to the Vimeo page you can download the file to your machine and watch it at your leisure.